Concrete drivewa advice needed


  #1  
Old 06-08-08, 09:34 AM
D
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: S. E. Michigan
Posts: 56
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
Question Concrete drivewa advice needed

Starting tommorow I am getting estimates on replacing our old asphalt driveway with cement. We live in S.E. Michigan.
I am looking foe advice on such things as:
Base for cement..........compacted or sand?
Reinforcement..............steel or mesh?
Cement thickness...........5" min?
Cement mix................what psi level for our climate?
Warranties..........from the contracter?
from the cement supplier?
Any advice including additional things I should know would be very much appreciated.
Rich
 
  #2  
Old 06-08-08, 10:52 AM
P
Member
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 1,396
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
1) Compacted stone is better than sand.
2) Both fiber and steel have their advantages, so if in doubt use both. The fiber will only add about $6-$10 per yard, so on a 10 yard driveway it's an extra $100 tops. Cheap insurance.
3) 4" is standard for a concrete driveway, but if you expect heavy vehicles (dump trucks, garbage trucks, moving vans, etc.) you should go thicker.
4) 4,000 psi, air-entrained, no greater than a 5.5 inch slump.
5) I'd be surprised if you get any kind of warranty against cracking. The concrete WILL crack, probably within 5 days but hopefully in the crack control joints they will cut. The only thing they could really warrantee against would be excessive separation between cracked portions of the slab.
Also doubtful as to any warranty against spalling or delamination. If you use any type of de-icing chemical or salt, that warranty would be voided anyway.
6) The concrete company will warrant their product to be free from defects when delivered, but will assume no responsibility for anything once the contractor signs the batch ticket saying that it was properly delivered.

To protect yourself: Make certain that you are there when the driveway is poured and finished. Take photos, or better yet video of everything that goes on from the time the truck arrives. If they add a lot of water to the truck and re-mix, have it on tape. (adding a lot of water on site is bad).
Ask the contractor for a copy of the batch ticket that he has to sign. It will tell you all kinds of useful information such as time of batching, time arrived on site, any water added (if the driver writes it in like he's supposed to), driver's name and truck number, mix design, any additives, etc.
If the finishers add water to the surface to work the concrete easier, that's bad too. It is one of the main causes of delamination because it makes a weak paste on the surface (high water:cement ratio).
There should not be any unjointed sections of the driveway larger than about 10' x 10', or 12' x 12' tops. The joints need to be at least 1/4 as deep as the slab is thick. For example, a 4 inch thick slab needs a crack control joint at least 1 inch deep.
Good luck!

Pecos
 
  #3  
Old 06-08-08, 12:06 PM
D
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: S. E. Michigan
Posts: 56
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
Pecos,
Thank you very much for the info, it is really appreciated.
We are elderly(but not stupid), and we want to insure we get the best job we can. We don't plan on doing this again in our lifetime.
Thanks again,
Rich
 
 

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
 
Ask a Question
Question Title:
Description: