The knowledge about how to seal concrete driveway cracks will help you preserve the look of your home or help you update it. Regardless of your mission, unsightly problem cracks in your concrete driveway can end up being more than a minor annoyance. Concrete driveway cracks are something which shouldn’t be neglected or else you may end up finding the driveway increasingly broken and full of cracks; these cracks can lead to serious damage of the driveway or to people who walk across it.
Step 1 - Clean the Area
Sweep the area thoroughly using a broom or a brush. Use screwdrivers or knives to remove the loose concrete from the cracks. This will help clean the cracks. Wash the area. Spray enough water to the cracks. If the crack is stained with grease or oil, use detergent to wash the area. Once cleaned, rinse with water and allow the crack to dry completely. Pressure washers can also be used to wash the driveways.
Step 2 - Seal Concrete Driveway Cracks
Apply concrete sealers. Choosing the right sealer depends on the size of the cracks. The different options for sealing hairline cracks are caulk, grout, vinyl patch, epoxy concrete patch, concrete paints, etc. Larger cracks can be sealed using all the above products except concrete paints. Larger cracks are often sealed by a mixture of grout and Portland cement. Remember to wear rubber gloves while you apply the sealer.
Apply a thin layer of adhesive. This will help in making the seal stronger. Fill the crack with the sealer. Once the crack is filled, use a scraper to smooth the surface. For cracks greater than half inch, the cracks need to be chiseled before being sealed. Undercut the crack using a chisel or a hammer such that the bottom of the crack is wider than the top. This is necessary since it makes the seal stronger. After undercutting the crack, clean the crack thoroughly with a screwdriver and brush. Fill the crack with the sealer. Let the sealer settle in the crack for few minutes. Smooth the surface using the scraper.
Step 3 - Let the Concrete Seal Dry
Allow the seal to dry. In case of larger cracks, place a damp cloth over the seal and let the cloth remain damp for two or three days. Allow sufficient time for the concrete seal to dry.
Step 4 - Check if the Cracks are Still Visible
Once the sealing is dry, check to see if any of the cracks are still visible. In case of visible cracks, refill the crack, smooth the surface and give sufficient time for drying. Keep the driveway free from traffic for at least 24 hours. Also, make sure there is no water or rainfall falling on the driveway for at least a day; the water can damage the concrete seal.
With proper sealing of concrete driveway cracks regularly, you can maintain the driveways for a long time without having to replace it completely.