Do you have a project coming up where you will be breaking apart some existing concrete in order to install something else in its place? Concrete breaking can be back breaking work and might be best handled by a professional contractor. But if you want to give it a shot, you'll need to make sure you are prepared for the job if you want to get things done quickly and safely. Here are three tips to keep in mind.
You're not going to get anything done unless you have the correct tools for the job. If the concrete is not especially deep and is not reinforced, a sledge hammer will usually suffice. But if the concrete does is more than four or five inches, you will want to use something with a little more power. A hammer drill or jack hammer can be purchased at a local home improvement store.
The gear you need to buy for a concrete breaking job does not stop at tools. You will also want to purchase protective wear to shield yourself from the flying concrete. You'll want hard, sturdy work boots with reinforced toes in case a chunk of concrete lands near your foot. Safety goggles and heavy duty gloves are also a must. Wear long pants and a long shirt to shield your skin from the concrete as well.
Start at the Surface
In order to break up the compactness of the concrete, start with a surface cut. Use a power saw to cut out a hole in the center of the concrete, as deep as you can get the saw in without causing an issue. This center piece can be taken out, which will then weaken the surrounding area and make it much easier to break up.
Work Your Way Inside
Once the surface cut is made, pick a corner and start moving towards the center piece that you cut out. You will likely chip away just small chunks at first but as you get closer to the surface cut, you can expect big chunks to eventually start falling off. Then, go to another corner and repeat. This process will mean the initial breaking might go slowly but it will exponentially speed up as more and more concrete is broken.
If you insist on doing some concrete breaking yourself instead of hiring a professional, make sure you are prepared with the right tools and protective gear. When breaking concrete, start with a surface cut in the center of the project area to weaken the concrete throughout the block. Work from the outside towards the surface cut and the job will get easier as you move along. If all else fails, there's no shame in calling a local concrete contractor for assistance. Contact a business, such as Garrett Concrete Cutting, Coring & Sawing Inc - Chino, for more information.