With winter just around the corner, here is something to think about. Concrete!
Come spring time you may find your driveway and walkway also known as flatwork concrete, crumbling or popping, this is called spalling. You may think this is due to bad concrete. In truth it is most likely due to salt intrusion. Using DEICING SALTS to assist ice and snow removal after those cold winter storms will introduce a chemical attack to your flatwork concrete breaking down the top layer of your concrete. By shoveling after each snowfall and before you drive on fresh fallen snow, snow removal becomes much easier without the need of deicing salts.
You may be thinking “but I don’t use deicing salt products and I have spalling”.
Due to winter road maintenance by Utah Department of Transportation (UDOT), salt brine is used to clear ice and snow from roads and freeways. While driving on Utah roads salt brine is collected and carried on your car, to home which then deposits onto your driveway. A parked car in the drive or ice and snow deposits from your car, without removing can cause a chemical attack causing spalling.
“What is the solution to prevent a salt attack”? Defend your concrete with a sealant!
Here are some protection suggestions:
- While pouring new concrete you can request a Cure and Seal product applied liberally over the entire surface so it forms a solid membrane. Then repeated after the first year then again every other year. According to Altaview concrete. www.altaviewconcrete.com
- Apply a sealant with a lithium hardener, solution. It becomes part of the structure by penetrating the surface. Go Green no harsh chemical used. A onetime application protects for life of the concrete. www.sealsourceinternational.com
- A fairly popular solution among homeowners is applying a Silane/Siloxane Sealer. There are two types. Water based and solvent based. Solvent based silane/siloxanes have been proven to bond better, last longer, and perform better in changing climates. They should be applied after the initial curing period and re-applied after one year then reapplied as needed. http://www.concretesealersreviews.com
- A tried and true sealant that is one of the oldest is Boiled linseed oil and Mineral Spirits. This should be applied after the initial curing period, again after one year then every other year after that.
By thinking ahead to defend against spalling the best plan of action is to protect your concrete from a Salt Attack. By applying a good dependable concrete sealant before fall weather turns the corner into winter, clearing your driveway and walkways of traveling ice and snow from roadways and NEVER USING DEICING SALTS you can avoid an unwanted spring surprise.