Posted on: November 26, 2018
How Ice and Snow can Damage Your Driveway
Contrary to public opinion, rock salt isn’t the best to use on your concrete driveway in your attempt to melt snow and ice.
While rock salt may be effective in preventing slips, falls and collisions, continued and long use can cause your concrete driveways to develop wide cracks or even large holes.
This is how it happens: when rock salt is used on the driveway, ice and snow enter small cracks and porous surfaces of the driveway and freeze inside. The ice that forms in these areas can cause cracks to expand which can lead to the formation of larger gaps and weakened spots that need repair.
While this solution can melt ice and snow on driveways and other surfaces, it also enters small cracks and porous surfaces of concrete driveways and causes problems. When this occurs, the mixture freezes inside these cracks and pores, since it has a lower freezing temperature than water alone. The ice that forms in these areas can cause them to expand, which can lead to the formation of potholes, large gaps and other weakened spots. These problems can make your concrete driveway more hazardous to walk or drive on.
There are several ways to repair your damaged driveway without breaking up the slab and fixing a new one.
You could start by using a Concrete Resurfacer which is a blend of Portland cement, additives, sand and polymer modifiers designed to provide a compensated repair material to make thin repairs to sound concrete in need of just surface renewal.
The application procedure is rather straightforward. First, you need to remove any dirt or mould with a pressure washer. The slab is then made wet and a special masonry cleaning solution is sprayed on the surface. The high-pressure nozzle, attached to the washer, is then used to thoroughly clean the slab as well as the cracks. Mixed with water to obtain a thick consistency, the Concrete Resurfacer is then used to fill the cracks using a flat edge trowel.
Allow it to dry overnight and apply a second layer of a much thinner Resurfacer mix after first wetting the concrete.
Another way to give a face lift to your damaged driveway is through resurfacing. This technique involves installing permeable paving over old concrete driveways. Aluminium strip edging is done before this technique is applied. The existing driveway is covered with a layer of three-part resin combined with aggregate on-site.
Fixing discoloured concrete driveway
If you are fortunate, continued use of rock salt on your concrete driveway will only cause your driveway to discolour. In that case, you may want to use a tinted sealer to hide the discoloration and protect your driveway. It is recommended that you only apply a sealer after you have put a layer of concrete stain on your driveway.
Another option to fix discoloured driveways is the use of acid wash. It is best to wet the concrete before applying the acid to make sure it does not penetrate the concrete farther than the surface layer.