How to Find a Good Patio Contractor
Have you decided you want a flagstone, limestone or concrete patio for your TEXAS home. Wondering how to get it done and who you should use? Well, I’m going to tell you how. I’m going to give you a step by step process stating the 3 red flags that signal a bad or uneducated [tag] contractor. These 3 things will ensure you get it done the right way, by the right top concrete contractors contractor in TEXAS .
Steps To Finding The Right Concrete Contractor in TEXAS
First step, first things first. Every Stone Installation Needs A Concrete Footing which might also be called a concrete foundation . This is not opinion but fact. If you want it done right and want it to withstand the test of time, this is the way it’s done, no exceptions. A red flag should go up when any contractor is offering bypassing a concrete foundation as a cost saving option. Unfortunately 85% of the top concrete contractors contractors out there will tell you they can lay the stone right on top of compacted granite or base material. This type of contractor is exactly who you want to avoid. While what they are recommending to you gives the appearance of a patio, it won’t withstand the climate, erosion and soil movement beneath the patio in TEXAS .
BEWARE OF CONCRETE CONTRACTOR SCAMS
You might get a few crackless years at best, until it begins to fall apart. This method is the most recommended scam or shortcut of trying to lower pricing and still get the job. Notice the price came down because the concrete footing was removed from the job cost. This option of ” no concrete necessary” is most often offered to those with strict financial limitations. The contractors offering this solution don’t care about your patio or home, they just want your money.With no concrete foundation you get a type of patio, but it’s really just a veneer laid on the ground.
How much concrete do i need?
A concrete patio or sidewalk slab or footing should be a minimum of 4 inches thick. This is sometimes reduced to around 3 1/2 inches due to preexisting structural limitations for top concrete contractors in TEXAS . If you encounter space limitations, you really do need a good masonry contractor to resolve the issues with other options. this leads us to our next step.
The 2nd step is hire a knowledgeable masonry contractor in TEXAS . Do a little research before you start getting pricing. Most good masonry contractors will be able to talk concrete chemistry and technology with you. Yes, I said technology. In the last 10 years there have been some really cool advances in concrete additives and mixes. These advances have provided solutions for the problems and limitations of old. A true patio or masonry professional will be able to talk shop with you, it’s his livelihood. A contractor who can’t do this or doesn’t seem comfortable is more than likely a novice at best. This should be the other red flag that goes up. Basically, Concrete slabs and mortar are like a cake mix. Correctly mixing the ingredients and correctly letting the slab or masonry product cure, are the factors that determine a good solid installation. Again, Talk with your contractor and Make sure he’s knowledgeable about the chemistry, additives and curing process of concrete & masonry. If he is this will ensure the likelihood of a great patio. 3rd step and last but definitely not least, Check references, check reviews and ask to see work they’ve done. Really check this stuff out and try to look at at least 1 job they have done. Ask point blank if the previous client is related to the contractor. Any resistance or confusion in this process would be red flag number
3.So, in order from 1 to 3. All masonry installations need a concrete footing. Make sure your patio contractor is knowledgeable about masonry chemistry, additives and enhancing solutions. Check references, reviews and stay away from the dirt cheap deals of a lifetime from any concrete contractor in TEXAS .If you get even 1 red flag, get another contractor. There are enough guys out there that do know what they’re doing.
Concrete: Its Types and Uses
The type of concrete that you order can be the difference between having a successful project or ending up with something that you will be tearing out in the future. If you're building a concrete patio, and it's going to be built In expansive soil, you might think about using a stronger concrete mix.
The concrete strength will usually be determined by the amount of cement that will be used, water, sand and rock. The size of the rock and the type of cement will also play an important role in the strength of the concrete.
A typical concrete strength that can be used for almost any project, will be around 2500 psi and we need to pay attention to these numbers as they get larger. The mixtures strength usually goes in 500 PSI increments and these increments are usually increased by adding more cement or larger rock, for each cubic yards of concrete.
In other words, a 2500 PSI standard concrete mix usually has 5 - 90 pounds sacks of cement, where a 3500 PSI mix, wIll have 6 - 90 pounds sacks of cement in it. This will also depend on the rock size that will be used, to create the specific concrete mix.
The size of the rock, will also help in determining, how strong the concrete will actually be. Let me give you an example: the smaller the rock, the more cement that will be required to create the same amount of structural strength, per cubic yard.
