Adding a new, great-looking concrete driveway to your home is a good way to enhance its value and your enjoyment of it.
To ensure your concrete driveway lasts for a long time without problems, you need to be proactive at the front end, using quality materials and workmanship in its construction.
At R&M Concrete, we are a family-owned business offering expert services to residential and commercial customers in the greater Tulsa area. We can help you build a functional and beautiful driveway that will be there for the long haul.
Make Sure Your Subgrade is Properly Prepared
A properly prepared subgrade provides the support your concrete driveway needs to prevent settlement, ensure uniform slab thickness and to stop cracking in the driveway structure.
You need uniformity in the composition of your supporting ground’s soil and how it is compacted. If there are soft spots, they should be removed and replaced with sturdy materials, such as gravel or crushed rock. Since many western states have expansive soil, they require as much as eight inches of crushed rock as subgrade material.
Also, a knowledgeable concrete driveway contractor will make sure that a driveway is not built on a dried out subgrade. This can lead to the materials underneath sucking away water from the concrete as it is installed. The supporting bed needs to be sprayed first.
Use the Correct Concrete Mix
Using the correct concrete mix, with a minimum compressive strength of 4000 psi and air content of about 6%, will also help with durability and prevent cracking.
A high-performance concrete mix can cost a little more than a basic one. However, over time, it can save you the money and headaches that come from needing to repair cracks and deal with other related issues. Your concrete driveway will face the wear and tear of changing weather conditions and high vehicle use, so you need a durable, low-permeable mix to combat these conditions.
For paving your concrete driveway, the slump (the stiffness of the mix) should be approximately four inches. An overly wet mix can lead to problems with finishing and a weakened surface.
Other Considerations to Prevent Cracking and Boost Longevity
To help prevent random cracking of your concrete driveway, control joints have to be placed at exactly the right intervals, and at the right depth. Also, an isolation joint needs to be installed where the driveway meets existing pavement, such as a sidewalk or garage floor slab.
A concrete driveway exposed to especially heavy traffic may need steel reinforcement, either wire mesh or half-inch steel rebar placed in a specific grid pattern.
As Tulsa and Oklahoma’s leading concrete company, R&M Concrete can ensure that your driveway will last, with exceptional service that is on time and on budget. Contact us today for a free estimate.