A DIY Guide to Patching Concrete Driveway
Concrete is one of the best materials you can use for your driveway, given that it is both very strong and extremely durable. Still, your concrete surface will require regular maintenance if you want it to last a long time.
Unfortunately, though, potholes are pretty much inevitable no matter how well you maintain your concrete driveway, caused as they are by natural weather conditions and the weight of heavy vehicles. These pesky holes are cause for concern, as they have the potential to cause damage to your car’s wheels and even to the underlying structure of your driveway.
Thankfully, patching concrete driveway is a simple job. This guide will take you through the process step by step, from the materials you need to buy and how much they’ll cost to the approach you should take to get the best possible results.
DIY Concrete Driveway Repair: The Benefits
Before we jump into the how-tos, you might be wondering whether patching potholes yourself is a good idea. While it might sound like something that should be left to the professionals, in reality it is actually far more time and cost-effective to learn to do it yourself.
For one thing, it’s a pretty simple task once you have the right equipment and approach, and it will save you from having to spend unnecessary cash on contractor call-out fees, too. Plus, potholes are more likely to be patched in good time if you do the job yourself as soon as you spot them. This is particularly important because potholes left untreated can cause significant damage.
Once you get one pothole, you’re likely to start getting more if you don’t do something about the problem pronto. So, learn to tackle them head-on by patching your concrete driveway the moment you see signs of a hole. This will help you to avoid larger-scale issues that could lead to more costly repairs.
To ensure your concrete driveway remains in excellent condition for as long as possible, there are other DIY maintenance jobs you should consider carrying out on a regular basis. These include repairing cracks using rubberized crack sealant and re-sealing your driveway using a material similar to this asphalt emulsion sealer.
How to Repair Concrete Driveway
It is perfectly possible to repair potholes in concrete driveway yourself. However, to ensure you achieve only the best results, you must complete each step properly. When you do, you can be sure of a long-lasting, smooth finish and reinforced surface.
What Do You Fill a Pothole With?
You can’t fill a pothole properly without the right equipment and materials. So, first and foremost, you’ll need to buy some good quality bonding agent, which will usually be labeled as "pothole patch" or "cold patch". Many patch repair products will be suitable for use on both concrete and asphalt surfaces. Just double-check that the one you buy is guaranteed to work on the surface you have.
A lot of cold patch repair products have a reputation for only providing quick fixes that don’t last that long. While this is often true of all but the best cold patch asphalt repair products, high-performance products such as this BOND-X cold patch for concrete can facilitate permanent repairs when used correctly.
In addition, you’ll also need a shovel to scoop your product up with and a tamper with which to smooth it down. You should be able to purchase both of these products from your local hardware store for a very reasonable price.
What Safety Equipment Will I Need?
It’s important to ensure that you protect yourself when using industrial products, especially if you’ve never used them before. So, invest in some safety gloves, safety glasses, and a dust mask if you haven’t already got them to hand. Once again, these will likely be available from your local hardware store.
Ideally, you’ll keep all of these products stored together in your shed, so that you’re ready when a new pothole appears unexpectedly.
How Much Will It Cost?
The most expensive part of any driveway patch and seal job will be the patch filling material. While the safety and application equipment doesn’t need to cost you more than a couple of dozen bucks per item, your cold patch product will likely be priced at around $100 if you opt for something that promises a professional finish.
As such, once you have all of the additional equipment, it should only cost you around $100 to fill one large or a few smaller potholes. Although, if you shop with Pavemade, you can enjoy an instant 5% discount and free delivery across the US.
To compare, it could cost you up to $200 to get one pothole repaired by a contractor. And it’s not just money that calling out a contractor could cost you – having to make an appointment and await their arrival could also cost you valuable time. Given that potholes will just keep getting bigger and bigger, it’s in your best interests to repair the ones in your concrete driveway as quickly as possible.
How to Patch a Concrete Driveway
To fill potholes in your driveway and create a professional-looking, permanent finish, follow these three simple steps.
1. Clean Up
To ensure your cold patch pothole filler forms a long-lasting bond, you need to clean the concrete in and around the pothole. So, remove debris, water, and any excess concrete using either a broom or a hose.
Now to fill the pothole using a pre-mixed cold patch product that can guarantee great quality results. Do so by shoveling your material of choice straight from its container and into the hole in two-inch layers.
After applying each layer, grab your tamper and compress the patch. This will encourage successful bonding and lead to a flat, even finish that looks great and is kind to car wheels.
And that’s it. As long as the cold patch product you buy is fast-drying, your driveway should be ready to use again immediately.
Why Do I Need to Patch Potholes in Concrete Driveway?
If you learn how to complete concrete driveway patch and seal repairs yourself, you can keep the front of your home looking sleek and smart for many years to come. But, most importantly, you can avoid expensive structural damage being done to an already pricey surface.
So, it’s worth investing in the right products and storing them in the garage. That way, you can get cracking on any necessary repairs as soon as a new pothole appears.