How to Install Expansion Joints in Patterned Concrete
If you want install expansion joints in patterned concrete to help prevent cracks and splitting, you can use this easy step by step guide to learn how to properly install the joints. Installing expansion joints in patterned concrete is easier than you think. So, let's get started.
Step 1 - Choose Installation Spots for Expansion Joints
First, you'll need to choose the places where you want to install the expansion joints in your pattered concrete walk or slab. Generally speaking, the sections of patterned concrete should be no wider than about 15 feet before you install a control or expansion joint. However, it is generally considered better to place the expansion joints about 8 feet apart.
Step 2 - Create Marking Lines
Use a measuring tape and marking pencil to create marking lines that are about half an inch apart every 8 feet or so.
Step 3 - Cut Out the Lines
Next, take the concrete saw and cut out the lines that you created with the marking pencil. When using the concrete saw to cut along the lines, make sure that you cut about half way through the depth of the patterned concrete pieces. Continue cutting along the marking lines until you reach the end of the patterned concrete walk or slab.
Step 4 - Remove Cut Out Concrete Pieces
Take a hammer and chisel and begin to break out the concrete inside the marking lines you cut with the concrete saw. As you break out the concrete, place it into an appropriate container so that you can dispose of it properly later.
Step 5 - Sweep and Clean Joint Seams
Use a regular straw broom to sweep out as much of the broken concrete and dust as possible. Then, take a wet and dry a shop vacuum to vacuum out as much of the concrete dust as you can. The joint filler compound will work best if this seams are clean and free of dirt and dust.
Step 6 - Fill Expansion Joint Seams
Take the tip of joint filler compound and install it on the caulk gun. Then, use the caulk gun to fill the newly created expansion joint with the joint filler compound. With filling the joint, fill the seam until it is completely full and the top of the joint filler compound is level with the patterned concrete on either side of the seam.
Step 7 - Smooth the Seams
To smooth the seams between the pattered concrete, you can use your finger. However, it is better to take a regular tablespoon that has been soaked in warm water and smooth the top of the joint filler compound to get a smoother finish. If you use a spoon to smooth the filler compound, be sure not to compress it too much or the surface will be uneven.