Skip to Main Content
joint sealant installation

Cracked Concrete

Cracked concrete is one of the easiest concrete problem signs to identify. If cracks are appearing on driveways, patios, or sidewalks, it’s time to call a professional.

Schedule Your Free Inspection

Have you ever seen a driveway that had small cracks running up and down various sections of the concrete? Maybe you’ve seen a driveway with huge cracks and crumbling sections of concrete. Whether the cracks are large or small, they’re indicative of a concrete issue. Here, we’ll outline everything you need to know about cracked concrete.

Soil Washout

When a yard experiences massive amounts of precipitation in any form, the moisture seeps into the soil and erodes it over time. Soil particles get washed away, and the structural integrity of the soil gets weaker. On top of erosion, precipitation also causes soil to become soft and muddy, meaning anything that puts pressure on the soil will likely sink. Any structure made of concrete is extremely heavy, and the washed-out soil is unable to support the weight of your concrete, so cracking occurs.

Dry Soil and Drought

On the opposite side of the spectrum comes dry soil. During a drought, or in a dry environment such as Colorado, soil lacks the moisture content needed to stay structurally sound. Tree roots can also cause dry soil as they suck moisture from the dirt in order to grow. Without this moisture, the soil shrinks in volume and becomes brittle – cracking and crumbling under almost any amount of pressure. 

When the soil shrinks like this, a gap opens between your concrete and the ground. Gravity takes over from here and causes sections of your concrete to sink. Since concrete is completely unbendable, the only thing left for it to do at this point is crack.

Poor Compaction

Poor compaction is easy to understand, as it simply refers to how tightly packed soil is. Soil that is properly compacted offers the best support for concrete structures resting on top of it. However, poorly compacted soil is always a possibility. Most often, this issue arises during the construction of a new building. Contractors may transport soil, also known as fill soil, from a separate location. During this process, soil has the potential to be poorly compacted as workers do their best to flatten the soil out in order to build on top of it. 

Poor compaction means there will be small pockets of air present throughout the soil. Over time, the soil will weaken under the weight of a concrete structure, and you’ll be left with cracked concrete that same as any other soil issue.

FAQs

Unfortunately, attempting a DIY fix for cracked concrete won’t work. Not only do you need special tools to complete the job (which are rarely available to the average homeowner), but a DIY fix won’t solve the actual problem causing cracked concrete in the first place. Since soil issues are the root cause, the solution needs to remove soil from the equation first and foremost. DIY options simply fail to address soil issues, so even if you fill in cracked concrete on your own, the ground is only going to continue to cause problems in the future.

You may have considered mudjacking as a solution for your cracked concrete. While this method was used in the past, it has become outdated and proven ineffective. Since cracked concrete is caused by weak soil, filling any void spaces with mud only leads to the same cycle. When the mud dries, it essentially turns into soil. If weather conditions are causing dryness or washout, the newly placed mud will experience the same problems and the concrete cracking cycle will begin all over again. Plus, mudjacking is a messy process and takes a long time to dry – sometimes taking up to 2 days before your concrete becomes functional again.

Cracks may be present on your concrete, but maybe you need extra confirmation that your concrete has become damaged. If you want a fairly simple way to tell if your concrete has become uneven, all you have to do is wait for rain. Typically, water will drain quickly from concrete through specially designed sections built into the concrete. However, even a bit of unevenness can cause water to pool on your sidewalk or driveway. If you notice puddles of water sticking around a day or two after a storm, then your concrete has likely become uneven.

Contact Us for a Free Inspection

Concrete problems are no fun for anyone. They can lower your home’s curb appeal, become tripping hazards, and lead to future foundation damage. Our experts are happy to inspect your home and identify the root cause of your concrete issues at no cost to you. 

We’ve served homeowners in Colorado for nearly 20 years, and we’re ready to serve you as well. Peak Structural proudly serves Denver, Colorado Springs, and the Pikes Peak Region. Contact us to receive a free estimate on our concrete lifting services and speak to one of our team members today!

Publish Date:

Last Modified Date:

PROUDLY SERVING THE PIKES PEAK REGION AND THE GREATER DENVER AREA

Colorado Springs Office

707 County Line Rd.
Palmer Lake, CO 80133

Denver Office

4686 Ivy St
Denver, CO 80216

Grand Junction Office

2575 U.S. 6 & 50, Unit A, Grand Junction, CO 81501