As with any home improvement project you want your concrete project to turn out right the first time. To help accomplish this you need to do a little planning and some research. Below you will find some reminders regarding planning concrete projects along with photos of a recent concrete install. For this client Hughes Construction replaced their sidewalk and driveway as well as updating the adjacent drainage.
Scope of Project
The first thing you need to do is determine the specifics of your project. What is it you are looking to accomplish? What is the intended purpose of this project? Do you already know the dimensions of the concrete needed? Are you looking to do more than just replace existing concrete? What type of finish are you looking for? Is the project a commercial project or residential?
Try to have as much information as you can readily available when calling around to contractors. If you are not sure how much concrete you want to replace, try to have a budget in mind if possible. When hiring a contractor it is important to understand the scope of your project. Depending on that scope there are multiple factors that may impact the price. These include but are not limited to the dimensions of the project, thickness of concrete, class of concrete, as well as how much rebar is used if any. In addition to these factors, feasibility of the project and access to the project site will impact price as well.
Timing of Project
Next you need to determine when are you looking to accomplish the work by? Do you need it done sooner rather than later? Do you have a timeline to meet? Or is your schedule flexible?
Again try to have an idea as to your timing when calling around. Keep in mind many contractors book several weeks to several months out. It is always good to ask contractors up front how far out they are booking. Doing this will help to determine if your schedules are in line with each other. At the same time it is important to understand that concrete work is weather dependent. For this reason most contractors are likely not able to give you a set date as to when your project will be completed, especially when scheduling several months out.
To help you get the most out of your newly poured concrete you need to remember it can take up to a year for the concrete to fully cure. So it is best not to apply chemicals to the surface during that time. For the first year you will want to use mechanical means for snow and ice removal. Otherwise your new investment will break down much quicker than expected.
For additional information about planning a concrete project see our previous post “Upcoming Concrete Projects?“