Concrete Walkways

servicing Council Bluffs, Omaha

and surroundings

Licensed and Insured

At Nixon Construction, Inc. our team’s tremendous work ethic can deliver quality walkways and sidewalks on time and on budget. Hire us and you will get a no problem, hassle-free, pain-free experience. Our extensive list of satisfied customers can attest to that!

Are you still trying to decide and educate yourself?

Here is a list of things to consider:

What is the appropriate thickness for a residential concrete walkway?

For residential concrete, we pour a minimum 4-inch thick slab for sidewalks or walkways.  This provides a solid surface to support foot traffic and light-wheeled vehicles such as bicycles or hand carts. This 4-inch concrete slab when properly cured, is hard, durable and water-resistant.

Using 2-by-4-inch boards as forms and leaving a 1/2-inch clearance under the boards produces a 4-inch thick walkway slab.  When determining this thickness, you need to establish what kind of traffic and weight that will be using this concrete surface. Pouring thinner walkway than this lowers the load-bearing weight that the concrete can withstand. 

A uniformly compacted, well-drained subgrade is mandatory for a successful outcome. We will also need to prepare the ground with the right amount of fill material and compact it so that you won’t need to worry about cracks from the shifting soil. A properly compacted subgrade will work in conjunction with the thickness of the slab. This can guarantee a quality concrete slab.

Another important factor when installing a residential sidewalk is proper drainage. You want the concrete sidewalk to drain away from the house or other existing structures.

Does a walkway need rebar?

Reinforcement is a very important benefit to the quality of our walkways. We make sure the rebar is strategically placed and properly secured.

Rebar must be placed at the center of, or slightly above the center of the concrete slab. Hence why it should be a certain thickness for best results. When the rebar is placed too close to the surface, It can cause shadowing. The rebar should also not be placed too close to an edge. Placing it 6″ from the sides is recommended. Normally it is placed at 2′ to 3′ grid pattern centers.

To determine what size rebar you will need, it should be no larger than 1/8 of the thickness of the concrete slab.

Can a walkway be repaired?

There are a lot of things to take into consideration whether you can repair a walkway. To repair a crack, it needs to be wide enough to inject some caulk into it. You may have to open it up enough to accept the caulk. For cracks that have already opened up. You can repair it with mortar. but realize the concrete is moving and will eventually need to be replaced.

If your concrete has risen at a control joint due to a tree uprooted. That lip can be ground down. This is just a temporary fix. The piece of concrete will need to be torn out and the tree roots will need to be chopped down and a sub-base placed and compacted before pouring the concrete again.

If the top of the concrete is spalling or showing any other type of delamination. It can be topped with a skim coat product like Ardex. ( or other similar products) In order for these products to work. The concrete has to be structurally strong and all loose material removed before applying the appropriate patching material. 

If you have an issue with the concrete sinking. You have a sub-base problem. It will need to be torn out and the sub base needs to be addressed. Fill the base with appropriate fill material. It then needs to be compacted before being poured again. The concrete may need to have rebar drilled into the existing concrete to prevent this from happening again.

What type of concrete mix is used for a walkway?

There are a few things to consider when choosing the right concrete mix to use for walkways. The strength of the concrete.  A durable concrete mix design must be a minimum of 4000 psi at 28 days. 4500 is ideal.

  For outside work. You must pour with Air in your concrete. It is called air entrainment. This will allow for your concrete to absorb the conditions of a freeze-thaw cycle. As the water in moist concrete freezes, it produces pressure in the pores of the concrete. If the pressure developed exceeds the tensile strength of the concrete, the cavity will dilate and rupture. The air will help absorb the pressure from the freezing activity.

   Slumps should be 5 inches +/- 1 in. The slump should not exceed 6 inches for durable concrete. Anything more than 6 inches is too wet to use. Slumps greater than 4” will prolong the time you have to wait before finishing, particularly in cool weather. When you pour the concrete wetter ( 6″ plus), it creates a diluted product and will create problems especially at the surface.

Where do you place control and expansion joints on a walkway?

There are two types of “joints” that are used in residential work. First, I will describe a control joint. Control joints are made to “control” the cracking. Concrete will crack. By creating these control joints, the crack will not be noticeable. It will be inside or under the control joint. Both hand-cut tooling a joint, or saw cutting joints are acceptable. These will create a weak spot in the concrete and force the concrete to crack in the designated area. For spacing the control joints. You do not want them to be any farther apart than 2.5 times the thickness of the concrete. Most contractors stay under this when pouring a walkway. You will also want control joints on sharp angles such as an open corner. We know this will crack there and a control joint will be used to alleviate the appearance of a crack.

   The other type of joint that is used to control cracking is called an expansion joint. This material allows for the movement of concrete, and to relieve that stress caused by it. This occurrence is common and expected. By using an expansion joint. It allows for the absorption of the moving concrete. The expansion is most commonly made of asphalt, foam, and fiber.

We are a local contractor servicing the Council Bluffs and Omaha areas

Everyone of us are proud serving members of the community. We are hard working and take our business seriously. Our reputation is based not only on quality work but on trust. Did you see our five star reviews? Check out the maps below to see some areas we regularly perform concrete work.