Follow these simple steps to repair concrete

Q: I have some concrete steps leading to my front door, and the bottom step has been damaged. The corner of the step is missing. I would like to repair it so that it is safe and attractive. How do I go about this?

A: Fixing the step is surprisingly easy. You probably have some of the necessary tools, so you will only need to buy, rent or borrow a few specialty tools.

You will first need to chip away any loose concrete to get to solid concrete so that the patch will hold. You can use a hand sledge or a 3-pound maul, and a brick chisel. Scrape the area with a wire brush and blow away any dust or residue.

Next, construct a form around the chipped step to hold the patch in place. Use 1-inch thick boards around the step. The width of the board depends upon the height of the step, but 1 inch by 8 inches is a good general dimension.

Attach the boards at a 90-degree angle using duplex nails (double-headed nails). Keep the boards from moving by driving 1-inch-by-3-inch wooden stakes into the ground, and nail the form boards to the stakes. Apply a thin film of clean motor oil to the inside of the form boards so the patch doesn’t stick to the boards.

Now that the form is in place, you will need to apply a “scrub coat.” This is a mixture of liquid bonding agent and sifted premixed sand mix. Dampen the area with a spray bottle and apply the scrub coat. Make sure that the scrub coat is still wet when you actually start filling the patch with the wet sand mix.

Concrete is always thirsty. If you start filling the patch with wet sand mix and you don’t first dampen the surrounding concrete, the surrounding concrete will absorb the water from your patch, causing it to fail.

This repair is fairly small, so you will only need a bag or two of sand mix such as Quikrete or Sakrete (each bag costs a few dollars). This stuff is easier to mix than a cake mix; all you need is just a little water. Pour the sand mix in a bucket and add water to make a workable consistency. When you can squeeze a handful and it doesn’t crumble or drip, you have the right consistency.

Fill the damaged step a little at a time with a pointing trowel (less than $10), and pack down the mixture to squeeze out any air bubbles. Continue filling the area until it is slightly higher than the surrounding surface.

Use a wood float (or a 1-inch-by-4-inch board - it’s cheaper) and tilt it on its edge. Move the wood back and forth to pack down the wet sand mix, and let the whole thing sit for a few minutes. Place an edging tool (less than $10) between the form board and patch. Using short strokes, shape the edges of the step. The edging tool forms the small curve on the step.

Let the patch sit about 45 minutes. If there is water still pooled on the surface, it’s too wet. Periodically, press down on the patch with your thumb. If you leave only a light thumbprint, grab a magnesium float (less than $20) and smooth it out.

To texture the patch to match the surrounding concrete, use a stiff-bristled broom and brush the surface.

Wait 30 minutes more, and then remove the form boards. Use the edging tool to shape the vertical corner. You will want to keep the patch wet so that it cures properly. Spray the patch with a garden hose or spray bottle two or three times a day for three days. After that, moisten it twice a day for a week.

Mike Klimek is a licensed contractor and president of Pro Handyman Corp. Questions may be sent by email to: questions@pro-handyman.com. Or, mail to: P.O. Box 96761, Las Vegas, NV 89193. His Web address is: www.pro-handyman.com.

ad-high_impact_4
Life
Kids become firefighters at Fire Station 98 open house
Henderson residents wore fire hats, learned about CPR and met firefighters at the Fire Station 98 open house Saturday, August 11, 2018. (Marcus Villagran Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
People from all over the world attend RollerCon 2018
RollerCon 2018 is a five-day convention focused on the roller derby community and culture at Westgate in Las Vegas. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Camp Broadway teaches kids how to sing and dance
The Smith Center's seventh annual Camp Broadway musical theater program gives 150 kids ages 6-17 an opportunity to learn musical theater skills from industry professionals over a five-day period. Marcus Villagran/ Las Vegas Review-Journal @brokejournalist
Las Vegas police officer on being PETA's Sexiest Vegan Next Door
Las Vegas police officer David Anthony talks vegan lifestyle and how he feels about being voted PETA's sexiest Vegan next door from his home on Monday, July 9, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
'NO H8' Campaign comes to Las Vegas
Hundreds of locals participate in the NO H8 campaign founded by Adam Bouska and Jeff Parshley as a response to Proposition 8, a California ban on same-sex marriage. The campaign has since evolved to represent equal treatment for all. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Over 40,000 People Attend The 4th Of July Parade In Summerlin In Las Vegas
Over 40,000 People Attend The 4th Of July Parade In Summerlin In Las Vegas. (Janna Karel Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Star Wars and Golden Knights mashup at downtown art shop
Star Wars and Vegas Golden Knights fans attend the Boba Fett Golden Knight Paint Class at The Bubblegum Gallery in Las Vegas, Friday, June 29, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Bark-Andre Furry meets Capitals superfan Ovie the Bulldog
Two of NHL's furriest fans met at the Forum Shops in Caesars Palace on Tuesday, June 18, 2018, in Las Vegas. Vegas Golden Knights superfan Bark-Andre Furry and Washington Capitals superfan Ovie the Bulldog shared a plate of meatballs and spaghetti with help from Logan, "The Girl with the Hat." (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
TOP NEWS
News Headlines
ad-infeed_1
ads_infeed_2
Local Spotlight
Home and Garden Video
Add Event
Home Front Page Footer Listing
Circular
You May Like

You May Like