Cracking and Settling Walkways and Entryways - Finished
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What To Do With Cracking and Settling Walkways and Entryways

How to Save your Driveway or Walkway without Replacing it

 

Here at Concrete Restorations, no two projects are the same. Each project presents its own unique issues and characteristics, and we even like to build on its negative characteristics. What I mean by that is, you are going to have to often deal with negatives such as cracks and settling along with other potential structural issues.

Looking at this walkway and entryway, we have several issues going on here. First, we have spalling, which is where the surface or the finish of the concrete is flaking off in small but, substantial chips. This spalling is about the size of a dime and appears to be like a concrete rash.

This is somewhat uncommon for walkways because two things cause spalling; overworking the concrete in large pours (which walkways typically are not), or freezing which has most likely occurred. When concrete is being finished, the water in the concrete comes to the surface, allowing the finisher to trowel the concrete to finish.

This moisture rises to the surface and is sitting on top of the concrete. If cold enough, it can freeze causing the concrete to be compromised structurally and eventually pop off in a phenomenon called spalling. The second issues here is cracking. The first photograph looking down the steps displays settling cracks on the second, third, and fourth steps as shown in the first photograph above.

There was also settling where the steps pulled away and the tread and riser come together. It had to be re-bared and re-poured, as shown in the third photograph above between the porch and the walkway. Our goal was to avoid what would typically be total replacement. If you’re going to call your company Concrete Restoration System, you better have solutions.

So the unique issues of this particular project are spalling, cracks and settling. So how do we deal with all the issues presented? To deal with the separation of the step, we demo sawed out a four-inch space where the step riser separated from the tread. We then drilled and set rebar dowels to prevent future settling and poured new concrete. Then, we filled the spalling surface with epoxy as shown in the first photograph.

We then took a right angle grinder and a crack chasing diamond wheel with a “V” shaped blade to open up the cracks and filled them with epoxy and silica sand. Then, we re-opened those existing epoxied cracks again with the right angle grinder and crack chaser and began to carve a flagstone pattern into the entire step creating a unique flagstone look.

We also placed what are now joints into the risers of the step to create a look of placed capstone as shown on the risers in the photograph above of the finished product.

To give these now created stones a natural stone-like appearance, we installed our quartz and epoxy system to obtain a grainy stone finish in a color selected by our client. The same process was used for the entryway or porch to achieve a one of a kind project that the client is absolutely thrilled with as illustrated above in our before and after photographs.

When we say no two projects are alike, we mean just that! After 40 years in business here in the Denver area, we have proven ourselves to be uniquely creative taking each project and making it special for each and every client. It’s simply important!

If you want to find out more about our unique company or just want to talk with an expert about your special project, we encourage you to call the owner Daniel Yalacki at 303-435-3334 for a free consultation. We will make it fun and uniquely yours. Thank you for visiting our site and we look forward to serving you on your unique project!

 

This article was written by:

Daniel Yalacki Architect/Consultant/President

Concrete Restoration Systems LLC

If you would like us to help you with your project, please click here to schedule a free consultation for creative concrete solutions. If you can Imagine it, we can Create it!

 

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  1. The Art of Concrete Restoration
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new resurfaced driveway quartz system
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Spalling and Deteriorated Concrete Driveway Resurfacing With Quartz System

How to save your worn driveway without replacing it

 

In Colorado, a spalling driveway is all too common. In fact, one out of every three driveways in Colorado has spalling or deteriorated concrete. Spalling is the flaking off of the concrete surface as shown in the photographs above. But a replacement is not always necessary.

Here at Concrete Restorations, we have developed several resurfacing systems to repair this type of damage without tear-out or replacement. We offer beautiful decorative applications that are stronger and more durable than your existing concrete driveway. Here we shall discuss our exclusive quartz driveway system that is perfect for repairing and resurfacing your driveway along with walkways, entryway, and even patios.

This particular driveway was a real challenge due to the extent of spalling or deterioration damaged that had occurred over time. Luckily, we enjoy a challenge. On this project, the control joints, which are the tooled joints that divide the concrete into sections, were in pretty bad shape. Control joints are there in hopes that if the concrete cracks, it will be just in that joint and not across the concrete slab.

To restore this driveway, we must remove any concrete that is loose or deteriorated by whip gears and high-pressure water blasting. This process of blasting is illustrated in our video tab showing the flaking concrete flying off the concrete surface. Then we apply a self-leveling mortar over all of the spalling areas. Once repaired, we use a walk-behind diamond concrete grinder to remove all excess mortar from the driveway to make it smooth.

