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Thread: Sand blasted driveway - any major downsides vs a typical concrete one?

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    Default Sand blasted driveway - any major downsides vs a typical concrete one?

    Recently built a new home, driveway has shown alot of deterioration after one winter. I contacted the builder and after inspecting it they are giving us the option to remove the current one and get it re-poured, or sand blast the current one. We do like the look of the sand blasted one, but I'm not too familiar with it, are there any major drawbacks I should be aware of? It doesn't seem to be completely flat so I'm already thinking shoveling and ice build up in the crevices/pits will be an issue during the winter months.

    Thanks

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    This is often done to deal with a bad finishing job. I would lean towards the replacement option if they are offering it. Concrete that is intended to be exposed has a higher aggregate content then a mix that is intended for a broom finish. This means if they sand blast what is there it will not look as nice as it should. The other issue is often concrete tends to spall when the finishers have added to much water. If it's added only while finishing this only effects the surface and results in spalling or if it was added in the drum it would effect the whole slab.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gcoap View Post
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    This is often done to deal with a bad finishing job. I would lean towards the replacement option if they are offering it. Concrete that is intended to be exposed has a higher aggregate content then a mix that is intended for a broom finish. This means if they sand blast what is there it will not look as nice as it should. The other issue is often concrete tends to spall when the finishers have added to much water. If it's added only while finishing this only effects the surface and results in spalling or if it was added in the drum it would effect the whole slab.
    Good point, didn't think about the aggregate content thats already in our current driveway. If we can't get a good amount of density, I would opt for just having it re-poured and broom finished. Will be meeting with someone from the concrete company this week.

    Is a sand blasted driveway usually quite a bit more expensive than broom finished? Or is it the other way around?

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    Exposed aggregate is way more expensive.

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    I would have them re-pour it, especially if its been done by rolling mix
    They sandblasted mine and I'm finding it impossible to stop it from pitting rapidly. I seal it every year or two years and mine is about 8 years old. Thinking about getting it re-poured already as it looks like shit

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    I had a section repoured on mine after a couple years. I think this would be the better option. The color won't match for a long time though if they only replace a section so it kind of looks goofy.

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    Quote Originally Posted by nagooro View Post
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    Recently built a new home, driveway has shown alot of deterioration after one winter. I contacted the builder and after inspecting it they are giving us the option to remove the current one and get it re-poured, or sand blast the current one. We do like the look of the sand blasted one, but I'm not too familiar with it, are there any major drawbacks I should be aware of? It doesn't seem to be completely flat so I'm already thinking shoveling and ice build up in the crevices/pits will be an issue during the winter months.

    Thanks
    Get them to rip it out and do it properly. The exposed look you like you won't achieve with the current driveway because the concrete formula is different. The rock used is different.. When you get the new concrete done make sure you apply a sealer to is after.
    "if you disagree with my views are cannot adequately my criticism then ignore my posts." - Nusc

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    In terms of Rolling Mix it probably wasn't the concrete that was bad rather the finishing job. Could have been too hot and the concrete didn't set right. Could have got rained on...there are a bunch of issues that can make that happen. Rolling Mix generally has good concrete all be it more expensive than some of the other majors.
    "if you disagree with my views are cannot adequately my criticism then ignore my posts." - Nusc

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    Quote Originally Posted by Maxx Mazda View Post
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    Exposed aggregate is way more expensive.
    I'm paying $2 more per square foot for exposed to do the pad in front of my house/garage. Didn't seem to be too bad.

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    Well, glad I posted here. Was initially going to get it sand blasted as we liked the look more than the broom finish, but seems like a complete re-pour might be the way to go.

    For reference, below are three sets of pics.

    1. A neighbors proper aggregate driveway
    2. My current driveway (with spalling)
    3. What ours would look like if we got it sand blasted. (A house down the street had their broom finish sand blasted due to issues similar to ours, so ours would essentially look like that)



    ypoD6yT.jpg


    AMKP3w6.jpg


    O7wnB8h.jpg

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    I had my broom finished sandblasted. It looks like your third picture. Ive had no issues since they did this a couple of years ago. The reason mine was sandblasted was due to rain after it being poured.

