Concrete Overlay, Will It Last?

Old 04-04-09, 09:25 PM
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Concrete Overlay, Will It Last?


I'm considering a concrete overlay for my front stoop ans my main concern is, will it last? I have yet to see a single concrete repair of any type that has lasted. They all seem to fail. So, naturaly, I'm sceptical about concrete overlays. He'e my situation, I have a 13' x 8' front stoop that is solid and structurally sound but it has a few hairline cracks in it. The cracks run front to back and side to side and through the full thickness of the slab which is about 5". The stoop had wire reinforcement and rebar in it when it was poured and the cracks have not gotten any wider or worse over the past several years. I don't like how the cracks look so that is why I'm considering an overlay. Here are some of my questions: Will an overlay last, I live in the north east. What is the best type of overlay. Where can I find a someone competent to an overlay. Because of the cracks should a membrain be used between the stoop and the overlay. I haven't heard of any overlay companys that use membrains. Are there any better options available to hide the cracks besides a overlay. Thank you
Old 04-05-09, 03:13 AM
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Overlays are not meant to fix exterior cracks. Nothing can do that. However, you have an advantage that your cracks are only hairline and they aren't continuing to separate. Usually when the concrete is overlayed, the cracks will transfer up through the overlay as the concrete expands and contracts with temperature fluctuations. The overlay may hide them pretty well, especially if you pick a pattern and texture that could use the cracks to your advantage. For instance, a random stone pattern taped off so that the "mortar joints" run alongside the cracks. The cracks will just look like part of the pattern.
A membrane is not used with overlays. Unlike with a poured cap, you want the overlay to bond well to the slab underneath.
To find a contractor, go to They have a contractor locator that is very thorough. You can dial it down to your area. In my area, there are a lot of overlayers. You can also look in the yellow pages under concrete contractors, or ask your neighbors if they know of anyone.
As to your question of will it last: It all depends upon the skill of the contractor and how thorough his prep work is. like paint, a concrete coating must be properly installed for it to last awhile. Good luck.

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