Q&A / 

Sandra Schumacher lives up in the land of billions of barrels of oil better known as Bismarck, North Dakota. She's got a problem with here patio because it slopes towards her house. Allow her to explain. "We have a 10 x 12 concrete patio that has sloped toward the house causing leakage during rainstorms. Could we […]

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DEAR TIM: My new home is under construction. I'm in a disagreement with my builder about what's going to happen under my garage slab. Right now there's a trench around the inside on all four walls where they had to dig to install the foundation. The center of the garage area is undisturbed dirt and […]

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Bernadette Snoussi lives in London, England. She's got a problem with an older decorative garden wall that's in need of repair. Here's her description, but I think the wonderful photo she sent does a superb job of telling the tale: "Hi. Could you please tell me whether it's possible to apply new concrete plinths over the […]

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Ken Morris has lots of water puddles on his stamped concrete patio in Phoenix, AZ. He thought of an idea on how to solve it, but I believe I have a much better solution. Here's what he sent to me: "My patio was poorly designed.  You can see from the picture I get standing water and […]

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Concrete is simply artificial rock. If it's mixed, placed, finished and cured correctly it can last 100 or more years. If your concrete steps, walkways, patios, etc. are crumbling, you may be able to repair them with traditional products and methods or you can choose from some modern materials. Often concrete deterioration is just a […]

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Ron wants to pour a concrete patio and wonders about proper support so it won't crack. He's doing this work in cold Fonthill, Ontario Canada. Here's what he told me: "We had our basement (block) waterproofed from the outside one year ago and have sandy soil. The area we are looking to do is 10 x […]

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DEAR TIM: I'm renovating a basement bath during the winter while I'm slow at work. When I removed the old shower insert, I discovered a large area of crumbling and missing concrete. There's standing water in the ground because of the high ground water table this time of year. I've discovered conflicting information online as […]

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DEAR TIM: What type of stone would be best for filling this cavity that is a planned two-car garage addition? It is approximately 7 feet deep. The local concrete supplier sells recycled concrete for a really good price. It is very similar to crusher run. Due to the design, compacting will be next to impossible. […]

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Curtis Gomes runs a building and remodeling business in Providence, RI just south of where I live. Read what he sent  me: "At what temperature is it too cold to pour concrete in sonotubes? 30 degrees F?" Here's my answer: Curtis, believe it or not, you can pour concrete successfully at much colder temperatures, even […]

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Ronald A. Carleton has trouble with paint peeling on his patio in Port Clinton,Ohio. Perhaps paint is not practical. How's that for alliteration? Here's what Ron wrote to me: "What's the best product to apply to pre-painted cement on a outdoor patio? The pre-painted area in the sun area flakes off while the shaded area stays […]

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