Q&A / 

Are you going to be pouring a concrete sidewalk, driveway, patio or apron slab soon? Do you know you get ONE CHANCE to get it right? Is your contractor going to botch the job and your new concrete spall or develop ugly random cracks? How do you know it's going to be done right? Are […]

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3D Printed House Cost - It's Not All Unicorns and Rainbows You may wonder if the new belle of the ball, 3D printed house, is really going to cost you less money to build than a normal house. Some publications fawn about new techniques like these and only share the glitter and gleam of the […]

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Repair Stucco Wall - Why It Failed My wife and I are the head ushers at our church. Each Sunday when we arrive early, we walk up a ramp that allows those attending mass in a wheelchair an easy way into Sacred Heart Church in Laconia, NH. The ramp was built with two poured concrete […]

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How Long Can Concrete Last - Over a Hundred Years! You may be holed up in your home as I am. Lately, I’ve been spending some time looking at the thousands of photographs I’ve shot over the past few years. When I travel and see something interesting about construction, building, or historic value, I always […]

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Reinforcing Steel in Footings - It's 100X Stronger Than Concrete QUESTION: Tim, I’m flummoxed. I’m about to build a large detached garage. The plans call for a 10-inch-thick by 20-inch-wide poured concrete footing with two 1/2-inch steel bars that run continuously in the concrete. One bidding contractor says this steel is a waste of time […]

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  "If you decide to apply one of the many magnificent epoxy coatings, you introduce a wildcard into the equation. There's a good chance the epoxy will fail and chip." DEAR TIM: I’ve got problems with some of the concrete on the outside of my home as well as in my garage. There are lots […]

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This column was shared with my 31,000 subscribers who read my March 27, 2020 AsktheBuilder Newsletter. QUESTION #1: Tim, it’s time for you to reach into your magic tool bag. I need to replace a cracked-off section of my concrete driveway. My primary concern is I want the color and texture of the new patch […]

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DEAR TIM: I’m about to build a new home with both an attached garage and a separate free-standing three-bay garage. The house I grew up in had floor drains in the garage and they were wonderful. My builder has never heard of garage floor drains and insists on sloping the concrete floor so all liquids […]

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DEAR TIM: I’m about to have a new concrete driveway installed as well as some sidewalks. I asked the bidding contractors how long I might expect the concrete to last. The range given was from twenty to thirty years. That seems like a long time but I thought it could last much longer. How long […]

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Outdoor Sink Restoration QUESTION #1: I’m in the process of restoring a grand natural stone outdoor sink. It’s made from some type of natural stone. Locals tell me it’s soapstone. Once restored, it’s going to be used as a beverage serving station for outdoor parties. Someone painted it years ago and after stripping the paint, […]

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