CONCRETE QUESTION

OK, it may be a sily question, but here goes. My home is 4 years old and I'm the 2nd owner. The concrete walkway and driveway have the original wooden splints separating the slabs. Can I take them out? Some of them are very warped and are now a safety concern. Are the "splints" only for the drying process or do they serve a purpose after the cement is completely dry? Thanks in advance.
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BrianInNY wrote:

Where are you located?
Asked the local building inspector department - if one exists?
Lou
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Read this:
http://www.johnbridge.com/control_joints.htm
In particular:
Contraction Joints Large flat areas, or long lengths of concrete placed monolithically, require contraction joints. These are essentially weakened planes constructed in a concrete member to provide a reduction in member thickness for the purpose of controlling shrinkage stresses to that specific area. These are commonly referred to as "dummy joints", which are place at predetermined points of possible stress concentration. And:
Installation of a dummy joint is effected after the concrete has been edged, and prior to float-finishing of the surface. ***Forming strips of wood (pre-soaked or pre-sealed) or metal may be embedded in the plastic concrete and carefully removed after the concrete has hardened.**
Sound familiar ?
So yes, free to remove them if they re a safety concern. You should replace them with some other 'expansion' material depending on the width of the strips, a few examples of which can be found at:
http://www.apscork.com/expansion.html and other Googled sites
Otherwise, the space will fill up with crud and weeds will sprout repeatedly. Also, depending on your Winter climate, water may enter these spaces and depending on the undermine or freeze and raise the slabs.
or more professionally speaking: EXPANSION JOINT FILLER is designed to relieve compressive stresses which develop when concreteexpands in either horizontal, vertical or inclined directions. EXPANSION JOINT FILLER prevents the intrusion of foreign material into the joint which would prevent the joint from working.
R
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