The arrangement of concrete paths is carried out in several stages:
1. Digging a trench
2. Hammering wooden pegs
3. Fixing the formwork
4. Adding a layer of rubble
5. Making a deformation seam
6. Putting concrete into formwork
7. Ramming concrete
8. Continuing the concreting
- To properly prepare the ground and design the formwork, mark the walkway and determine the bends and width before the start of work.
- Remove the top layer of soil to a depth of 20 cm.
- Make a layer of well-compacted gravel or crushed stone (about 10 cm thick).
- Install and secure the formwork using timber.
- Make the walkway slightly inclined for water drainage.
Preparing the concrete mix:
- For concrete walkways, use cement of strength class 500. CEMARK SHVYDKYI is the best choice for this type of work.
- Use our online calculator to calculate the building materials requirements for a concrete walkway/driveway
- Mix the amount of concrete mix that can be poured and compacted in 1-2 hours, as the workability of the concrete mix decreases over time.
- To increase the workability of concrete mixes, use plasticisers and follow the dosage rules specified by the manufacturer on the bag.
After pouring the concrete:
- Divide the area of the concrete slabs, driveways and garden paths by expansion joints 15-20 mm wide into separate sections no larger than 3 x 4 m. Such joints could be made by inserting boards into the thickness of fresh concrete. It is possible to use thick plywood or polyfoam instead of boards.
Approximately one month after laying the concrete, the joints must be sealed with special water stops, gaskets, and sealants or filled with less dense material than concrete (sand, screenings) and covered with a layer of mortar.
- It is better to make temperature joints equal to a third of concrete thickness (25-30 mm). The distance between the joints should not be more than 1.5-2 m. To form this type of joint in fresh concrete, use timber, metal strips, T-shaped metal profiles or weatherboards.
Leave them for a while, and then take them out. By tapping on the top of the profile, form slits 25–30 mm deep and 5–10 mm wide. They can also be cut with an angle grinder, but not later than the third day after setting.
- While concrete is being mixed and poured, the mix entrains air, so be sure to compact the freshly poured concrete. Usually, two people gradually move along and “beat” the concrete with chopping movements in the vertical plane. It is best to use vibrators (immersion or plate), but you can compact it with a heavy board or beam about 50 mm thick if this is impossible.
- When excess moisture comes out of the concrete surface, smooth it with a screed board, a brush or a particular wooden, polystyrene or metal float.
- You can finish the concrete surface with a little cement 5-10 hours after pouring for additional waterproofing and a better appearance. It can be done with a trowel to form the smoothest surface. Such actions significantly increase the durability of the surface.
- Concrete must be protected from moisture loss, especially during the first week after laying. The time between finishing (or laying, if no finishing is done) and the beginning of care should be minimised to prevent drying of the concrete surface.
- You can start walking on the concrete only in two or three days. And driving on it is possible not earlier than 14 days after laying.