outdoor steps


Hi. I ripped out my backyard deck and have decided to install pavers. I will not be removing the concrete, though I know that is the ideal way to do it. Anyway, I am building a staircase out of concrete blocks which I intend to fill, scratch coat, and finally install pavers over. The problem I have is that the concrete is off level where I will be building the stairs. It's off about an inch over a 4 foot run.
QUESTION: Can I make a form and pour something like Quikrete Self Leveling Floor Resurfacer, let cure, then build on top of this? Will it be too much weight if I only pour 1-2 inches underneath? Any other ideas or suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Again, I know the right way is to start from scratch, but limitations with time, energy, and money say otherwise. Thanks.
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Set the blocks in mortar, let it set up, then fill the block.
R
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Shave the concrete blocks. Use safety glasses, and a dust mask, (I put a fan up to blow the dust) cut the blocks. Cinder blocks tool very easily. You can grind them, shave them, score and break them.......etc. Somehow you still need to attach the blocks to the concrete. You can put some re-bar pins in the existing concrete also with good epoxy. Simpson makes a quick setting epoxy for this. I would "set a bed of mortar" and lay the cut blocks on that mortar bed for the stairs that would help level them. After this sets, fill the blocks up with concrete. Make sure to have some re-bar pins sticking up! this will give additional anchoring. You can do some bends in the re-bar and tie it in to the other e-bars......too! jloomisconstruction.com

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Why bother with cutting/shaving(?) the block? If it's only out an inch the setting bed mortar can deal with it, and since the block will be filled, there's probably no need to pin the steps to the slab - gravity will do a fine job of holding the steps in place.
The question that hasn't been asked or addressed is what exactly is the concrete that the steps will be sitting on, and will that move with all of the additional weight that will be added.
R
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I was not certain if the blocks purchased were too high. Without actually knowing the riser height, and the existing concrete height I was a bit confused. I would set the blocks right in a mortar bed if the height of these was proper.... 7" riser or less but no more than 7 1/2" I think we are on the same page. Putting a rebar epoxy dowel or more in the existing concrete would maybe help. john
wrote:

Why bother with cutting/shaving(?) the block? If it's only out an inch the setting bed mortar can deal with it, and since the block will be filled, there's probably no need to pin the steps to the slab - gravity will do a fine job of holding the steps in place.
The question that hasn't been asked or addressed is what exactly is the concrete that the steps will be sitting on, and will that move with all of the additional weight that will be added.
R
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Thank you guys. I spent a good deal of time thinking about this and you have both made it seem simple. Much appreciated.
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No problemo, muchacho. What exactly is the concrete that the steps will be resting on? And are you sure that the concrete hasn't moved? Reason I'm asking is if the existing slab or whatever it is moved with just it's own weight, it will most likely move more with the added block/fill/paver weight. Obviously you don't want to be building good on top of bad, and masonry work is always made or broken on the preparations and precautions. The actual setting or pouring is the easy part.
R
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The concrete was there when I bought the house 5 years ago. The only thing I know about it is that it covers the first half of the yard and is about 6 inches deep - I know that from having to core through it in a few spots to place termite traps. It is all graded away from the house and I'm a wood floor guy trying to do something I have no clue about :)
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