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DIY: How To Break Concrete

Save energy and time when concrete breaking. Plan correctly with the advice below. Here is how to break concrete:

Gather Your Tools

Here is what you'll need for the DIY project. Get this list together before you start to save time and prevent frustration:

  • Ear plugs
  • Heavy duty wheelbarrow
  • Pry bar (5 feet to 6 feet long)
  • Safety eyewear
  • Sledgehammer (12 pounds)
  • Leather gloves
  • Mattock
  • Bolt cutters

Setting Up Your Disposal System

You won't be able to throw your broken concrete in the normal trash. You can rent a special "waste disposal" container. Contact your local waste disposal professionals and provide them with the dimensions of your patio or concrete structure. Let them recommend the proper type and size of container for you. Ideally, you can rent a walk-in container so that you don't need to lift the concrete up high to dispose of it.

Get a Crew Together

This kind of project can be made a lot easier with the help of some extra bodies, especially due to the heavy lifting. Call in favors from friends and seek to gain commitments. Or you can hire some people to help you. Either way, you'll be glad you have extra help: someone can continue to break up the concrete while the other hauls it away.

Pry and Break

It can be tempting to start whacking away with the sledge hammer when you've got everything set up. Avoid doing this. You will end up shattering the top layer of the concrete but you won't penetrate the slab deeply. That's because of the sand base underneath most concrete that absorbs the energy from your blows. This will leave you exhausted without much progress.

Instead, start swinging at the corners then work your way inward. If don't crack the concrete on your first swing, then aim for another spot. If you strike the same spot twice, it could create pulverized rubble that merely acts as insulation and makes it harder to achieve deep cracks.

Separate Chunks

Separate chunks from each other by prying them apart using the mattock. Swing the mattock into the crack between chunks, then pry upward to release them. If you mattock doesn't give you enough leverage to separate them completely, then only use the mattock initially to create a small gap and complete the separation with your pry bar.

The Final Cleanup

Throughout the process, you should be hauling broken chunks continuously in your wheelbarrow to your waste container. Now that you're at the end, haul the few final pieces and perform general cleanup on the work area. Make sure your tools are collected and debris isn't left lying around (such as in the neighbor's yard).

Concrete breaking is tough work. But you can make it easier if you have the right tools, methods, and preparation. Follow the advice above and save your time and energy on this DIY project. Contact a business, such as Garrett Concrete Cutting, Coring & Sawing Inc - Chino, for more information. 

About Me

concrete damage and repairs

What do you do when your concrete driveway starts cracking? Do you know what can cause the concrete to crack? Can you make the repairs without finding the cause of the crack? This blog is all about concrete damage and what you can do to repair it. You can find tips for avoiding further damage and what you can do to take care of the damage that is already visible. I created this blog after paying a great contractor to make the repairs to my driveway. He walked me through the process and helped me learn a lot about concrete damage and repairs. Here, you will find what he taught me.

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