Contracting Mythbusters–Concrete Edition!

Concrete driveway

“Nothing is set in stone.”

This is often a reassuring denial of permanency when beginning a new venture–except of course, if that venture is literally setting stone. More specifically, concrete. Last winter was a rough one, and many a Midwestern driveway, flat roof, and parking lot was left looking a little worse of wear. Many home and business owners are being forced to consider concrete resurfacing. Below are a few concrete resurfacing myths that we would like to debunk before you begin:

“Eh. It’s Not Worth It/I’ll wait”
Since most concrete surfaces like driveways and lots are outside of our immediate living space, repair can be a tempting thing to put off. After all, the average cost of concrete driveway resurfacing is upwards of $3,000 dollars–a sizable chunk of change and not easily parted with. However, any exterior repair initiative is a solid financial investment, and typically earns back 75% of its cost upon resale of the property. What’s more, concrete resurfacing specifically can become a safety issue. Pot holes and cracks in the rock caused by ice, rock salt, and tree roots can lead to a lot of blown out tires and sprained ankles. The costs of these emergencies in turn could add up to significantly more than a couple thousand dollars in the long run.

“Concrete Resurfacing Is Hard (Or Easy)”

With any DIY project it can be easy to both over and underestimate the difficulty. While we would never want anyone to feel inept or powerless working on their own property, a lot of DIY enthusiasts go off half caulked on projects without doing thorough research. In the case of concrete resurfacing the devil is in the details. For instance, many will pour the concrete but use an imperfect sand-to-mix ratio or neglect the base material. Others wont allow for adequate rain runoff when they measure out the slopes of their driveways.

If you’re on the opposite side of the spectrum however and have no idea where to begin–have no fear! There is help in the form of DIY tools such as quick mixes, concrete stamps, and instructional youtube videos, plus every kind of manual you could possibly want floating around online. And if that’s beyond you, reasonably priced concrete contractors are just a Google search away.

“Concrete Is Ugly. Why Bother With It?”

Ugly, maybe. We get it–it’s grainy and grey. But it’s sturdy and cheap as well, and fortunately for you aesthetically inclined, there are any number of serviceable cement stain brands on the market to help pretty up your exterior concrete surfaces. If you could really care less about the leg work of concrete resurfacing but want to host one heck of a tar beach barbecue, let the staining and finishing process be your motivation for getting to work on this worthy outdoor home improvement project–and Good Luck!

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