We then fill the control joints with a high strength repair mortar. Then take a right angle grinder with a diamond crack chaser wheel in a “V” shaped blade and a long piece of siding as a guide, to put crisp new control joints throughout the slab. Now we have an excellent pallet to work on for our Quartz System.

Quartz is the fourth hardest mineral known to man below diamonds and is an excellent high traffic material. We combine the strength of quartz with high solid epoxies to create the most comprehensive driveway resurfacing system available in the marketplace today. We have a wide selection of about 3200 colors and a system that is sure to meet the most stringent requirements.

Combining beauty and durability is assured in this high-end application. If you would like to learn more and find out about the multiple alternative systems that are available then feel free to contact Dan Yalacki at Concrete Restoration Systems at 303-435-3334. We provide a free consultation and would love to show you what all is available to you!

 

Article Posted by:

Daniel Yalacki President/Consultant

Concrete Restoration Systems

If you would like us to help you with your project, please click here to schedule a free consultation for creative concrete solutions. If you can Imagine it, we can Create it!

 

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quartz pool deck - after
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Long Lasting Quartz Pool Deck Resurfacing

The benefits of a sustainable pool deck material

 

Quartz is all the rage these days! Quartz is the fourth hardest mineral known to man below diamonds. This durable material is being used on countertops, driveways, entryways, walkways and pool decks! It is available in unlimited colors and has enormous re-surfacing application possibilities.

To illustrate the versatility of the application, I have provided a seriously deteriorated and cracked pool deck above that would normally be torn out and replaced. The pool deck has huge cracks where the coping or the perimeter band around the pool, has separated from the pool deck as illustrated in the first photo. Here, we will take the negatives of this project such as the cracks to make them functional positives. We use the cracks and incorporate them into our application.

To accomplish this, we fill the existing cracks with an epoxy/sand mix and fill the cracks up. We would then grind down the concrete and epoxy/sand patch to make it smooth with a diamond walk behind concrete preparation machine. We would then use a crack chaser which is a “V” shaped diamond wheel attached to a right angle grinder to create a new joint around the pool and cut them into large perimeter stones.

In this application, we chose to then carve up the entire pool deck into a flagstone pattern using the diamond crack chaser to create the pattern. This effectively turns a negative into a positive, as any future movement or cracking would occur inside the new joints created to hide them.

Then, we applied the Quartz System over the entire deck in a color selected by the client. Once the Quartz application is installed, we went back in and opened up all of the joints again with the crack chaser to provide a crisp new grout joint around each of the flagstones that we created.

Using art and technology allows us to provide uniqueness to every project. If you would like us to help you with your project, please click here to schedule a free consultation for creative concrete solutions. If you can Imagine it, we can Create it!

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Micro-Topping - Finished 2
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Micro-topping Resurfacing Systems

The benefits of installing a Micro-topping System to a driveway

 

In recent articles published by Concrete Restoration Systems, we have provided alternatives to replacing deteriorated, spalling and discolored concrete. In this article, we shall be exploring the benefits of installing a Micro-topping System to this driveway.

In the “before” photo above, we have a driveway that is extremely deteriorated and discolored. The control joints were ragged and cracked through and the surface was pitted and soft.

This homeowner was concerned that he would lose money and potentially a sale upon listing his house on the market. Let’s face it, the driveway is the first thing a home buyer will see upon arriving at this home, and having a good first impression was important to him.

He also said that he wasn’t selling the home just yet and felt that his driveway was the first thing everyone else saw when visiting his home. He thought it would be better to have his driveway repaired now where he could enjoy it and not have the condition of the driveway be a drawback upon selling.

The cost was a factor here as well. He decided that installing Micro-topping was the best approach for its durability, color selection, and its textured slip-free surface. He also felt that the metal-reinforced micro-topping (Duracrete 2000) would be a selling point for his home later on.

This driveway was ground down with a walk-behind diamond concrete prep machine that removed all the loose and deteriorated concrete from the driveway. The control joints were filled with repair mortar and then groomed back out with a four-inch grinder and a V-shaped diamond crack chaser wheel to provide crisp new control joints. It was then resurfaced with the Duracrete 2000 metal reinforced micro-topping in a textured finish.

This is a beautiful, durable spectacular looking finish that Mr. P can enjoy for as long as he lives in this home and will greatly benefit from upon the sale of his home down the road. The color chart above provides a large range of color to choose from and the samples in the background provide a look at the Duracrete 2000 Micro-topping System in a textured finish. There are many finishes also available to choose from to get that perfect and unique look for your project.

