Salt Lake City homes primarily use concrete for driveways, walkways, patios, pool decks, and other areas. Concrete is a durable material. But it can have problems like sinking, which you can resolve through concrete leveling. This process has two common types, namely mudjacking and polyjacking.
But what is mudjacking? How is that different from polyjacking? Which one is better?
One of the main reasons for sunken concrete is soil sinking or eroding underneath a concrete slab. Soil could become compact or wash away due to extreme weather conditions or daily wear and tear. A void appears between the soil and the concrete so the concrete sinks.
Mudjacking fills the void with mud slurry. This process lifts the concrete back into its proper level.
This process is the go-to method of concrete leveling. But professionals consider it as a somewhat temporary solution since you’re filling the void with wet soil, which could contract when dried or wash away again during the next storm.
Additionally, since the original soil is already unstable, adding more soil on top of it could just compound the underlying problem. The concrete could sink even more after mudjacking.
It’s also a very messy process because mud is forcefully pumped into large holes drilled into the concrete slabs. The pressure of the pump will inevitably splatter mud on top of the slabs and in the general vicinity of the work.
Enter technological advances in the industry.
This process is also called foam jacking because it uses polyurethane foam to fill the void between the soil and the concrete slab.
The foam is pumped into the void through small holes drilled into the concrete. It initially flows like water so it can go into even small cracks. It expands as it dries. It hardens and becomes waterproof when it is completely dry. So, it lifts the concrete and compresses the soil at the same time, providing a solid and dense filling in between.
Which type is better?
Mudjacking and polyjacking have their pros and cons.
Mudjacking is relatively less expensive than polyjacking. It uses environment-friendly materials. All contractors know the process. But it can be a temporary solution and you might need to have mudjacking done annually. Mudjacking also can be aesthetically unpleasant. Although your contractor will fill up the holes for the process, the resulting concrete will be visibly different from the rest of the slab.
On the other hand, polyjacking is lightweight, compact, and durable. It can fill all the cavities of the void underneath the sunken concrete slab. It is waterproof so it will protect the soil underneath from further erosion. The holes drilled to pump it underneath the concrete are small, which will not be visible when filled.
But polyjacking can be expensive and not many contractors can do it properly. Also, even though it is used for a variety of commercial and consumer products, polyurethane foam is an artificial rubber that may leak chemicals into the environment.
Concrete leveling is important for a variety of reasons, foremost is safety. Check the pros and cons of the two types of concrete leveling so you can make a smart decision for your problem.