What is mudjacking?

Over time, homes and other structures built on floating concrete can suffer structural damage in case the slab sinks. This will cause damage to the foundation and compromise the stability of the building.

Also knows as slab jacking, mudjacking is a foundation repair method for stabilizing and raising settled concrete slabs. Used by the majority of basement repair and construction companies, it is one of the most effective repair methods. Polyjacking does a similar job to mud jacking.

Mud jacking is drilling holes to boost concrete slabs that may have settled. A mixture or combination of soil, water, and cement, better known as mud, is injected beneath the settling slab to raise it. The process requires a professional because of the special type of tools used during the foundation repair. A trained and qualified contractor should carry out the work.

MudJacking has two basic applications during repair:

Fill Voids

Most foundation issues happen because of the settling of the foundation perimeter. A contractor will therefore begin by leveling all sections that have settled using push piers. After installing the piers and raising the foundation together with the perimeter grade beam, a void is generated below the slab.

Raising of interior floors

There are situations where the interior section of the foundation slab settles. Mud jacking is the process used to reestablish the interior floors to their previous positions. This can be accomplished by drilling holes in the parts that seem to have settled and then injecting a mixture of mud beneath the concrete.

When should you use mud jacking?

There are several instances when this repair process is best:

  • Sunken porches
  • Cracked sidewalks
  • Fractured pool decks
  • Damaged driveways
  • Sagging parking lots
  • Uneven portions

In other terms, this process can raise almost any concrete slab. Nevertheless, concrete lifting is not suggested for foundation issues. If there is widespread damage in your foundation, then this may not be the right technique.

Advantages of mud jacking

  • It can be done at any time of the year regardless of the weather conditions.
  • It is a quick technique in comparison to other repair options where contractors typically have to break up the concrete before replacing it.
  • It’s cost-effective
  • Mud jacking allows almost instant use after the repair process. It requires less than 48 hours before the surface can bear any loads. This is contrary to concrete replacement that takes close to 30 days
  • It causes minimal disruptions. Meaning you can go about your activities while the repair process is ongoing

How does mud jacking work?

STEP 1: Drilling of holes

The process starts with drilling holes in the slab. The holes should be arranged in such a way that they can effectively raise the slab.

Usually, the contractor places holes between two and four feet apart. The number of holes needed will depend upon the damage caused to the foundation.

Step 2: pumping of the mixture through the holes

The next step is to create a mixture of different materials such as water, soil, sand, limestone, and others. The slurry is then forced hydraulically below the concrete using the drilled holes.

The slurry will spread out beneath the concrete slab as it is being pumped. This is supposed to fill in all the empty spaces for the purpose of stabilizing the foundation of your house. As quickly as the empty spaces are filled, the slurry becomes pressurized, hence lifting the slab.

Step 3: caulking the cracks and filling holes

This is the final step of the mad jacking process, but that doesn’t mean that the repair process is  finished. The final step is to clear up the mixture around the holes and replace them with new concrete.

Pros and Cons of Mud Jacking

Mud jacking has its advantages and disadvantages. Very similar to any time you are weighing repair options, it’s good be familiar with some of the pros and cons of any particular method.

Pros of Using Mud Jacking to Repair Your Concrete Surfaces

  • Mud jacking is less expensive than tearing out a whole concrete surface and replacing it with brand new concrete.
  • Mud jacking takes less time than ripping out and replacing concrete too. Most jobs can be done in a half a day or one full day.
  • Mud jacking is a more eco-conscious choice because the process is to restore and reuse vs. tearing down, creating unnecessary waste, and starting over.
  • The mud jacking process is far less noisy and intrusive than a full replacement. A full replacement requires heavier, louder equipment and a lot of mess on your property. Not to mention the fact you have to stay away from the construction zones and might not have access to parts of your property for a while.

Cons of Using Mud Jacking to Repair Your Concrete Surfaces

  • This process will not make cracks disappear from your concrete surfaces, it will bring the cracks together and eliminate tripping hazards but you can still see them.
  • Mud jacking leaves behind the 2-inch round repair holes on your surface. The repair team will try to make things look as nice as possible but the circles will still be there.
  • If your concrete surface is covered with a unique tile or cosmetic top treatment, you are running a risk of damage to something you might not have a replacement for or might not match back up perfectly when the job is complete.

How much does mud jacking cost?

Mud jacking is deemed to be one of the cheapest techniques to repair a foundation compared to polyjacking or any other method. It will cost you almost half the price of the most popular and traditional repair options. However, there are some factors that may impac the price. For example, the scope of the foundation damage, the company conducting the repairs among others. Leaving your damaged foundation for long without fixing it can cost you a lot in future. Don’t wait for that to happen.

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