While concrete is an extremely durable material, it is virtually impossible to pour a large concrete
slab or driveway and have no cracking or settling, over time. When the dirt beneath the driveway
begins to settle it often creates hariline cracks in the concrete surface. Nearby tree and bush roots
can often grow underneath the driveway which also may cause cracks in the concrete over time.
Heavy vehicles and large machinery can also contribute to cracks that form in a driveway or parking
Just like in a windshield, once a crack in the concrete occurs, no matter how tiny, it continues to
grow. In colder regions of the country where freeze/thaw cycles are common, water can seep into
even the smallest of cracks and freeze which causes the crack to expand over time. That is why it is
so important for home owners to repair concrete cracks as soon as possible to prevent the
freeze/thaw cycle from worsening the damage.
If the freeze/thaw cycle is not halted early on the cracks begin to grow larger and eventually small
amounts of dirt, sand and dust make their way into the cracks. Once the cracks reach that size it is
only a matter of time before plants and grasses begin to fill the cracks, further widening them and
damaging the concrete. If this process is allowed to carry on unchecked eventually larger plants and
grasses begin to grow inside the crack until the only option really is to remove and replace that
section of the concrete driveway or sidewalk.
Concrete Crack Filler
As we’ve described above, it is best to fill in small cracks in your concrete surface as part of a
routine maintenance plan in order to avoid more expensive concrete damage repairs. There are a
variety of concrete crack filler available and all have varying results. As with most things in life, the
less expensive filler products typically don’t’ work as well and produce inferior results. We
recommend using a higher quality filler in order to attain more long-lasting results.
Concrete filler caulk is typically on the low-priced end of the spectrum and usually comes in either a
squeeze bottle or caulking tube. You can simply squeeze the caulk into the cracks on your concrete
surface. While caulk is simple to use for the DIYer but typically the repair does not last very long and
in some cases the cracks reemerge worse than ever. Caulk concrete crack filler is fine for a quick
and inexpensive short-term fix but it is not recommended as a long-term fix.
A better option for longer-term repair fixes are specialty cement mix that comes in small pails.
Containters range in size from a quart to up to a 2 gallon size. These mixes already contain the
necessary cement and bonding agents. Water just needs to be added before use. Fair warning –
very small cracks are often difficult to fill with this filler. You will need to work the filler into the crack
using a trowel or other small tool in order to get the filler into the crack. If completed properly this
filler results in a long lasting repair.
A third long-lasting repair option is to use non-shrink grout with added concrete glue. Grout is a
concrete product, however it needs the addition of sand or gravel to be strong and bond well with the
surrounding cement in order to fill the crack properly. Concrete glue can be found in hardware stores
and comes in quart size jars. Simply mix the concrete glue into the grout mix for added strength. The
glue also allows the grout to bond properly.