new driveway -- cracked already?

I had a contractor put in a new concrete driveway in last August (poured in 35 degree Celsius temperatures). By mid-September, it had developed a crack already about 6 feet long (and even a small triangle about 6" big had cracked as well.). The crack is right where I suggested an expansion joint should be put, but the contractor said that he wasn't going to put in one in that spot. We have a brutal expansive soil problem here called "Regina Gumbo".
This spring I noticed another crack on another section of the driveway about the same length.
1) Do I have a legitimate "beef" with this contractor? He told me that cracks are going to develop over time, but should they develop this soon?
2) Is there a complaint process I should go through?
3) should I seal the cracks up? If "Yes", with what?
Howie
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You were paying the contractor and he refused to put in an expansion joint when it was requested? Who was the customer in this relationship?
RB
Howie wrote:

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I asked him if he was putting one in that spot he said no... It cracked in that spot.

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i think his point was that since you were the customer you should have insisted. seeing that he didnt do it, and im not saying i wouldnt have done the same thing since i dont know a damn thing about concrete and would have probably taken the guys word, its good ammo when it comes time for your day in court.
randy

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Complaint process.
1. You contact the contractor and give him a reasonable opportunity to 'fix' the problem.
2. At the end of that time, you sue the contractor and any 3rd parties such as insurer or bonding company.
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What does your written contract say. Written Warranty?
You didn't get anything in writing? You are probably SOL unless you can show he deviated from "normal standards" in your area that is what you would have to prove in court. That the work that he did does not meet the standards in your area that he should have known about?
You don't mention how wide or long the driveway is or how thick the pour was!
Wayne
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thickness of pour about 4", width 103". Length (3 sections): #1 - approx 12' (from 9' X 7' garage door to corner of house), #2 - 14' (alongside house), #3 - 20' (alongside house and extending to edge of existing driveway).
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the sections were all poured the same day. The sections were made by dividing them with a special kind of trowel that makes a deep groove (2-3" ?) ...
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I would surmise that the 14' and the 20' sections cracked. It has been my experience that concrete flat work does not like to be more than 12' without a construction or contraction joint. Concrete will also crack at re-entrant corners and places where it is locked against a building or existing pavement.
Concrete is not warranted against cracking in my experience. I would certainly never offer it. As often said in the industry - I guarantee 2 things. It will get hard and it will crack. The trick is to get it to crack in nice lines either with saw cuts or tooled joints, but even well placed joints are not a guarantee.
If the cracks are tight, just leave them alone. If they over an 1/8" you might consider using a concrete router or v-groover to increase the joint, install backer rod and seal with urethane. Here are 2:
Vulkem: http://www.tremcosealants.com/catalog.asp?navMode=0&catalog_id (&parent_id&bhfv=5
Sonneborn SL 1: http://www.degussabuildingsystems.com/productcatalog/productListing.asp?catId 6
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ Keep the whole world singing. . . . DanG
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"Howie" wrote in message

Depending on the size of aggregate used along with this 4" pour, the contractor has way too big of control joints. Maximum size with less than a 3/4" aggregate should be a 8'x10' section. With a larger than 3/4" aggregate, the sections could be 10'x10'. Time to raise hell
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The only fix is grinding in a joint , grinding the crack and filling with mortar. and Small claims.
If the Jack Ass was to lazy a Hack to put in a joint waiting for his response will be a waste, file Small Claim tomorrow full amount. Complain to ? you local Gov is best, the BBB is a joke.
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"Howie" wrote in message

Are you referring you suggested a expansion joint, or control joint (saw cut)? There is a difference. You don't give enough information such as: was a new base installed and compacted, thickness of pour, how far apart are the control joints, the sac of mix used. Hopefully the contractor used wire to help control the heave once its cracks. If by chance he used the fiberglass additive to the concrete thinking he could eliminate important steps, he made a huge mistake often made by rookies. BTW, no concrete contractor in my area will guarantee against cracks, it's virtually impossible to guarantee against cracks even with the appropriate steps attempting to control where it cracks. The important issue is if he short cut the job.
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