With all that said, if you're just pouring a sidewalk or a driveway, you can contact your local concrete supplying company for a recommendation. I have been doing this for years and they haven't let me down yet. Usually the concrete companies have plenty of experience and know exactly what kind of concrete mixture you need for your area and project. If your neighbors have large cracks in their concrete driveway, you might want to hire a professional, to get some advice. Large cracks might mean there are problems with your soil and will require additional construction methods.
Concrete: Its Types and Uses
Many people use their garage to store anything that they can’t or would rather not have in their living space. With valuable space at a premium, people are often forced to keep their lawn mower, gardening implements, tools, sports materials, bicycles and seasonal items in their garage. If you have room in your garage for anything but your car, then it might be time to invest in quality garage storage solutions.
Step into your garage and what do you see? Maybe some unopened boxes from when you moved in a few years ago. You have no idea what’s inside them but you also don’t want to throw them away. You see your old golf clubs, musty and covered in cobwebs. You try to remember the last time you played golf but it escapes you. You move around some boxes to make space and you find the bikes your children have outgrown, and toys they no longer play with. You remember your youngest is going to uni in a couple of months. But where’s your car? Oh, right, it’s parked out in the street.
Quality storage can help give your garage some much-needed organisation. Some would say, “Garages are meant to be messy.” Anybody who has said that has never had the benefit of a tidy garage. Organising your garage can help reduce the clutter, make finding and storing things easier and more convenient, and most importantly, free up space. Getting the most out of your garage space is the goal, and to do so you must plan carefully what to store, how to store it, and where it should be placed. Here are a few tips and pointers for taking your garage back.
What to keep in your garage
Even if you’ve invested in expensive home security cameras and alarms, your garage is rarely as secure as the rest of your home. Garage doors and windows are most likely to be left unlocked or open. If you’re storing items of value in your garage or thinking of doing it, It is important that you take measures to secure the space to prevent unauthorised access and theft.
The conditions in the garage are also sure to be different from the rest of your home. Garages are seldom climate-controlled, and you will need to modify the room before storing items that are sensitive to temperature and humidity. However, garages are excellent spaces for storing non-perishable food so you better take advantage of bulk discounts at your supermarket.
Measuring the garage
When taking measurements for anything, be sure to measure twice and do it once more to be 100% certain. Getting the wrong measurements could cost you a lot of time, effort and money. Be sure to get the accurate width, length and height of the area where you want to add storage. Double-check if the walls are at an exact right angle.
When planning the layout, take into consideration the locations of plumbing and wiring as the storage solutions may impede access to these. You don’t want to tear down your cabinets just so the plumber can inspect a pipe that may or may not be leaky.
Lastly, when thinking about the space you need, volume almost always beats area. Storage with a small footprint but wide clearance is always better than one with a wide area but low clearance.
Storage cabinets are the most common storage solution for garages. Many people find them to be the best option, as they can be used to store practically anything. Storage cabinets typically fall under three categories: base cabinets, wall cabinets and utility storage.
If you want to maximise your storage without using floor space, then mounted wall cabinets are your option. If not set too high, mounted wall cabinets allow for immediate access to storage without taking up space on the floor. Wall mounted cabinets can be either horizontal (wide footprint, low clearance), or vertical (narrow footprint, high clearance).
For freestanding storage, you can always go for a utility storage cabinet. Perfect for small lawn care items, gardening supplies and other accessories, utility storage cabinets can comfortably fit long, narrow items, and can include partitions and interior shelving.
Base cabinets are similar to modular kitchen counters, and are a cheaper alternative to inbuilt cabinets. A standard base cabinet has two or three drawers, or a combination of drawers and shelves. They can also include features like key locks, countertops and rubber edges for protection.
If you own bicycles, sports equipment or gardening tools like spades and rakes, storage racks are a must-have for your garage. Storage racks allow easy access to commonly-used objects while keeping clutter and accidents to a minimum. It can be either wall-mounted or freestanding.
You can have a dedicated storage rack for your sports equipment, one for gardening and another one for general hardware. These racks can feature protective mesh, utility trays or side hooks.
Ceiling mounted racks are useful for seasonal or rarely used items. They utilize ceiling space instead of wall or floor space, so the positioning of lights in the garage should be taken into account. Ceiling mounted racks are only recommended if space is limited.
Clearing your garage and organising its contents and layout takes practice and planning. Check your garage needs and wants so you can optimise the space to its fullest extent. But adding in racks and cabinets is half the work— you have to strive to keep your garage clean and free of pests. Your garage may be better organised now, but it’s barely better than your old one if it’s infested with rats and cockroaches.