What is the cost of concrete removal?
The cost to remove concrete varies by region, the amount of concrete that needs to be removed, and the disposal fees. If contractors in your area are able to haul the concrete to a relatively inexpensive recycler, you can save significant money over having to pay "per ton" dump fees at the landfill. Here are a few examples of concrete removal costs:
- A modest patio or sidewalk (i.e. 200 sq. ft.) may be removed by a contractor with heavy equipment in some parts of the country for $400 - $600, though the cost can be significantly more if the concrete cannot be recycled.
- Demolishing and removing the concrete from a typical two car driveway will likely cost $1500 to $2500 and up. The size of the driveway is the major determining factor in the cost. Also, if the driveway was completed with reinforced concrete, then it's more difficult to remove and the cost to remove may go up.
- Removal of a concrete foundation for a basement may cost between $2000 and $5000, depending on your region, the size of the basement, and concrete disposal fees.
Should I remove the concrete or just repair it?
Generally, complete concrete removal is your best option if any of the following are occurring on your driveway, patio, sidewalk, or slab:
- Multiple cracks - wide and deep cracks that are uneven (settled on one side) mean that patching is not likely to work well
- Frost heave - part of the concrete is pushed up due to the frost that occurs in colder climates
- Settled or sunken concrete - if the concrete settled because the sub grade was not properly prepared, removal and replacement is the best option. If the sunken concrete is due to some heavy equipment or load that was placed on the concrete, then it may be possible to just raise and level the existing concrete
If your driveway, patio, or sidewalk only has thin cracks and there is no evidence of settling, it may suffice to simply patch the cracks. But if there is more widespread damage, patching the cracks and resurfacing the concrete may end up a waste of money... as the same problems will be back shortly.
How do concrete removal contractors demolish and remove concrete slabs?
There are many tools that concrete demolition contractors may use to demolish concrete. The most common is a bobcat with a hydraulic or pneumatic breaker attachment, like the one in the picture above. Usually, the contractor will have a roll off dumpster on site. After the concrete is broken, the bobcat loads the concrete into the dumpster and the dumpster is hauled away to a landfill or concrete recycler.
Can concrete removed from my driveway or patio be recycled?
Yes. Most metro areas have concrete recycling facilities, enabling your former patio or driveway to be diverted from the landfill. Concrete recyclers crush the concrete and reuse it as an aggregate in new cement.