Concrete can crack for various reasons, including repeated freezing and thawing, heavy vehicle use, and ground shifts. Most small cracks are merely cosmetic at first, but it’s important to get them taken care of before they turn into large, costly problems.

WHEN: Cracks need to be filled when temperatures are above 50 degrees and the ground is dry, with no rain in the immediate forecast. A warm, sunny day works best for this job.

WHY: It’s important to take care of small cracks before they spread or widen, and now is the time to do it. Colder weather this fall and winter, along with precipitation could make the problem worse. Additionally, making these repairs will greatly increase your home’s curb appeal, especially if you’re selling in the near future.

HOW: This is a relatively quick job that anyone can tackle! Purchase a concrete or masonry crack filler designed for small cracks. Look for a product that is flexible. If you can find one that self-levels that’s an even bigger bonus. Remove any weeds, previous caulk or fillers used, and sweep away any debris. We also recommend power washing the area with an outdoor concrete cleaning solution. Allow the area to dry, and you’re ready to fill the cracks!

First, we recommend putting on rubber gloves to protect yourself. Apply the filler or mix into your cracks, pressing it in level with the surrounding cement using the pointed end of a trowel or a putty knife if needed. Blend and scrape off any excess so the patch won’t be noticeable. Let it dry completely before walking or driving on it. Follow the instructions on the packaging. Some are dry in hours, and others may take days.

IF: If your cracks are a quarter inch or smaller, they can easily be filled as instructed above. If your cracks are larger, you can still repair them, but you may need foam backer rod and a more robust repair mix. Be aware that larger cracks may signify a bigger issue, particularly if one section is higher due to sinking ground. At this point it’s probably time to call in a professional, as crack repairs will only work as a temporary band-aid. We recommend taking care of it before the problem gets to this point if possible!

 

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