I'm in a cold climate - eastern Canada.
The apron (for lack of a better term) of my 30 year-old concrete
garage floor is starting to chip rather badly. You can see the nature
of the chipping here:
Any ideas on how best to not only stop the decay, but how it might be
returned to its original condition?
Do you let a salt laden car thaw there in the winter? That would
explain cause, as to how to stop it, if that is the case cover it,
stop doing that or at least wash the car off before garaging it (I've
lived in cold places and know how impractical that is.) Even hosing
the garage out is a bit impractical as the driveway would then become
sheet ice. As to how to fix it, pouring a new one over it would work,
unless you are unwilling to give up height inside.
Classic salt spalling. Water and salt get in the pores, freeze, and a
chip gets blown out. If rest of garage slab is in good shape, you could
get a price on having front edge of slab cut off, and about 18" of the
asphalt driveway, and have a proper new sloped apron poured there. They
do sell patch material, but on a sloped high-impact spot like that, it
is not likely to last very well.
If it is any consolation, here in SW Michigan, I have stripes of pits
like that, inside the garage, under the tire tracks and body drip lines.
Stopping is to keep the salt and slush from getting on it. Returning it to
original condition is a bit more difficult. It requires a jack hammer, dump
truck, cement mixer, trowels, etc. For the apron of a garage, you may be
able to protect it with a sealer.
Thanks for the replies. Yes, we park the car in there. It certainly
isn't a practice that we would want to stop. And I agree - washing the
car off each and every time isn't practical. However, I had been
neglecting any real protection for the slab over the past five years
So would that be the idea? Bring in an expert to cut it back and pour
in new? I wasn't sure how well new concrete would adhere to the old
stuff once it was cut back.
I assume that proper care after would help to extend its life properly?
yeah and they should pin the old concrete to the new provided its
at this point do clean remove all loose material and do the top and
bond coating. let cure for at least a month before coating with
something like thompsons water seal so water and salt cant penetrate
and cause future damage.
in the future you can always replace the floor if needed before say
No need for it to adhere- you would be adding a new joint at the cut
line, with a suitable material in the crack, and 2-3 grooves headed
downhill from the new joint to keep it drained. If your part of Canada
follows similar practice to the states, most concrete flatwork companies
give free rough estimates. Invite a couple over, show them the problem,
and see what they say. You just want to make sure the new slab won't
screw up the drainage of the main garage slab. Around here, there is
usually a half-inch or so drop at the edge of the garage slab, and if
garage slab slopes properly, most of the salty water flows right out the
door. Your problem is nothing an experienced concrete guy has not seen
And yes, there are sealers you can slop on to fresh concrete once it
cures a month, and reapply every year or two. So if you don't get it
fixed quick, wait till spring. You want any new concrete to be good and
hard before salt season starts.
There are companies that do concrete resurfacing, specializing in garage and
driveways. Get an estimate from a few of them and get references to work
that they have done in the past.
The new salt replacements being used in eastern Canada are even worse than
salt as far as causing damage. The best protection that I have heard of on a
good surface is to have a high quality sealer applied to the concrete after
proper preparation of the concrete. This is not a one time application and
requires maintenance (re-application every year or two) to maintain its
Another Eastern Canada guy.
Moving on a tangent, why do you garage the car? I live the other side of The
Pond where the winter temperature rarely gets to -17C but is frequently sub
zero. Putting an auto after use in a garage encourages those little russet
creatures to invade the vehicle.
I deliberately leave our regularly used autos on the drive to avoid that
little mite that lives in the garage.
We do have a '57 motor sat in there that I've not used for a while, motor
bikes and KIDS' junk! The garage would fit both my wife's and my motor which
I chose not to do. The concrete in the near 30 year old garage is fine.
My younger kid's motor (Peugeot 306) that has been in the family for over 8
years and is over 12 years old has now done just short of 100 kmiles has no
surface rust but some in the seams of the bonnet over the engine; my motor,
a Ford Focus that is almost 8 years old, has evidence that the russet bug
has attacked the bonnet surface as a result of paint chips (only) and has
over 150 kmiles on the clock; my wife's 206cc that is just 2.5 years old has
no evidence of the russet bug.
