Concrete, it surrounds us everywhere. It is what provides foundations to homes, roadways, driveways, sidewalks, and patios. The list for what concrete is used for goes on and on. Concrete is considered the most used material in the world and is typically readily available. However, one of concrete’s downfalls is that it does not last forever, especially in a harsh winter climate like Minnesota’s.
A quick little rundown about concrete.
It has been around a long, long time. The first concrete-like structures were built around 6500 BC in the regions of southern Syria and northern Jordan. Initially the material and process they used to create the concrete was obviously a bit different back than it is today. However, the concept is still there: to keep the mix as dry or low-slump as possible, and to avoid excess water which creates weaknesses and voids into the concrete. Nowadays the material that is used to make concrete consists of water, a type of aggregate like rock, sand or gravel, and Portland cement. Typically, people find that the terms concrete and cement are interchangeable, however cement is the powder form that acts as the binding agent when it is mixed with the water and aggregate to make the concrete.
How long does concrete usually last for and what can cause a concrete failure? The lifespan of modern concrete really all depends on the structure, proper maintenance, and the environment. Concrete can last anywhere from 25, 30, 50 and even up to 100 years! With cold climates however, the lifespan may be shorter due to the freezing and thawing cycles it can endure, causing cracking, popping, and heaving over the years. Concrete can also fail from external factors such as chemical reactions, physical impacts, fires or corrosive materials like road salts and chlorides.
If you find that your concrete driveway, apron, sidewalk, or patio needs to be replaced because it is not holding up anymore, or you want to install concrete on your property, we can get the job done for you! We are able to install any type of concrete, whether it be a basic trowel finish or broomed finish. If interested in colors and patterns, we can do stamped concreted finishes as well. With our equipment, let us help you rip out the old and put in anew!