Concrete Leveling

What is concrete leveling?

Concrete leveling is a process used to raise sunken or uneven concrete surfaces. Over time, concrete can settle, which can result in uneven surfaces, trip hazards, and drainage issues. To solve these problems, we inject a specially formulated material beneath the sunken concrete slab, filling the void and raising it to the desired level. This process has many different names, including mud jacking or slab jacking.

A void between soil and the bottom of slab filling up with a foam to lift the concrete back to level.

What causes a concrete slab to settle?

A slab of concrete can settle due to various factors, including:

  1. Poor soil compaction during the construction process.
  2. Soil erosion or consolidation over time.
  3. Changes in soil moisture content, such as excessive drying or saturation.
  4. Plumbing leaks or improper drainage that affects the soil beneath the slab.
  5. Tree roots grow underneath the slab, causing soil displacement.
  6. Soil shrinkage or swelling due to clay content.
  7. Poorly designed or inadequate foundation support.
  8. External factors like earthquakes or vibrations.

Identifying the underlying cause of the slab settlement is essential to implement appropriate repair measures. 

A close up photo of the device that sprays foam beneath a slab when doing concrete leveling.

How does the concrete leveling method work?

Slab leveling involves injecting a specially formulated industrial-grade poly concrete leveling foam beneath the sunken slab. This material fills voids and raises the sheet to its desired level. The process typically starts by drilling small holes into the concrete, strategically placed to allow access for the injection of the leveling material. The grout or foam is then injected under pressure, filling the voids and raising the slab. This is why this method is sometimes called foam concrete lifting or leveling.

What are the costs of mud jacking?

The cost of concrete lifting can vary depending on several factors, such as the size of the area to be leveled, the extent of the damage or unevenness, and the accessibility of the site.

The biggest cost factor is the size of the area to be leveled, which ranges from around $3 to $10 per square foot. Overall, leveling is a cost-effective approach to foundation repair when it is a viable option since the average cost of replacement of a concrete slab is much higher than that of a leveling project.

Why use concrete leveling repair over other forms of foundation repair?

Concrete leveling solutions offer several advantages over traditional methods of repairing concrete. It is a cost-effective solution compared to complete concrete replacement. It is also quicker and less disruptive, not requiring removing and replacing the entire slab. Additionally, raising a slab can help restore the functionality and aesthetic appeal of the concrete floor.

Concrete leveling services are the right choice for many situations, but consulting with trained leveling technicians is important to determine if it will work for your case.

A concrete leveling machine spraying foam under a concrete driveway through drilled holes.

Does concrete leveling work for all types of concrete repair projects?

While it doesn’t work for everything, this versatile approach can address several common issues. Here are some projects where it is commonly used:

  1. Driveway leveling: Irregular or sunken concrete driveways can be leveled to restore a smooth surface for vehicles and enhance curb appeal.

  2. Sidewalks and walkways: Bumpy or collapsed sidewalk concrete and walkways can be flattened to prevent tripping hazards and ensure safe and easy pedestrian access.

  3. Concrete patios and pool decks: Sunk or uneven concrete surfaces in outdoor patios can be leveled to create a flat and stable foundation for furniture, fixtures, and recreational activities.

  4. Garage floors: Depressed or sloping floors in a garage can be leveled to create a smooth and level surface for vehicles and storage.

  5. Basement floors: Asymmetrical or settled basement floors can be leveled to create a stable and even surface, enhancing the functionality of the space and preventing water pooling.

While it effectively addresses issues such as unevenness, settling, sinking, and minor cracks in concrete surfaces, this method doesn’t work for all concrete issues. Here are some instances where it may not be appropriate:

  1. Severely cracked or damaged concrete: If the concrete has extensive damage, such as large cracks or significant deterioration, it may require more extensive repairs or complete replacement.

  2. Structural issues: Mudjacking is not designed to address underlying structural problems. 

  3. Unstable soil conditions: Slab jacking relies on the stability of the underlying soil. Loose soil can’t support the foam lifting the slab, so additional soil stabilization may be required first. Extra soil might be added to offset unstable soil where possible. 

In such cases, consulting with a professional concrete leveling company that can do a proper foundation inspection, assess the specific situation, and provide expert guidance on the best solution for your problems is recommended.

Frequently Asked Questions

What causes the slab to rise?

Many people think pressure raises the concrete, but in the case of expanding structural foam leveling, it is the expansion of air bubbles as the liquid resin reacts and becomes structural foam. The foam follows the path of least resistance and seeks out pockets of space where there are voids in unstable soil and expands, compacting the soil below.

Can foam really support the weight of concrete?

Some closed-cell polymer foams have baseline lifting capabilities of 6,000 pounds per square foot, and leveling procedures have been performed on loads as high as 125 tons. Some are even stronger, and tests show leveling with polyurethane foam can support a lot of weight.  

Where do you do concrete leveling jobs?

Ready to go?

Contact us today to get a free concrete leveling estimate for your project.