 

This article was written by Daniel Yalacki

 Concrete Restoration Systems LLC

If you would like us to help you with your project, please click here to schedule a free consultation for creative concrete solutions. If you can Imagine it, we can Create it!

 

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home backyard decorative Patio 1 - After 3
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Strip, Stain and Seal Concrete Restoration

Weatherproofing your Driveway to Make it Last Longer

 

The whole appearance of concrete can be enhanced with staining. Staining concrete adds warmth, character and a feel that can make the area come alive. Whether you have a driveway, patio, basement floor or entryway, staining is an inexpensive way to make your concrete dazzle.

The beauty of staining begins with the character and flaws of your existing concrete. When the concrete was installed, certain characteristics were also installed that make that concrete stain differently than other concrete slabs. The mottling you will get is greatly determined by these characteristics or flaws.

Even cracks can be turned from negatives to positives. Depending on the type of stain you use, say acid stain, will turn the cracks dark, sometimes even black, which makes the concrete look rustic, which is very popular in Colorado. Often when we have a cracked patio or walkway, we will run a crack chaser, which is a diamond cutting wheel on a grinder, and carve the slab up in a flagstone pattern.

Concrete Restoration is art and as such, the possibilities are endless! No two projects are the same. Each project will take you in a unique direction every time. Listening to the client to get a feel for what they like and don’t like is very important and will lead you to new inspiration and ideas.

We often just sit down and take the area in while listening to the customer talk about what they want and great, sometimes unexpected things begin to happen. The best part about what we do is finding something that is uniquely special to their project that they had never thought of and this process often brings this out. Sometimes the client knows exactly what they want, and we appreciate that too.

Consider using staining as an option for obtaining Decorative Concrete. There are plenty of types of stains out there to achieve any kind of look you can imagine. The beauty of having your staining done professionally is that you will have someone that knows what they are doing, has the proper equipment and will have knowledge of the many applications available in this industry to achieve the most awesome outcome for your project!

 

“Highly recommend Concrete Restoration Systems of Denver for concrete work. I could not believe the difference it made! Dan was the most persistent man I have met. He did not stop until all the old grey paint was removed. Long work days but completed in just one weekend. No more slipping when it is wet. Thank you, Dan!”
~ Steve – Aurora, Colorado

 

This article was written by:

Daniel Yalacki

Concrete Restoration Systems.com

If you would like us to help you with your project, please click here to schedule a free consultation for creative concrete solutions. If you can Imagine it, we can Create it!

 

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Decorative backyard concrete Patio - After 2
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Decorative Concrete Staining and Sealing

Making an Attractive Patio out of your existing Concrete

 

Nothing adds value like staining and sealing your stamped concrete. Illustrated above is a stamped concrete patio that is faded to an unattractive color. The client said they rarely went out on the patio because it was ugly and notably an undesirable place to retreat. Upon restoring this patio, the client set out to purchase all new patio furniture to make up for the lost years.

This patio, was pretty blasé, the wrong color and had a very shallow or nonexistent joint that provides the flagstone pattern. To begin, we stripped the existing sealer off with a stripping agent. We then used a four-inch right angle grinder and a diamond crack chaser tool to bring out the superficial and faint joints that made up the flagstone pattern. We then applied an Exterior Concrete Dye in Walnut to bring out a warm, earthy Coloradan look. To finish off, we sealed it with a High-End Acrylic Sealer with UV Inhibitors for longevity.

The difference is amazing and this beautiful patio is now a truly inviting place to entertain! Here at Concrete Restoration System, we find that every project has its own uniqueness and character that we build on! That is why we can say that no two projects are alike.

We invite you to call us for a free consultation for ideas for all your concrete renovation needs. Stay tuned for other Decorative Concrete Solutions!

If you would like us to help you with your project, please click here to schedule a free consultation for creative concrete solutions. If you can Imagine it, we can Create it!

Authored by:

Daniel L. Yalacki

CEO/President of Concrete Restoration Systems

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Quartz Decorative Driveway- After full
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Quartz Resurfacing Systems

The best solution to wearing and old driveways

 

Deteriorating driveways are a common problem here in Colorado. Particularly spalling issues, where the concrete surface appears to be flaking off. We have posted several articles about what causes this phenomenon in recent months, but this article is intended to provide solutions.

