Pouring a concrete driveway is an expensive project. Because of this, you’ll want to take care of it in order to get the most out of this investment. All types of driveways require some sort of maintenance in order to preserve their life. Below are a few tips that will help you get the most out of your concrete driveway.
1. Steer clear of chemicals meant for de-icing
Here in Louisiana, we tend to panic at the first sign of a snowflake. While it may seem logical to douse your driveway with de-icing chemicals, this is actually very harmful to your concrete. These chemicals can result in surface damage such as spalling and scaling, because they force the moisture inside of your concrete to thaw and refreeze, which can create cracks in the surface.
De-icing products that are made with ammonium sulphates and ammonium nitrates are particularly detrimental because these ingredients will chemically attack your concrete. For the first winter of your new concrete, it’s best to avoid any de-icing products altogether–even rock salt.
2. Clean stains as soon as they occur
You should always remove gas, oil, and grease spills from your concrete as soon as they occur–even if you have a concrete sealer over top. If you’re unable to tend to it in time and it does end up discoloring your driveway, most stains can be removed with certain cleaning chemicals and a pressure washer.
3. Be careful with it
While concrete is one of the strongest driveway materials, it isn’t made to support vehicles over a certain weight and can be damaged with metal, so be careful when shoveling or plowing the surface.
4. Clean it and add more sealer if necessary
You can keep your concrete looking new by cleaning it regularly and adding a sealer. The frequency of cleanings necessary will depend on the weather and the amount of traffic that occurs on top of the concrete. Concrete sealer isn’t permanent, and typically needs to be reapplied when the finish starts to appear worn (this usually occurs around the two year mark).
While concrete is one of the most durable materials you could possibly use for your driveway, it still requires maintenance and care. Following the above tips will help you extend the life of your concrete and get the most out of your investment. Contact Port Aggregates today with any further questions about your concrete!