If you want to add concrete paths to your home, doing it yourself can save you a lot of money. Before you begin, you will need the following:
- a mixer
- a concrete trowel
- a push broom
- form boards
Once you are ready to start making your own concrete path, use these four steps to help you complete the project:
1. Marking Off The Area For Paths
Before you start pouring concrete, you will want to mark the area where your paths will go. This can be done with spray paint to see how it looks first. Once it is marked, continue by digging out the area a couple of inches and removing any plants or grass. This will also give the concrete a firm surface to rest on once it's cured.
2. Setting Strings To Start Setting Forms
Once you have the paths marked, you will want to set strings for the forms. This can be done with stakes and a string. You want the string to be a few inches above where the top of the concrete will be. This will help you measure to ensure that sections of concrete are straight.
3. Installing Forms And Dividers
Once you have the strings, you will need to set forms. The forms need to be below the string and nailed to the stakes. Measure each end of forms to make sure they are the same. If you are installing concrete on a slope, you can use different string heights. To prevent concrete from pouring out of the bottom of the forms, fill the back side of them with soil. For large sections, divide the concrete with dividers to prevent cracking.
4. Pouring And Finishing The Concrete
Once the forms are in place, you will be ready to pour the concrete. Mix gravel, sand and Portland cement to make the concrete. You can also get premixed bags, which will make this job easier. Pour the concrete in the forms and plane it off with the trowel. If you want a rough textured surface, run a push broom across the top. If you want a smooth surface, wait for the concrete to cure a little, and then use a trowel and water to smooth the concrete.
These are some tips to help you complete your own concrete path. If you need help getting your own concrete done, contact a ready-mix concrete service, like R Pepin & Sons Inc, to get the materials delivered already mixed. They can also provide you with precast concrete for many of the projects you may want to complete.