Repairing a crumbled concrete walkway is important both for aesthetic and for safety reasons. The sooner damage is repaired the easier it will be to do the repairs. Therefore, any crumbling sections of walkway should be attended to as soon as you notice them. If the damage is left too long, the crumbling can destroy the walkway, requiring it to be completely re-poured. Below are the steps for basic repairs to a crumbling concrete walkway.
Tools and Materials Needed:
- Cold Chisel
- Shop vacuum and brush
- Polymer based cement resurfacer
- Caulking Gun
- Putty knife
- Duct tape
- Sledge hammer
- Flat trowel
- Masonry sealer
- Paint roller
- Safety glasses
- Dust mask
Step 1: Inspecting
Start off by carefully inspecting the walkway edges. Some areas may badly damaged enough to need complete replacement. Focus on the other areas for now. Depending on the extent of the repairs needed, acquire the tools and materials you will require.
Step 2: Minor Cracks and Crumbling Areas
If there are minor cracks and relatively small crumbling areas, you should act quickly. Use a stiff brush to remove the small stones and other residue. Then, fill such areas with concrete repair caulk, using a caulking gun. Once the cracks have been filled, smooth the caulk more neatly with a putty knife. You can also apply some concrete bonding agent with a small paintbrush. Either substance will repair the holes and prevent further damage from occurring in those particular patches.
Step 3: Protect Expansion Joints before Making Major Repairs
The concrete walkway will have gaps which are considered crucial to allow for expansion and contraction. These joints should be covered up with some duct tape so as to avoid filling them up. The duct tape will protect these parts until you remove it when the concrete mix in the nearby crumbled areas has set.
Step 4: Create a Frame
Frame the walkway's sides with boards. These will hold the cement patch in position to match the original dimensions of the walkway, rather than allowing the substance to spill over your lawn.
Step 5: Mixing
Mix the resurfacing concrete in a large bucket, by adding the adequate amount of water. Make sure to mix well, according to the instructions on the package.
Step 6: Preparing the Crumbled Concrete Edges
The crumbled edges need to be prepared properly before being repaired. Basically, use a chisel to strike the crumbled areas so as remove the falling pieces. If there are larger crumbling pieces, you should attempt to break them up into smaller, more manageable ones by using a sledge hammer. Then, once you have removed all the crumbling pieces, make sure to clean the dust and other residues from those areas before proceeding. Dump all the rocks, dust and other residue you removed in a bucket. A shop vacuum and brush will also greatly help in this task.
Step 7: Applying the Concrete Patch onto the Walkway
Now you can start applying the resurfacing concrete mix that you had mixed and prepared previously, onto the walkway's edges. Pour it little by little at these points, and then spread it smoothly over the respective area with a flat trowel. Next, remove any excess before it starts drying up. Afterwards, allow it to dry well.
Step 8: Sealing
Next, brush the walkway with a masonry sealer. This will act as a protective layer and enhance the longevity of the concrete walkway against damages, such as crumbling and similar problems. Make sure to allow enough time for the sealer to dry well before using the walkway.