Finding cracks in your garage floor or crumbling concrete could be signs of structural damage. Depending on the size of those cracks and the contributing factors, you could require replacement. You should never ignore any potential warning signs that could highlight a bigger problem like structural damage in your garage foundation. Small shrinkage cracks can quickly turn into larger cracks and become far more serious. Avoiding simple repairs now can lead to more severe and expensive damage in the future. In this article, we’ll outline what you should do when you have a damaged floor.
What Causes Garage Floor Damage?
The floor in your garage experiences wear and tear every day. Your vehicle alone adds over 3,000 lbs. of weight that sits on top of the floor. Add the regular foot traffic, freeze and thaw cycles, plus all the chemicals and salt that get spilt on the floor, and over time you end up with a garage floor that deteriorates fast.
What Does the Damage Look Like?
The first signs of damage are often small hairline cracks. These small cracks are usually caused by temperature fluctuations, shrinking of the concrete, expansion/contraction and the added weight of your vehicle. At this stage, there should be no real cause for concern. You only really need to be concerned once larger, longer cracks start to form, crumbling concrete becomes evident, or part of the floor sub-base starts to sink down. When this happens, it’s time to call in a professional.
What Does a Foundation Professional Do?
The first thing the foundation expert will do is look at the damage to identify the leading cause of it. If the floor is deteriorating because of normal wear and tear there may not be an underlying cause. In the event that the damage is due to poor installation practices or major settling is occurring causing large cracks, the foundation expert will determine whether repairs will suffice to fix the issue at this stage. In the event that simple repairs will not be enough to prevent further cracks from forming in the future, a full replacement may be necessary.
What’s the Difference Between Repairs and Replacement?
Depending on the severity of the issue, repairs can include patching cracks or sections of the floor with epoxy to close off any of the gaps. On the other hand, replacing a severely cracked and damaged floor can often require adding an entirely new garage floor. To replace it, the original concrete floor is removed, the sub-grade prepared and a new floor installed.
How to Decide Whether You Need a Repair or Replacement
Unless you are a trained foundation expert, it’s best to leave that decision to the pros. A replacement will obviously be a more expensive undertaking, however, it’s often the more affordable option when compared to conducting numerous short-term repairs. A foundation expert will be able to determine the problem at hand and provide you with the best solution to fix the issue, taking your budget and needs into consideration.
Why Call The Foundation Experts?
We are Ottawa’s leading foundation repair and replacement team. Since 1995, we have been providing our community with cost-effective solutions and quality work. Whether you have a deteriorating garage floor or other structural issues that are impacting the aesthetics and safety of your home, our team will provide you with the best advice and solution to your problem.
Our services and expertise are in the following areas:
- Foundation repairs and replacement
- Structural repairs and replacement
- Concrete and stone repairs
- Basement lowering
- Basement waterproofing
- Commercial foundation repair
- Window well excavation and installment
- Weeping tile and sump pump installation
- Basement restoration
- Geotechnical and environmental engineering
- Indoor air quality
- Stone, stucco, brick and block repair
- Retaining walls
- Asphalt installation and repair
- And more!
Don’t let your garage floor cracks turn into costly damage. Contact us today if you’re in need of garage floor repair or replacement in Ottawa, or any of the other services mentioned above. Our professional team will be happy to come to your home to provide a professional assessment of the damage.