Building a Cement Sidewalk

Building a Cement Sidewalk - Handyman

If you want to enhance the curb appeal of your home and replace that ugly, old, cracked path, building a cement sidewalk might be an excellent idea. You could either complete this relatively simple project on your own, or you could try to find a competent landscaper living and working in your area, who would gladly lend a helping hand, allowing you to finish this task on time and on a budget while taking pride in spectacular results.

What type of materials should I buy for my project?

You should know that the most recommended material for your new sidewalk is by far a concrete mix, based on aggregates like gravel, crushed stone and sand, and paste, obtained after mixing water and cement. Concrete is a cost-efficient, maintenance-free, durable material giving you more bang for your buck, so this particular material might be indeed the ideal option at hand when it comes to building a cement sidewalk.

Prepare the tools and do your homework

1. While in most regions you don’t need a special approval to build a cement sidewalk on your property, in some areas you have to obtain a building permit before implementing any changes. To avoid embarrassing situations and a fine, make sure you contact your local building inspector first, and ask them whether you need a permit or not.

2. Next, gather all of the necessary tools, including rakes, shovels, wheelbarrows, and professional concrete finishing utensils.

Getting down to business

3. Define the layout, using hardboard siding, a spacer block and marking paint.

4. Establish grades by using a laser. If you’d rather opt for a simpler, cheaper method, rely on a line level and on a string line to come up with a flawless sidewalk design.

5. Afterward, start digging. Use a shovel and a premium sod cutter to remove the excess soil. If you’re usually dealing with drainage problems, it is recommended to elevate the sidewalk a bit.

6. Once you’ve finished excavating the area, start forming the sidewalk by using rigid, yet extremely flexible pieces of plywood.

7. Use a string line and form pins buried in the ground to guide your next steps in the right direction.

8. Pour the necessary amount of concrete and roll it properly by utilizing your concrete roller.

9. Cut the edges with a stick edger and eliminate all imperfections by using a magnesium float.

Ask for help

Building a cement sidewalk requires lots of time, more than a few tools, and special skills. If you don’t have what it takes to complete this project on your own, simplify your mission by contracting a local handyman. Find the best ones in your area by consulting TalkLocal, your trusted source of information designed to help you meet reputable specialists who live and work in your area.

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