Avoid These Common “Do It Yourself” Mistakes When Cutting Concrete

Cutting concrete can be necessary when you want to remodel your house and need to expand the foundation in certain areas or run plumbing pipes behind the basement walls. You may also need to pull up an old driveway to have it repaved or underpinned. While cutting concrete is not overly difficult, it's also not like cutting wood or other such materials. You can handle the job on your own with the proper tools and knowhow, but if you're like many homeowners, you might make a few simple mistakes along the way. Note a few of those here so you can be sure you avoid them when you're cutting concrete at home.

1. Not holding down materials properly

Cutting concrete can mean having parts of it chip and break from vibration and other excess movement, but trying to manually hold down the materials can mean not holding onto your saw with both hands as you should. Using an anchor to keep materials down and in place will reduce the risk of accidents and broken concrete or the need to use your hands. Be sure you understand the anchors you need to use and how to use them when you're ready to cut concrete at home.

2. Using too fast of a drill speed

Homeowners often assume that with drilling and cutting, faster is better. In truth, when you're cutting concrete, trying to cut too quickly can mean actually making a mess of the job overall. You may kick up too much dust when you push the drill or saw through the concrete or cause it to crack or break. Masonry bits and blades often become sharper as they work, so cutting too fast can mean a dull blade that just pushes the concrete rather than cuts it. Know the right speed to use when cutting concrete so you do it properly.

3. Not calling a professional when needed

Making small cuts in a driveway or wall can be easy enough, but if there are plumbing pipes under the driveway or a buried sprinkler system, or electrical wires and other such materials behind your basement walls, you want to call an expert to do this cutting. This is also true if the concrete is very thick such as for an underpinned foundation or driveway that already has underpinning. These jobs can be more complicated than you realize, as you need to work around these hidden materials and know the right bits and blades to cut through thick, hardened concrete without breaking it or breaking your equipment.

For more information, contact a local concrete cutting company.