Concrete cutting: How the pros do it


Cutting concrete isn't a task that can be left to intuition. Even professionals make mistakes. The reasons to perform such a task span far and wide. It may be a feat to widen narrow gaps, create slots for doors and windows, or even be a necessity before installing new plumbing fixtures. Whatever the reason, cutting concrete needs to be done right, and these tips will enable you to do your best.

Check your environs

Before you make any cut, do your research. The floor may be networked with a number of plumbing lines or electrical wiring. A quick look at the building's blueprint can give you a very good idea what you are dealing with.

Also ensure you are aware of the width of the concrete before diving in and whether it's reinforced or not. This will assist you in picking your tools. Thinner concrete can be cut using simple equipment such as sledge hammers.

Get the proper tools

While this may sound like a no brainer, most DIYers fail to properly grasp the gravity of the matter. Some concrete floors are lined with steel so avoid using jackhammers and circular saws. Such equipment isn't powerful enough for the steel reinforcement. A popular choice would be to use diamond blades because they can get to the toughest of surfaces. Additionally, go for the wet saws because they would get rid of the dust and control the silica content. Sometimes, the heat produced may be immense. Pouring water helps cool down the blade and facilitates a deeper cut.

Guide your cut

Before the real cut, you can demarcate the area you want to cut first using a chalk or ink. This is a good way to make your cut clean. Afterwards you can drill as deep as you can cautiously following the chalk line. For the best results, lean the saw away from the area that is to remain intact. This keeps the edges intact and less messy.

For vertical cuts, it's important to have a way of perfectly straightening the cut. Place aluminium tracks on the surface to guide the saw as you slowly make your cut. The aluminium tracks would also help you cut deeper and reduce the number of passes required.

Final thoughts

Cutting through concrete needs to be done with safety in mind. Sometimes the building can contain dangerous materials such as asbestos and lead. It's best to test the concrete first before starting any intense cutting. If you've got any doubts, then the best thing to do would be to call the professionals. Otherwise you risk not only making a mess, but also endangering your life.


7 October 2015

Repairing Reusing or Recycling Broken Concrete: A Concrete Blog

If you have broken concrete around your property, you need to be creative about how you deal with it. You can tear it out, you can fix it or you can reuse the concrete in another area. Hi, my name is Betty, and I am a firm advocate of reducing waste and reusing things. I take this attitude to every part of my life, including my concrete. I own a business and a home, and I have concrete around both of them. Over the years, I have hired contractors to do repairs and a number of other things. I have also done a lot of research. Want ideas? Check out my posts. Cheers!