Replace wood spacers in sidewalk

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  #1  
Old 05-11-18, 11:08 AM
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Replace wood spacers in sidewalk

The sidewalk around my house has wooden spacer/expansion joints and lately grass has been growing between the wood and concrete regularly. Earlier this spring one of the larger spacers came out and the lower half was rotted out.

In the past I've used some self-leveling expansion joint stuff on sidewalks, but this is larger than 1 inch in some places which is the limit from most of the compounds I remember seeing.

Should I try to cut new boards similar in size and then use a compound to seal between them? Remove the wood entirely and use foam to fill it and then seal?

Other recommendations?

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  #2  
Old 05-11-18, 11:43 AM
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It's not hard to remove them. Hammer, pry bar, large screwdriver, etc and just dig them out.

You could replace them with 5/4 (actual thickness 1") deck boards cut to the right width or regular 3/4" treated lumber also cut down if needed. Which one you use depends on the actual thickness you need. After cutting you would need to apply multiple coats of "Copper Green" or a similar wood preservative, since these boards are not rated for ground contact in most cases and would rot relatively quickly.
 
  #3  
Old 05-11-18, 11:45 AM
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If you replace them I'd look into some type of composite material if you can find the right thickness. At least they will not rot and you will have some colors to choose from!
 
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Old 05-11-18, 11:57 AM
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Good idea! I imagine composite deck boards would work perfectly. Like TREX or Veranda?
 
  #5  
Old 05-14-18, 03:58 PM
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Oops, I'm not getting e-mail notifications of replies.

Thanks for the replies. What about a pressure treated or ceder board that is more likely to withstand ground contact?

Do I still use the gap filler between the concrete and boards since I can't get them as tight as they were new?
 
  #6  
Old 05-14-18, 04:21 PM
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I would probably leave them. Use a diamond grinder and go down each side to clean out dirt and weeds. Blow out with compressed air. Then pour some grey self levelling Sacrete Crack filler or Loctite S20 over the top of them. Might need to make a dam on each end out of sheet metal.

If the wood is too high you could chisel 1/4" off the top before filling them up.

I would think the wood is already pressure treated.

Don't use foam.
 
  #7  
Old 05-15-18, 02:12 PM
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I wasn't planning on using a spray foam, but those foam ropes for filling the gaps.
 
  #8  
Old 05-15-18, 02:27 PM
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Foam backer rod. Use it if your gaps are 1/4" or more.
 
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