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Remove old concrete slab before grading or just grade above before deck goes in?

Remove old concrete slab before grading or just grade above before deck goes in?


Old 07-24-15, 01:58 PM
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Remove old concrete slab before grading or just grade above before deck goes in?

I'm planning on building a 16x16 low level deck in my backyard and recently removed the existing steps/landing which had been sitting on a concrete slab (or two side-by-side). Since this area will be covered by the deck I am planning, I am wondering whether it would be best to (i) break up and remove the concrete and then regrade before putting my deck posts in or (ii) leaving the concrete as-is and simply grading on top with some soil and/or gravel?


- there are two adjacent concrete pads: one appears older and is about 5x4. I can easily pry pieces up (they are already fractured) with a shovel. There is about 2-3" between this portion of the pad and the foundation...it is relatively level; the other, newer pad is slightly bigger (5x5) and about 4" thick. It has started to settle and slope towards the house's foundation.

- We have been in our house for 3 yrs and have had some *minor* water issues in our basement along this wall (cinder block foundation). I imagine this is due to the grading/slope of the concrete pad (especially the newer one) which is directing water towards the house. We have only had issues during one week of intense rain and then a bit during the spring thaw a year ago. We have since installed eavestroughs (which the house didn't previously have) to keep all the water coming off the roof from pooling here.

- House is about 50 yrs old.

- The total area of cement is about 9x9 (one 5x5 pad, one 5x4 pad).

- Given the age of the house and these pads and the fact that we haven't had any major water/foundation issues, part of me wonders if it would be best to not start messing too much with the grade and disturbing the ground by removing these concrete pads. On the other hand, now will be the easiest time to do any work here, before the deck goes in.

What do people suggest? Once this decision is out of the way, what sort of material (soil, gravel, etc) would you suggest I grade with?


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Old 07-26-15, 07:07 PM
BridgeMan45's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: USA
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If it was mine, that concrete would be broken up and removed, before installing a low-level deck. The last thing anyone needs is for water pooling under the deck, because it could harbor all sorts of not-do-nice insect critters while also contributing to an early demise of the deck's lumber.

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