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    That actually doesn’t look bad at all.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Maxx Mazda View Post
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    That actually doesn’t look bad at all.
    The 3rd pic?

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    I vote for sandblasting. You'll almost get the look of exposed aggregate without having to pay for the upgrade and I think the sandblasted isn't as slippery as exposed aggregate when wet.

    There's no guarantees there won't be spalling again if they repour and the builder might be less reluctant to redo it again. Cracks that'll probably form in a few years will be less obvious in the sandblast too.

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    Quote Originally Posted by goldfish168 View Post
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    I vote for sandblasting. You'll almost get the look of exposed aggregate without having to pay for the upgrade and I think the sandblasted isn't as slippery as exposed aggregate when wet..
    Not slippery at all and no issues shoveling in the winter with a metal bladed shovel.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Maxx Mazda View Post
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    That actually doesn’t look bad at all.
    That looks sandy as hell. Go look at a good exposed concrete slab and you will see the difference.

    Quote Originally Posted by goldfish168 View Post
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    I vote for sandblasting. You'll almost get the look of exposed aggregate without having to pay for the upgrade and I think the sandblasted isn't as slippery as exposed aggregate when wet.

    There's no guarantees there won't be spalling again if they repour and the builder might be less reluctant to redo it again. Cracks that'll probably form in a few years will be less obvious in the sandblast too.
    Exposed is usually slippery due to sealer without grit. Cracks are just as obvious with an exposed slab as they are with a broom finish.

    And to be clear exposed is the look of the concrete. It is usually a different mix then 32MPA Duramix which is normally used for driveways and exposed mix will usually have 10mm round aggregate instead of 14mm or 20mm. Some companies will still use Duramix for exposed and then wash or sandblast it. Both sandblasting and pressure washing are often used depending on the situation to expose the aggregate. The only difference you will see between sandblasting and washing is slight pitting on the aggregate with blasting but unless you are looking for it you won't notice it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gcoap View Post
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    That looks sandy as hell. Go look at a good exposed concrete slab and you will see the difference.



    Exposed is usually slippery due to sealer without grit. Cracks are just as obvious with an exposed slab as they are with a broom finish.

    And to be clear exposed is the look of the concrete. It is usually a different mix then 32MPA Duramix which is normally used for driveways and exposed mix will usually have 10mm round aggregate instead of 14mm or 20mm. Some companies will still use Duramix for exposed and then wash or sandblast it. Both sandblasting and pressure washing are often used depending on the situation to expose the aggregate. The only difference you will see between sandblasting and washing is slight pitting on the aggregate with blasting but unless you are looking for it you won't notice it.
    I would agree it is quite a bit sandy, but for a sand blasted driveway, in which it was never meant to be, doesn't seem too bad?

    Meeting with the concrete company tomorrow afternoon. From a financial standpoint, im assuming sand blasting is quite a bit cheaper for the company versus removal and re-pour?

    I like the look of the "half-assed" version of the sand blasting/aggregate over our current broom finish. My main concern is longevity, in 5-10 years which will stand the test of time.

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    If you can get the company to rip it out AND DO IT PROPERLY, do it. Sandblasting regular concrete doesn't look like a proper exposed driveway. IN both cases you should put a sealer on it once it is done.
    "if you disagree with my views are cannot adequately my criticism then ignore my posts." - Nusc

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    Sandblasting is likely around $1.00 per sqft. Removal and replacement your looking closer to $14.00 per sqft. It's surprising they are even offering it. I'm not a big fan of blasting a driveway that has surface issues. To me it looks like a worn driveway. Some people like the look but to me it looks like what it often is which is someone trying to take the easy way out.

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    Re-pour would be the way to go, trying to fix something that is already ruined will be just a "patch up" job.

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