What Causes Sunken Concrete?

Concrete is a fantastic building material. It's durable, economical, and can hold a great deal of weight. That said, it's no secret that after years of wear and tear, concrete can crack, crumble, and sink. Ever wonder why this happens? Here are some of the most common causes of sunken concrete.

1. Poor Construction

A perfect concrete slab should be smooth, strong, and poured on a well-prepared site. Anything less than perfect means you'll end up with a driveway that is crumbling long before its time.

Here are a couple of the most common mistakes made during initial construction:

  1. Incorrect water-to-cement ratio — in other words: the cement was too watery)

  2. Inadequate curing — concrete cured at inconsistent temperatures or dried too quickly

2. Water Intrusion

It's relatively common for water from a water spout or flooded area to intrude underneath concrete slabs, eroding foundational soil over time. This causes even more problems in regions where cold weather causes water to expand during a freeze, then melt away abruptly, leaving voids behind — *ahem* Wyoming.

In a poorly-graded yard — where water doesn't naturally flow away to a storm drain, but pools near the house — water can instead flow underneath concrete, causing it to sink bit by bit till it fails.

3. A Weak Base

Concrete is only as strong as the foundation it's built upon. As such, concrete set on top of a weak, poorly-compacted base with unstable footings will fail, crack and sink over time.

A common place you might see sunken concrete is around the outside edge of your foundation or other areas in which the base is more likely to shift and become uneven. Need a quick fix? Start by packing open gaps with soil and gravel, then call Ward.

The Solution to Sinking Concrete: Concrete Lifting

Have concrete that's already failing? Our experienced concrete lifting professionals use a process called polyjacking to raise sunken concrete to its original state.

The process — half the cost of replacement — is also much more efficient than traditional solutions, ensuring you can get back to using your slab within minutes! Here are three other reasons you should choose concrete lifting over replacement.

Is your concrete already too far gone? You know who to call!

Ward Insulation & Concrete Lifting

WY: (307) 632-7777

CO: (970) 632-1560


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