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Old 03-21-2011, 11:50 PM   #1
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Sidewalk Joints


I recently moved into this home and there are a lot of large trees that have heaved about three sections of sidewalk. These gaps are about 3/4" wide with plywood. One section of sidewalk is flat and the joining section has raised about 1/2". Since the sidewalk has no cracks, other then these expansion joints, I decided to chip the raised edge with my rotary hammer. It did a good job and looks ok.
The raised edges were a trip hazard especially for my grandchildren so I had to do something.
Now for my question---since most of the wood filler is deteriated or missing, I need to fill the gaps. I thought about concrete but that would defeat their purpose. What would be the simplest solution, replace the wood?

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Old 03-22-2011, 12:19 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Giles View Post
.....since most of the wood filler is deteriated or missing,......replace the wood?
I think you answered your own question.
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Old 03-22-2011, 05:36 AM   #3
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Sidewalk Joints


This is a common problem around here, tree roots heaving the concrete of sidewalks and/or driveways up and around as the root system grows with time. Eventually you will have to make a decision: Remove the section of concrete, which may even have no cracks, just a major heave problem--then re-pour after removing the large tree roots which caused this. This can also lead to the problem of causing the tree to die if too many large roots are cut out, timing with the seasons is critical for this. Or: you can remove the tree causing this, eliminating the root problem. One practice around here, even with the wood spacers, is to clean out the joint about 1/2" deep and pour hot tar into the joint. This will allow expansion/contraction of the slabs, and here: keeps the ant beds from being built between the slabs. What do they do? Their colony under the slab is porous and has caused parts of slabs to break off and collapse under the weight of a vehicle.
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Old 03-22-2011, 07:02 AM   #4
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Almost everything grows in Southern California. It becomes a curse when the cute little tree you planted turns into a monster.

Here in Los Angeles the Ficus trees have damaged 4,000 Miles of sidewalks. Ficus roots can stretch as far as 90 feet from the trunk.
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Old 03-22-2011, 07:35 AM   #5
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Urethane caulk after fill the gap with foam backer rod. There is a self leveling version, but if you don't use backer rod, it will take a lot to fill the gap.
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Old 03-22-2011, 08:10 AM   #6
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Sidewalk Joints


There is also asphalt impregnated fiber board made for this. It's used here while the concrete is initially poured. I don't know how well it retrofits.
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Old 03-22-2011, 09:08 AM   #7
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Yeah around here the city uses fiber board which is an ideal expansion Joint for pavements, runways, sidewalks, and in all concrete or block structures.
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Old 03-22-2011, 09:14 AM   #8
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Do you have a picture? I'm having a really tough time visualizing how plywood fits into the sidewalk thing.

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