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Mudjacking and polyurethane offer solutions to uneven concrete without replacement. But what is the difference between the two methods? Why would you choose one over the other? Let’s take a look.
Mudjacking pumps concrete (or mud) under a building, driveway or other sunken concrete to lift it. A specialized hydraulic pump pushes the mud mix into small holes drilled in the slabs. This method is the traditional way to fix cracked, sinking and uneven concrete.
With the polyurethane option, specialized polyurethane foam is used in place of the mud. The foam expands after filling the holes drilled in the concrete slab. As the material expands, the concrete is lifted.
Fewer and smaller holes (an inch smaller) are drilled when choosing the polyurethane over the mudjacking method. This quality leads to a cleaner looking job. Plus, fewer resources and heavy equipment are required meaning a neater job site.
Since mudjacking relies on underlying soils to support the lifted concrete, contractors are not able to guarantee the work. The same elements which lead to cracking and sinking impact the new underlying mud mix as well.
In contrast, polyurethane injection causes a chemical reaction with underlying soils which stabilizes the soil and concrete. This method proves longer lasting as the material does not fracture or fail.
Mudjacking poses environmental concerns. First, concrete can fill sewer lines as a result of the inaccuracy of the process. Also, this method requires a new product that does not biodegrade.
Pumping non-toxic polyurethane, on the other hand, allows for more control which protects surrounding areas. Furthermore, the material proves biodegradable when exposed to sunlight (i.e. in a landfill years down the road). And the recycled material is used to create the foam.
The cost of mudjacking runs cheap. However, there is the added expense of no guarantee or warranty. The need to repeat the process also arises. If you are currently on a tight budget, this may be your only option.
However, while polyurethane costs more upfront, the long-term costs and potential cleanup and repair costs prove significantly less. Plus, polyurethane foam cures in minutes which eliminates loss of time using the repaired areas.
If you are avoiding the decision to level your concrete, beware. Neglected, uneven concrete does not repair itself. In fact, it gets worse over time. And the added sinking requires more cash to repair and more structural and safety issues to address.
Don’t put it off any longer. Get help leveling your concrete today by requesting a free concrete leveling estimate from Mr. Level.