As winter begins with full force, you'll soon find yourself spending many days shoveling your driveway. However, while a snowy season will be strenuous for you, it'll also be hard on your concrete driveway. Learn more about how cold weather will impact this surface, and how to keep yours in good shape this winter.
How Does Winter Weather Affect Concrete Driveways?
Concrete is an extremely durable material with high compressive strength. However, as snow and ice freeze and thaw on the surface repeatedly, it places additional stress on the material's chemical bonds, increasing the risk of cracks and deterioration.
The freeze and thaw cycle is further complicated when you use salt or deicing chemicals to clear off your driveway. Salt attracts water while also attacking the concrete's chemical bonds, accelerating deterioration. As concrete expands and contracts with temperature fluctuations, this deterioration increases the risk of cracking.
How Can You Minimize the Impact?
Protecting your concrete driveway from winter damage begins during the installation process. Concrete that has been reinforced with steel mesh or rods will have a higher tensile strength, which means it'll better resist the additional tension introduced by winter conditions. You can also protect your surface by applying a water-repellent coating to keep melting ice and snow from penetrating the surface and weakening the chemical bonds.
When cracks form, remove loose debris and water, then fill the holes with a concrete patching compound. Smoothing, texturing, and sealing the surface will prevent additional water damage and leave your driveway looking like new.
Whether you’re installing a concrete driveway or planning another project, you can count on Builder’s Concrete East in Windham, CT. Serving residents throughout Windham County for over 50 years, this concrete supplier produces a wide range of specialty mixes to meet the needs of any project. To learn more about their products, visit them online. To request a quote, call (860) 456-4111.