Concrete is considered one of the most durable construction materials, but there may come a time when you need to remove a concrete driveway or slab from your home. Whether your concrete driveway has become too worn to function properly or you wish to repurpose an area that has a concrete slab, you might find yourself looking into concrete removal options.
Although you may be tempted to carry out this work on your own, there are some very compelling reasons that this is a job best left to the professionals. In fact, many people who attempt DIY concrete removal ultimately have to call in experts to finish the work, which means they end up spending significantly more money and time than necessary. Here are eight reasons this is a job best left to the professionals.
The Tools Can Be Dangerous
The biggest reason you should avoid carrying out a concrete removal project on your own is safety, particularly when it comes to operating the tools needed to carry out the job properly. Concrete demolition tools can be very heavy and difficult to control, and the potential for injury is high. Pull-in, kick-back and push-back are all problems that may arise while using concrete demolition tools, particularly for those who are inexperienced, and the results can be life-threatening.
In addition, many of the tools needed for concrete removal are operated by gas. This means that they can produce toxic fumes, so they must be used in a properly ventilated space. As these tools are used, their blades can become worn, which makes them more dangerous to operate. A professional demolition team will have the right training to use concrete removal tools safely.
The Work Is Tedious
Removing a cement structure such as a driveway is tedious work that involves many steps. First, the concrete must be broken up into pieces and then the debris needs to be moved away from the site. This can create a significant mess, and broken concrete is remarkably heavy – even the smaller pieces.
Moreover, concrete normally contains other materials that can add to the amount of work involved. Even concrete that is already deteriorating can be difficult to dismantle and break down thanks to concrete’s highly durable nature. The work is physically demanding and very time-consuming.
Contractors who specialize in concrete removal have developed highly effective and quick procedures for carrying out this tedious job safely.
Concrete Dust Is Dangerous
Any time concrete is cut or broken, it produces concrete dust that is dangerous to breathe. When it makes its way into the lungs, it can lead to irritation and illness. Another problem with concrete dust is its slick nature, which means that it creates a slip hazard on many types of surfaces. Professional concrete removal teams have tools that use water to control the dust, along with the proper safety equipment to reduce the risks of exposure.
You Could Damage Whatever Is Below The Surface
When you are carrying out a DIY concrete demolition project, you could unintentionally damage something below the surface. For example, there could be water pipes, gas pipes, sewer pipes or electric cables that supply your property with electricity. This can lead to problems that range from minor annoyances to potentially life-threatening scenarios; going without electricity is inconvenient, for example, but being electrocuted by cutting into live lines could be deadly. Professional concrete removal teams know how to avoid these types of hazards.
Breaking Up Concrete Can Be Unpredictable
Although concrete may look smooth from the outside, you might be surprised by what you find inside once you start breaking it up. Many things can be added to concrete to form it and make it more stable. During cutting or breaking, you could encounter steel mesh, rebar or other materials that require special handling.
Breaking into concrete using the wrong tools can damage the tools and cause you to injure yourself. It may even lead to structural damage that puts the project in jeopardy. You may also encounter issues such as blunt cutting edges and pinched cuts caused by incorrect techniques and tools, as well as shifting within the concrete. This can lead to kick-back, pull-in and push-back.
You Need To Remove Debris
Once the concrete has been broken up, the job is not complete. You will still need to find a place to dispose of the broken concrete. Local garbage trucks will not normally carry this debris away for you, so you will need to hire someone to haul it and dump it. However, companies that specialize in concrete removal will load the debris up onto their trucks and haul it away, which means there is no need to arrange for this on your own.
DIY Costs May Be Higher Than You Anticipate
Carrying out a DIY concrete removal project may seem cheaper initially, but by the time you add up the cost of renting the tools and equipment needed and hiring a junk removal company to haul away the broken concrete, you may find that using professional services is a far more attractive option. They will already have the tools needed, and many also include hauling in their price. In addition, these jobs can be quite time-consuming, and hiring a professional gives you more free time for other pursuits.
Many homeowners are surprised to find that concrete removal is not as expensive as they believe. Most companies offer free estimates, so homeowners can shop around and determine the most cost-effective approach.
Another reason it makes more sense to hire pros for concrete removal is that most companies will have up-to-date insurance that protects their workers, you, and your home and property should a mishap occur while the work is being carried out.
Discuss Your Project With The Northern Virginia Demolition Specialists
Dirt Connections has the right tools and expertise to carry out concrete removal projects of all sizes safely, on time and within budget. Reach out to our demolition specialists today to schedule your free estimate.
Dirt Connections was started with one goal in mind: providing quality residential and commercial construction services to clients on time and on budget. Reach out for more information on how we can support your next project.
For your convenience our estimates are free and by appointment. Call 703-940-9949 for a free estimate today!