In both the photographs above and the video below, you can see where the surface of the concrete is spalling, leaving random circular spalls of flaking concrete on the concrete surface. One out of every three driveways here in Colorado has spalling. Until now, the only solution available was tearing out and replacing the concrete.

Concrete Restoration Systems has developed several exclusive alternatives for fixing this problem that are beautiful and extremely durable. In this article, we will be looking at the benefits of Quartz Resurfacing Systems.

Quartz is the fourth hardest mineral known to man behind diamonds! This is truly the most durable system you can install over your driveway, patio, walkway or entryway.  Any concrete surface is perfect for this quartz epoxy system!

Quartz is also a beautiful material and available in over 3,200 colors to customize any project to the client’s liking. Resurfacing with Quartz avoids the hassle and mess of tear-out and replacement. It also has a better, stronger and substantially more beautiful decorative finish than plain gray concrete. We recommend Quartz Resurfacing System because they immediately increase the value of your home or business.

 

This article was written by Daniel L.Yalacki

Concrete Restoration Systems

Contact us at 303-435-3334 for a free consultation.

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Decorative concrete patio with custom lines carved
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Cracked Concrete Renovation Ideas

One of the most common questions we are asked is if cracked concrete can be repaired. The industry’s answer is yes, but with disclaimers. Typically, concrete is about 4 inches thick and often is reinforced with steel. If 4 inches of steel-reinforced concrete can crack, there’s a pretty good chance that anything you place on top of it will crack as well. It’s called mirroring when the crack resurfaces as the underlying crack continues to move.

Using epoxy injections to weld the two slabs back together is fairly successful, but you can still see the epoxy repair. Contractors will often cover the repairs using Micro-toppings a polymer, sand and cement application applied in the desired color. Micro-toppings are extremely versatile to include stone and textured finish in an endless array of colors and stains.

There is also Quartz/Epoxy Systems that are far more durable made from the 4th hardest mineral below diamonds. Quartz/Epoxy injections are made with an epoxy base. Combining epoxy injection and Quartz/Epoxy finish makes for a durable surface.

Another popular re-surfacing system is Grind, Stain, and Seal. These are exceptionally beautiful applications that use the characteristics of your existing concrete along with the natural mottling of the stains to make a unique and beautiful work of art. This application does not require a topical application other than the stain and sealer. Most clients like its look even if there are some cracks showing. It looks a little more rustic and in Colorado, that is usually a good thing!

You might be thinking, “hold on, didn’t you say that with Epoxy injection, the cracks could mirror back through the re-surfacing application?” There is always that possibility, but not always. You might also be thinking, “well, then what can I do?” To properly answer that question, we need to review why the crack could potentially come back which requires a little more knowledge about concrete itself.

Beyond the concrete’s PSI (how many sacks of cement is in each yard of concrete) it’s important to know what type of steel was used to mesh or re-bar. It’s also important to know the size of the aggregate that was used to make the concrete. However, the most important deterrent to avoid cracks is the control joints. You might also ask, “what are control joints?”

As a kid, you may remember skipping down the sidewalk and jumping over the cracks to avoid breaking your Mother’s back. These cracks are control joints. In a walkway, they are spaced about every 4 feet. In large concrete areas such as patios and driveways, they have a maximum spacing of 10 feet. If you have a greater than 10′ x 10′ slab or no control joints at all, you will get cracks.

Injecting them with Epoxy will help weld the slabs back together. If you don’t have control joints, these cracks will invariably mirror back into the slab. So once you inject the Epoxy, it’s best to create control joints near the repair or better yet, in the repair. This is accomplished by using a small right angle grinder and a diamond crack chasing blade. It is a “V” shaped blade that creates joints that look like the joints on your driveways and walkways.

Here at Concrete Restoration Systems LLC, we use the disadvantages of concrete slabs to our advantage. Take this residential patio below that was about 30 feet by 30 feet wide and had no control joints. If you look closely, you can see cracks running in every direction. To fix this, we used a right angle grinder and a diamond crack chaser and started with the existing cracks opening them up to create a joint. We then craved a flagstone pattern off those main cracks creating a unique stone pattern.

We then injected the epoxy into the cracks or joints to weld the slabs back together. You could use any of the applications described above, but for this patio, we chose Grind, Stain and Seal application with a smokey beige stain. We then stained all of the joints with a midnight black exterior concrete dye and it made an incredible difference. You can’t even tell where the original cracks were. If there is any future movement, it will be in those control joints and undetectable.

