Need help from the handy types

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by ridgefire, May 17, 2008.

  1. ridgefire

    ridgefire Songster

    Jan 8, 2008
    Northern Michigan
    I have an old concrete floor in my coop. Its is all cracked and broken. I would like to some how smooth it out. I think if I just poured a few 80# bags of concrete over it, that in a year or two it would just crack and I would have to start all over.

    Any suggestions on fixing concrete?
  2. Cetawin

    Cetawin Chicken Beader

    Mar 20, 2008
    NW Kentucky
    Wow repairing concrete is a tough one. Filling it will eventually crack as you say. The only thing that comes to my mind (at this hour) is a silicone caulking type filler for the cracks. They have some really strong fillers nowadays.

    Hopefully one of the handier ones will have a solution for you. Good luck.
  3. nautical_bouy

    nautical_bouy Songster

    Mar 23, 2008
    Beaver PA
    A friend of mine, who is a union stone mason, helped me with my porch a few years ago, what he did is holding up fine.

    He used a Hilti drill and put 1'' holes every 10-12'', rolled on a bonding agent, laid wire mesh ontop of the old concrete, then put a very runny 1-1/2'' coating of masons mortar,,, the stuff with no gravel in it over top.

    It looks good and has held up much better than I expected.
  4. Quote:That is a proper solution for your situation IF....

    The problem that caused the concrete to crack up in the firdt place has been addressed. Do you know what caused it?
  5. nautical_bouy

    nautical_bouy Songster

    Mar 23, 2008
    Beaver PA
    He could allways re-bar the snot out of it and pour a 4'' floating slab over top also.
  6. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    My vote is with "if you haven't fixed why it cracked, your repair will not last long" and "if you *have* fixed the cause of the cracks, then the lasting fix is the whole-enchilada thing with rebar and new concrete".

    The cause of the cracking may be unfixable. If so, the simplest thing is to break up the concrete with a sledge where possible, to create smaller slabs and to get it to drop down into any voids underneath; then get a bunch of limestone screenings, dump 'em on and work them WELL into all cracks and pockets, tamp it down hard, and lay large concrete pavers on top. In time, they will become slightly unlevel as the concrete continues to shift, but if that ever becomes so bad you ahve to do something about it, just pull up the pavers, relevel the screenings and re-tamp, and put the pavers back.

    Or you could remove the concrete entirely, if it's real bad and you enjoy sledgehammering or jackhammering [​IMG]

    Good luck,

    Pat, with concrete slabs in ALL sorts of conditions in various places around here, none of which are our fault [​IMG]
  7. seedcorn

    seedcorn Songster

    Apr 25, 2007
    NE. IN
    I was always told there are 2 types of concrete. Those that are cracked and those that will crack.

    I'd fix with whatever a local lumber yard suggested and let it go. Pouring some more on top will hide the cracks until it cracks.......ground moves, cement doesn't, so stresses on concrete will eventually cause it to crack.
  8. Pitchfork

    Pitchfork Chirping

    Apr 11, 2008
    It is important to remember that you are fixing a chicken coop and you are not going to park a fork lift on the concrete.
    If you are seeing long cracks running like veins on the surface those are just settling cracks and you can fill them with patching compounds you can get from Lowes or Home Depot. Some are liquid and you can just pour them into the crack and they set up hard. I have used this method in garages and porches etc.
    There are a number of fiberglass reinforced cements that you can buy at places like Lowes and Home Depot. If you are just wanting to get a smooth surface, and you don't have a very broken surface I would mix up reinforced Quickcrete and just patch things up. If you use this method you can also pick up a bonding agent, again from Lowes etc. that will help your patches bond to the old concrete. Just follow the directions that come with the bonding agent. If the current floor is badly fractured then using a reinforced concrete mix simply but some wire over your floor and mix up the concrete pour it to a depth of about two inches and pull the wire up into the approx. center of the mix and let it set up. It will hold for years. When dealing with cement it is important to remember that you need to use the smallest amount of water you can in order to be able to work with the mix. Water does not evaporate in a concrete mix but is actually absorbed into the cement and the smaller the amount of water absorbed the harder it will set. This is why it is often recommended when setting fence post to just pour Quickcrete into the hole with out mixing with water. Because the mix will absorb water from the soil and set up very hard.
  9. carugoman

    carugoman Songster

    Nov 8, 2007
    NW FL Crestview
    what all the above say is good advice; I can't add much more...Just some concepts to consider. A concrete slab, 4 inches thick, should not run in any linear direction to exceed 16 ft before a control joint is to be utilized. Control joints are just that; joints in the slab to relieve tensive forces that accumulate along the linear dimensions i.e. trying to control or induce cracking along the joint lines rather than in the interior field of the slab. That's not to say that this is what happens all of the time. If you park a hydraulic press, that weighs say 3 tons in the middle of a 16 ft concrete slab? Concrete has no tensile strength of its own so adjutants such as fiberglass filaments, steel rods (rebar) and welded wire mesh(WWM) are added/placed in the wet concrete to add tensile strength to the slab, as it cures.

    Depending on your situation, ask a pro, in your locale,for a solution. Do expect to pay for the advice, but don't spend too much. It is advice on how to proceed, not a contract to do the work for you. Or ask the local building inspector. Building inspectors are required to know this stuff and most are fairly nice people, BUT not during construction season!
  10. rooster-red

    rooster-red Here comes the Rooster

    Jun 10, 2007
    Douglasville GA
    All I can do is tell you what I would do if I had the same situation:

    I would bust up & remove the concrete, level the floor as best I could, dump a fewbags of sand on it and rake it level, then go get some 12-16" concrete patio pavers, lay them out, sweep more sand across the top to fill the joints and then tamp it all in.

    Its been holding up well for my patio for a couple of years now.

    It won't hold a fork lift, but I have parked my little car on it a time or two.

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