Introduction

repairing concrete
Photographs by Geoffrey Gross
»
In the past, when a concrete patio or driveway started to show serious signs of aging, using a jackhammer or bringing in a bulldozer were the only repair options. Today there are more practical alternatives.

Polymer-based cement resurfacers are formulated to transform cracked, spalled, weatherworn concrete to like-new condition. The top dressing we used on this project, Ardex CD Concrete Dressing, is made of portland cement and high-performance polymers. It's mixed with water and applied with a steel trowel, squeegee or push broom to a thickness of only 1/16 inch. One 20-lb. bag costs about $54 and covers 120 square feet. (The average concrete driveway is about 500 square feet.)

Besides patios and driveways, Ardex can be used to resurface concrete stairs, sidewalks, garage floors, and most vertical surfaces. For our project, we resurfaced a 9 X 27-foot driveway and 3 X 18-foot walkway using six bags of Ardex. It took two people five hours to complete the job. The work isn't particularly difficult, but the pace is frenetic. Once the water is mixed in, you've got less than 30 minutes to apply the concrete dressing.

For optimum results, work on a day with low humidity, no rain and an air temperature ranging between 70° and 75°F. The surface temperature of the existing concrete must be at least 50°F.

Contribute to This Story Below

    More in TOH Pro