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Concrete Sinking: 5 Reasons Why It Sinks and How to Fix It

Concrete sinking is a big problem for property owners, causing lots of issues from how things look to safety. Knowing why it happens is key for fixing it right. In this guide, we’ll talk about five common reasons why concrete sinks and how to solve them.

 

Concrete Sinking Sidewalk

 

Why Concrete Sinking Happens

 
 

1. Poor Soil Compaction

 

Concrete sinks mainly because the soil underneath isn’t packed well. If the soil isn’t compacted enough before pouring concrete, it can sink and crack later on. Also, erosion and water getting in can make it worse.

How to fix it:
 

Prepare the soil right before pouring concrete. That means compacting it well and making sure water drains away properly. Plus, adding a layer of gravel or crushed stone can help keep the soil steady and stop it from sinking.

 

2. Erosion

 

Erosion also causes concrete sinking, especially where it rains a lot or drainage isn’t good. Over time, rainwater washes away soil under the concrete, making holes and weakening the base. Plus, bad grading and landscaping make this erosion worse.

How to fix it:
 

To stop erosion, deal with drainage problems fast. Put up gutters and downspouts to move water away from the base. Also, level the land so water flows right. Plant local plants and use ways to stop erosion to keep soil in place and make the base strong.

 

3. Plumbing Leaks

 

Plumbing leaks can also make concrete sink, especially if they’re under or near the slab. Water leaking can make the soil soft and wash away stuff that holds it up, making the concrete above it settle and crack. If it stays wet for a long time, it can make the concrete weaker.

How to fix it:
 

To stop plumbing leaks from making concrete sin, regularly check and fix your plumbing. With this, look for leaks, repair broken pipes, and make sure water drains away from the base. Also, put a barrier under the concrete to keep out moisture and stop future sinking.

 

4. Tree Roots

 

Tree roots are a big problem for concrete structures because they can grow into and mess up the foundation. As roots spread out, they push on the soil around them, making it squish down and settle. Also, roots might look for water under the concrete and make the settling worse.

How to fix it:
 

To stop tree roots from wrecking your concrete, plant trees far enough from the foundation. If needed, put up barriers to keep roots away. Keep trees trimmed and maintained to control root growth and lower the chance they’ll mess with the foundation. Plus, keep soil moisture right to keep roots from searching for water under the slab.

 

5. Poor Construction Practices

 

Lastly, poor construction methods can contribute significantly to concrete sinking over time. This includes not reinforcing adequately, mixing concrete incorrectly, or allowing the slab to cure improperly. Additionally, cutting corners during construction can weaken the concrete’s structure and raise the likelihood of settling occurring.

How to fix it:
 

It’s essential to engage reputable contractors who adhere to industry standards and follow best practices. This involves thoroughly preparing the site, using quality materials, and following recommended procedures for pouring and curing concrete. Take note, regular inspections and proactive maintenance can play a crucial role in identifying and resolving potential issues before they escalate.

 

Call us at: (970) 420-9040

Mudjacking Concrete Sinking

 

Alternative Options to Fix Concrete Sinking

 

When concrete sinks, there are alternative options for fixing it, but it’s crucial to consider why it sank first.

 

Concrete Leveling

 

Concrete leveling, also known as slabjacking or mudjacking, is a method to fix uneven or sunken concrete. It involves injecting a special grout or polyurethane foam under the concrete to lift it back up. Additionally, concrete leveling can be effective for settlement due to soil compaction or erosion because it fills voids and stabilizes the foundation.

It is cost-effective compared to replacement and causes minimal disruption. However, it might not work for severely damaged concrete, so consulting a professional is wise.

 

Concrete Grinding

 

Concrete grinding is another option, mainly for minor surface settlement. It uses special equipment to remove uneven areas and level the concrete. Additionally, it enhances the appearance by smoothing rough patches and removing trip hazards.

It is versatile and quick, making it a popular choice. However, it might not fix deeper settlement or structural damage, so careful assessment is necessary.

 

Concrete Replacement

 

Concrete replacement is for severe or widespread sinking. It involves removing the old slab and pouring a new one, ensuring proper preparation and reinforcement. Also, it replacement offers a comprehensive solution but is more costly and time-consuming.

 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Concrete Sinking

 
 

What signs indicate concrete sinking?

 

Concrete sinking shows through uneven surfaces, cracks in the concrete, pooling water near the foundation, and doors or windows that stick or don’t close properly. Additionally, you may notice gaps between the concrete and adjacent structures like sidewalks or walls.

 

How can I determine what causes concrete sinking?

 

Determining the cause of concrete sinking requires a thorough inspection by a professional. Factors such as poor soil compaction, erosion, plumbing leaks, tree roots, and construction practices can all contribute to sinking. Moreover, a trained expert can assess the situation and identify the underlying issue.

 

Can I fix sinking concrete myself?

 

While some minor concrete sinking issues may allow DIY methods like patching or leveling compounds, it’s often best to consult a professional. Plus, DIY repairs may only provide temporary solutions and could fail to address the root cause of the problem, leading to further issues down the line.

 

How much does repairing sinking concrete cost?

 

The cost of repairing sinking concrete can vary depending on the extent of the damage, the underlying cause, and the chosen repair method. Minor repairs like concrete leveling or patching may be relatively inexpensive, while more extensive repairs such as concrete replacement can be costly.

 

How long does it take to repair sinking concrete?

 

The time required to repair sinking concrete depends on the extent of the damage and the chosen repair method. Minor repairs may be completed in a matter of hours, while more extensive repairs could take several days or even weeks. Additionally, factors like weather conditions and accessibility can affect repair timelines.

 

Walkway Concrete Sinking

 

Who To Call to Fix Concrete Sinking? 

 

Fixing sinking concrete as soon as possible is crucial to protect visitors, maintain the aesthetic appeal of your property, and save money on long-term repairs. However, understanding the underlying cause of the concrete sinking is equally essential to prevent future issues.

Cesars Concrete specializes in diagnosing the root cause behind settled concrete and providing effective solutions to lift it back to its proper position. Our team of experts will thoroughly assess the situation and recommend the best course of action. Moreover, with our years of experience and dedication to quality craftsmanship, you can trust Cesars Concrete to restore the safety and integrity of your property’s foundation.

If you’re ready to see what concrete leveling can do for your sinking concrete, click the link below to request a free onsite cost estimate with a Cesars Concrete expert. Don’t wait until the problem escalates – take proactive steps to address your sinking concrete today and ensure the long-term stability of your property. 

 

Call us at: (970) 420-9040

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