Before you ask!, my elder son has no desire to own an auto though he has a
Because I detest digging the car out of snow cover, and even when it
isn't snowing, scraping the frost off the windows?
My attached garage is not heated, other than what leaks out from the
imperfect house walls, and the hot engine block and other moving parts
that the car brings in from the cold. It freezes in there, but seldom
freezes hard. You are correct that thermal cycling promotes rust, but I
put that under the chapter heading of an acceptable tradeoff.
Now if I could just find a cost-effective way to make the driveway
shovel itself when it snows.
Well for starters , stop putting salt on it...I don't get the need for a
completely clear and dry driveway in the winter..A paved drive will melt off
by itself in a few days unless it is below zero....In my gravel drive I
always pack down the first snow of the season by driving over it with the
plow truck and only plow after I have a good base...NO SALT and I only sand
if it gets icy like after freezing rain or sleet , ect....ALOT less damage
to the drive and lawn....I put studded snows on SWMBO's car anyway for my
peace of mind while she is commuting and I drive a 4X4...If you live in snow
country you should run snowtires and lay off the salt....IMHO...
I don't put salt on my driveway. I do, however, drive on the public
roads, and they put plenty (sometimes way too much) salt on those.
Entire lower side of car and suspension ends up covered with an
ice-snow-salt slurry, and when it isn't cold enough to keep all that
crud frozen, it drips on the garage floor.
If I had a barn, I'd keep an old beater 4x4 in it for the 3-4 weeks a
year the roads are really bad, but since that is not an option, I make
do with a snow blower for my steeply sloped asphalt driveway, and paying
attention to what I am doing when out driving. Driving on the snowpack
is not an option with a sloped driveway and an automatic transmission.
DAMHIKT. And yes, if I can expose even a third of the asphalt surface,
half a day of sunlight will burn the drive clear if it isn't below 10
degrees or so.
I was refering to the garage apron in the OP pic with the stop putting salt
on it comment...That damage was caused by salting it alot.....My garage
floor hasn't got any pits YET from salt dripping off the cars but it is only
3 years old...Sloped drives are a PITA but studded snowtires help ALOT...I
put studded snows on my wifes '06 Elantra with auto tranny and toss a couple
of tubes of sand in the trunk and she goes everywhere I would with my 4X4
truck here in the hills of Maine....I don't know how many times I thought I
was gonna have to pull her out into the road and warmed the truck up , got
the chain out , only to have her buzz out of the garage and out to the road
on her way to work 40 miles away and back home again in a snowstorm...LOL...
Studded snow tires are not legal in a lot of places due to the damage they
cause to roads.
If your driveway is oriented in such a fashion that the sun gets a chance to
melt the snow off your driveway, you are lucky. Not everyone is in that
situation. I have had to use an axe to get ice off of the driveway because
the sun was just warm enough to melt the little snow that was left after
show shoveling getting as much snow off as possible getting right down to
the surface. There is however always a very fine layer that you cannot get
off. That layer gets heated by the sun but not long enough to run off then
it freezes hard with mid afternoon temperatures in the -20C or colder so
salt will not work. After a few weeks of this, ice is starting to thicken on
the drive and start backing up the slant. Sooner or later it is several
inches thick. If not removed by smashing the ice and getting it off the
driveway, a freak rain storm could cause some real damage.
My neighbour across the street having a southern exposure, had very little
problem with ice and snow. The amount of sunlight that your driveway gets in
the winter makes a very big difference in the problems that winter poses.
Here in Maine Studs are legal to run from Oct. 1 thru May 1....I have never
heard of a state in the snow belt outlawing studded snow tires all together
, EXCEPT during the summer months.....Please enlighten us with an example or
link....Thanks....Exactly what damage is done to the road by studds ??? Here
they are illegal in the summer because the tires get hot and the studs will
fly out at highway speeds and could be dangerous , not for the damage to the
Here in Ontario, studs have been banned almost from the year that they first
came out. I don't know of any province that allows them but there could be
What damage is done by the studs? You're kidding....right!
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