Chasing Church Concrete Cracks: Maintenance Advice
Concrete is an excellent choice for both parking lots and sidewalks, providing stellar performance throughout its service life when it is mixed and cured properly. Unfortunately once the mix dries, the aging process begins. Proper ongoing maintenance can keep your concrete damage free and add to the value of your investment.
For starters, it is a good idea to high-pressure wash the surface at least once a year and inspect it for defects. Your parking lots and high traffic walkways should also be sealed every year. These surfaces are used continuously year-round and are usually hounded by plows, shovels, or snow blowers.
Sealing the surface is a simple and inexpensive process that will reduce wear on your concrete. Unsealed concrete is porous and will absorb water and any other liquids. With the high amount of traffic that your church receives and a short amount of time, these liquids will quickly wear down your concrete. As the top surface wears, the stones inside of the concrete are exposed. Once the surface is sealed, it must remain sealed.
Sand is the only material that should be used to melt snow and ice on the surface. Rock salt and deicers should never be used; they will accelerate the wear on the sealer and can potentially damage the concrete. Deicers inherently increase the number of freeze thaw cycles for the cement surface.
Do not use harsh acids for stain removal. Products specifically designed for the specific stain and for use on concrete are advised.
Ultraviolet light also affects the pigments within the concrete. Colors will fade if the surface is unsealed and is exposed to the sun. Maintaining a sealed surface will easily preserve your color.
If water enters cracks and holes, it may freeze and undermine the substrate. If this happens, the most effective concrete repair option is to remove and replace the deteriorated area.
Your concrete is subject to yearly freeze/thaw cycles. Expansion joints can be cut to allow for the expansion and contraction of the concrete slab. Cracks may appear over time if pressure on the concrete slab is not diverted into the expansion cuts. Even despite proper installation, cracks may still appear. In this case, it is advised to fill the crack and hide it by using color. That area should then be monitored yearly. Cracks are never fully repaired, they can only be filled. Even then a crack can resurface over time.
Proper yearly maintenance, sealing, and snow management will ensure that your church’s concrete surfaces remain beautiful for decades.
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We chose Religious Real Estate to market our property in Battle Creek after the buyer defaulted on the land contract. We are very pleased with Religious Real Estate’s efforts and would recommend them in the future.
In my role as Executive Director of the United Methodist Union of Greater Detroit, I have had the pleasure to work with Mr. Bill Skubik for the past fifteen years. I believe Bill has looked out for our best interests in every situation and I believe you will be in good hands if you choose to work with Bill Skubik.
The leadership of our church felt that we were treated fairly and honestly. We would recommend Religious Real Estate for any real estate needs your church may have in the future.
Religious Real Estate was there for us throughout the entire process. The sale began in June 2004 with a closing in November 2004. We recommend Religious Real Estate for your real estate needs.
Religious Real Estate created a detailed marketing package for our property and implemented a thorough marketing program, contact the churches, charter schools and other charitable organizations. Religious Real Estate has done a competent job and we would recommend their services.
We enjoyed our time with Religious Real Estate and we have used them with two other properties since our land purchase.
In March of 2004, our church was able to move from renting to owning. Bill Skubik of Religious Real Estate was extremely helpful in the process.
The marketing package for the property was highly professional, presenting all the positive points about the property. Without hesitation, I would recommend Religious Real Estate to any religious organization with a real estate need.