Concrete is used all around the world for countless applications, but unfortunately, it’s inevitable that concrete will deteriorate over time. Roots can push concrete sections out of alignment, freeze/thaw and de-icing chemicals can be damaging, and the wear and tear of normal traffic can take a toll. This guide on how to patch concrete will provide you with detailed steps to ensure your concrete repair will get your surface looking as good as new.
Concrete is a composite material, typically composed of aggregate (rock, gravel, and sand), Portland cement, and water. Many concrete repair products may not include a coarse aggregate, only a fine aggregate like sand, and we refer to these as repair mortars. Concrete repair products are generally formulated to address the repair of concrete and generally classified as to specific application (horizontal, vertical, overhead, structural, cosmetic, etc.).
Before getting started, here are some tips and tricks on how to patch concrete:
- When mixing concrete, a general rule of thumb is to follow the directions on the product label
- If water is required, mix the dry repair product into the water
- Ideal weather conditions are between 50°F and 80°F with no rain
- There are many types of concrete repair products for various purposes, so be sure to pick the best one for your application
- No matter the size of the repair, helpful tools to have on deck include a brush and/or broom, trowel, and water
8-Step Guide on How to Patch Concrete
1. Clean area of debris, pebbles, grass, and other loose pieces of dirt
When learning how to patch concrete, it’s essential to start with a sound concrete, and a roughened and clean surface so the new concrete repair material can fully adhere to the existing concrete. Remove any punky concrete making sure any lose and soft concrete is removed. This generally creates a roughened surface which is essential for developing a mechanical bond of the patching material. Cleaning surfaces can be done by hand, with a hose, a broom, sandblasting and sometimes a pressure washer for harder-to-reach places. Make sure there’s strong concrete on all sides and all possible debris and loose pebbles are removed.
2. Wet the surface being repaired
Before applying the concrete mixture, dampen the surface of the existing concrete. Remove any sitting water.
3. Prepare the concrete mixture
Depending on the type of concrete repair mix, prepare the mixture according to the instructions. If allowed, with reference to mixing instructions, add water little by little until you get the correct consistency.
4. Create a barrier for the concrete to form to with scrap wood
If necessary form up any open sides that require a clean edge. Follow ICRI/SCI guideline for properly preparing the edges of concrete repairs.
5. Pour the mixture and fill the holes
Pour or hand apply the concrete mixture on the desired surface and use a trowel to spread the concrete evenly. Allow concrete to stiffen enough to finish surface. For a smooth surface, use a steel trowel, and for a rougher and textured finish, use a broom to score the top and let it dry. Rinse tools immediately with water.
6. Allow the new concrete mixture to dry
Read the product’s instructions for appropriate curing time required before placing back into service.
7. Seal the patched concrete
8. You’re all done!
Once the concrete is dry, remove the barriers and get back to business per usual. With these steps completed, you’ve learned how to patch concrete!
For over 60 years, UNIQUE Paving Materials has been recognized as the nation’s leading supplier of pavement maintenance materials. We have the industry experience to help you with questions along the way, so be sure to reach out to our team if you need any assistance.
Products for Concrete Repair at UNIQUE Paving Materials
When it comes to concrete repair, UNIQUE Paving Materials has a wide variety of repair products for various applications.
- UNIQUE® High-Performance, Fast-Set Mortar – This concrete repair solution is a commercial-grade, quick-setting material designed for high-performance applications and freeze-thaw durability through tough weather conditions. Typically used on bridge decks, sidewalks, and footings, this hydraulic cement will deliver outstanding bond strength on just about any type of concrete surface.
- UNIQUE® Highway DOT Concrete Mix – This fast-setting highway concrete mix is a blend of fast setting cement, 3/8” stone or gravel, sand, and performance-enhancing additives to maximize concrete repairs. This mix is ideal for repairing deep patches on roadways, parking garages, loading docks and much more.
- UNIQUE FLEXICRETE® XP Polymer-Modified Mortar – This trowel-grade mortar is composed of a non-shrink polymer modified formula that is simple to use. It resists deicing salts and abrasion resistant. Great for interior floor slab surface repairs.
- UNIQUE® Overhead and Vertical Mortar – Our polymer-modified, high-strength material offers no-sag and excellent bond, ensuring long-lasting repairs in challenging locations. This can be used internally or externally to patch concrete, mortar, brick, stone, and mortarless stack-and-bond applications.
- UNIQUE POSTCRETE GROUT/WS® Hydraulic Cement – This ultra-fast-setting hydraulic cement stops water or seepage through holes or cracks and gets stronger as it tries to penetrate the repair. With a unique combination of proprietary ingredients, it can be used for countless applications with minimal set-up time.
- UNIQUE® Pourable Concrete Crack Filler – This concrete crack filler is designed to fill joints and cracks in driveways, parking lots, and other concrete surfaces. It easily adheres to pavement, is free of coal tar, and has excellent flexibility in cold weather.
- REJUVIT® Concrete Resurfacer – This concrete resurfacer revives and seals concrete from water, moisture, and deicing salts. This cost-effective solution can withstand every climate, season, and weather condition, leaving your concrete as good as new.
If you have any questions about how to patch concrete or our concrete repair products, be sure to reach out to one of our team members and we will be happy to help you find the right solution you’re looking for.
Contact UNIQUE Paving Materials for Your Concrete Repair
At UNIQUE Paving Materials, we understand that learning how to patch concrete is not an everyday task. This is why we prioritize our customers and continuously provide them with premium services and products, along with help whenever they need it.
Contact our team today for more information about patching concrete, or to place an order for our concrete repair products. We look forward to helping you with your repairs!