How do I avoid having concrete or mortar crack in the freezing-thawing cycle?

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Question: How do I avoid having concrete or mortar crack in the freezing-thawing cycle?

Answer:

While it is true that concrete construction and mortar construction are subject to cracking in northern climes, due to the freezing-thawing cycle, there's something you can do to avoid this:

You must build a base that is deep enough in the ground that the freezing-thawing cycle will not affect it. Check with your local building inspector for the exact depth.


The base, in turn, will typically rest on gravel, because gravel provides good drainage (remember, it is moisture in conjunction with the freezing-thawing cycle that will cause you problems).

For more detailed information about avoiding cracking in concrete construction projects, please consult How To Build Concrete Patios.

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