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Robert Lackey
Sidewalk repair

I have two issues with my sidewalk that I'd like to repair once the weather stabilizes.

1. The slabs of the sidewalk have spread out over the years so that grass grows up between them. I've purchased the foam backer rod and self leveling liquid already. Some of the slabs, especially at the end of the driveway, are several inches apart. Will I have to use anything in addition to this?

2. One slab of sidewalk is crumbling badly (it looks like a bad patch job from a previous owner). A good inch or so is gone and the stones are constantly falling out. I'd like to fix it myself. I assume I'd clean it out until I hit something solid and then use a bonding agent and fresh cement?

Any answers greatly appreciated!

Re: Sidewalk repair

With any sizable gaps between the "slabs" any type of hardening cement type product will eventually fail. You need something that is flexiable.
In some cases you may try using the crack filling caulk used for asphalt driveways.

As for repairing the surface of the sidewalk there are expoxy based cement re-surface/patching products available. This will depend on what is causing the cement to deteroriate in the first place. If the concrete was a poor mix originally then it will continue to disinegrate and may actually need replacing other than repairing.

A. Spruce
Re: Sidewalk repair

If the gap is wide enough, dig them out and install bricks between the segments. It will be a nicer look that is repairable should the segments continue to move. If the gaps are not wide enough, you could cut them wider for the installation of brick. I would be inclined to loose lay the brick over compacted sand rather than trying to mortar them in. If you don't like those ideas, you might be able to tighten up the gaps by moving the segments closer together with a prybar. You'll have to dig around the perimeter to free it up. With a little luck, you'll be able to move them all tightly together, leaving a big gap at the slab that needs replacement, incorporating the extra space into the new slab.

The segment that is breaking up sounds like you'd be better off replacing it than trying to repair it, you'll certainly get a better looking job that way.

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