How To Break Concrete

What You'll Need
Work Gloves
Eye and Ear Protection
Shoes with Steel Toes
Reciprocating Saw
Metal Cutting Blade
Pry Bar
Concrete Removal Implements (Dumpster, Wheelbarrow)

Learning how to break concrete is a process both time consuming and physically taxing. Knowing how to get the job done is always a good thing. Large jobs involving breaking up concrete may be best left to professionals, but you can learn how to break concrete yourself with these simple steps.

Step 1: Determine Concrete Removal

You should begin the process by determining how much concrete to remove during the process. You should make sure that you have a large enough truck or dumpster to handle the amount of concrete that you plan on removing.

Step 2: Wear Safety Clothing as Needed

Make sure that you are properly outfitted in safety gear and apparel including work gloves, ear protection, steel toed shoes, and eye protection. Make sure that you inspect the jackhammer at this time to make sure that it is properly set up and prepared for use.

Step 3: Prepare Jackhammer

Turn the compressor on and grasp your jackhammer firmly using both hands on its handle. Make sure that you are facing away from anything that can be damaged as a result of flying debris such as windows. Make sure that the jackhammer is positioned between 6 inches to 12 inches away from the concrete's edge. Hold the jackhammer vertically, or straight up-and-down. Engage the jackhammer's trigger, holding it in, and then drive it straight down and back up to use it properly.

Step 4: Use Pry Bar

Now you should insert your pry bar into the cracks that you created using the jackhammer. The pry bar should be grasped firmly and tightly with both hands, and pieces of the concrete should be pried away. Lift the pieces of concrete that you remove away from the site and put them in the truck or wheelbarrow for safe removal.

Step 5: Repeat the Process

The process should be repeated as many times as necessary for complete concrete removal. If there is wire or rebar reinforcement in the concrete, then you should use a reciprocating saw to remove the reinforcement from the concrete. Now you can alternate between the jackhammer and the pry bar to remove the remainder of the concrete from the site.

The purpose of the jackhammer is to break the concrete into sizable pieces so that they can be pried up and taken away from the site. You should only break the concrete into sizable pieces that can be removed, rather than trying to break it up into smaller and less easily managed pieces.