How to Repair Concrete Sidewalk Chips and Holes
Knowing how to repair a concrete sidewalk can come in handy. Chips or holes in a sidewalk can not only be unsightly, it can create dangerous conditions. It's easy to trip over a hole, or not see a large chip. Fixing a chip can also save the sidewalk from further degradation.
Step 1 - Clean and Assess the Area
The first thing you need to do is determine how bad the hole or chip is. A larger chip will require more work. You will be able to assess the damage more effectively if you use the tire pump to blow any debris and dust out of the area. Holes that are smaller than a few inches in diameter won't require you to do any additional chipping.
Step 2 - Prepare the Chip
If the hole or chip is larger than a few inches in diameter, it will be necessary to undercut the area. For this you will need to use the hammer and chisel to make the bottom of the chip or hole wider than the top. This will take some work and require you to angle the chisel in the existing hole as to not cause more damage to the surface. Use the hard bristle brush to even out the surface, and the tire pump to blow any concrete dust out of the area.
Step 3 - Apply Adhesive
While adhesive isn't absolutely necessary, it will help the patch to adhere evenly. Most concrete adhesive is a latex material, and can be purchased at any hardware supply store at the same time the concrete is purchased. The adhesive usually doesn't need to be mixed, and can just be applied directly from the container according to the manufacturers directions. You will likely need to prime the adhesive for the concrete by applying a thin layer of wet concrete to the adhesive.
Step 4 - Add Concrete Mix
Once the adhesive and primed area have dried you can start to fill the hole with the concrete mix. If you are working with a chip, your grout knife will work best to help you get an even coverage area. You will want to slowly build up the concrete, about a quarter inch at a time. This will allow you to get an even finish and will allow the concrete to settle as it needs to.
Step 5 - Even it Up
Use the grout knife to go back and clean up the area. You can also use the hard bristle brush to remove any concrete that may have gotten out of the patch area. The original finish to the sidewalk may be hard to match, but you can work with the texture to try to get a similar finish. The color will darken as the concrete dries.
Step 6- Cover the Area
Cover the area for a few days to prevent people from walking over it. Depending on the size of the hole, the concrete may be dry to the touch in just a matter of hours. It will still need time to cure, so follow the concrete manufacturers suggestion for cure times.