“It’s not just concrete renovation, it is art!”

If you would like us to help you with your project, please click here to schedule a free consultation for creative concrete solutions. If you can Imagine it, we can Create it!

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backyard decorative concrete patio finished
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The Art of Concrete Restoration

How Decorative Concrete Can Increase the Curb Appeal of Your Home

The Art of Concrete Restoration often begins with considering the drawbacks of the failing concrete in order to provide a renovation solution. In the pictures above, the same patio is shown before and after our services. We were challenged with a large 40′ x 40′ patio that was severely cracked because no control joints were installed.

To those that do not know what control joints are, they’re found in the cracks between slabs and are spaced about every 4 feet. They are there in the hopes that as the concrete moves with settling or expansion, any crack that should develop will occur in these control joints since they are the weakest point in the slab.

Much like folding a piece of paper in half and creating a firm crease down the middle. Then take the paper from each side of the crease and tear it in half. Usually, the paper will tear right along the crease you placed down the middle of the paper. This is the same with concrete.

In larger concrete slabs such as driveways and patios, the control joints are placed at a maximum of 10-foot spacing. This patio had no control joints whatsoever and was a maze of cracks in every direction crisscrossing and settling everywhere. For added fun, this patio was also painted yellow.

As discussed above, we look at the issues in the concrete to provide a solution. Our solution was to make the existing cracks into control joints that can continue to move in the future. These cracks are control joints the concrete has made for itself and will use in the future upon any further movement in the slab.

Here we used a 4” right angle grinder and a diamond “V” shaped crack chaser tool and carved joints into the existing cracks and then all over the slab to disguise the crack pattern. The existing cracks were filled with crack repair Epoxy to hide them. The paint on the patio was removed with a diamond cutting concrete prep machine and the patio was stained with an antiquing for a warm stone appearance. Then, we stained all of the control joints with a midnight black exterior dye and sealed the patio with a high-end Siloxane Modified Methyl Methacrylate sealer. This is now a beautiful, stunning decorative patio that costs less than tear out and replacing with plain gray concrete.

As I always say, we have never had the same two projects in over 40 years in the business. Each project has its own unique solution and appearance. As an Architect, I use my decades of experience to create a perfect solution for your concrete restoration needs.

The Art of Concrete Restoration combines superior structural intervention with creative and innovative ideas and artistry to produce not just structurally sound concrete, but beautiful functioning works of art.

I invite you to use our free consulting services to explore the unlimited and creative solutions we can offer you!

 

If you would like us to help you with your project, please click here to schedule a free consultation for creative concrete solutions. If you can Imagine it, we can Create it!

 

Offering:

  • Micro-Toppings
  • Stained Concrete
  • Decorative Concrete
  • Epoxy Quartz Systems
  • Grind, Acid Stain and Seal
  • Interior Concrete Restorations
  • Exterior Concrete Restorations
  • Commercial and Residential

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refinishing concrete driveway process
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Replacing vs Repairing Driveways with Decorative Concrete

Why Repairing Your Driveway Can Save You Thousands!

 

Asking yourself, “should I replace my deteriorated driveway or can it be repaired?” Ask any concrete replacement contractor and they will tell you that it must be replaced. And until recent years, tear out and replace was the only option. But today, there are many decorative concrete solutions that are now available.

While there are many types of systems such as grinding, acid staining and sealing, the beautiful quartz driveways come in every color imaginable and are extremely durable. Micro-topping systems are also awesome alternatives to replacement.

Better yet, you will have beautiful decorative concrete for a fraction of the cost of a tear-out and plain gray replacement. Many clients also worry that with a tear-out and replacement, they could have the same problems again with the concrete falling apart. There is no guarantee that it won’t happen again after replacement.

In fact, one out of three driveways in Colorado will encounter the same results that caused the consumer to have to replace the driveway in the first place. You might be asking yourself, “wouldn’t I be better off putting money into decorative concrete that will last and have greater value for less than replacement?”

The answer is simple: yes! There are so many beautiful, durable and greater lasting alternatives! Micro-topping your driveway is only one alternative to restoring your driveway!

Contact Concrete Restoration Systems LLC as a great source for information on the latest driveway restorations techniques and applications serving the Greater Denver Area for nearly 40 years!

If you would like us to help you with your project, please click here to schedule a free consultation for creative concrete solutions. If you can Imagine it, we can Create it!

Article by Daniel Yalacki:

President/CEO

Concreterestorationsytems.com

Denver, Colorado

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