If you're thinking of having concrete poured on any surface of your property, and have decided to do this job yourself, you need to ensure you know everything involved in the process and are properly prepared. Pouring concrete is not as easy as you might think, and failing to install it properly can mean a surface that buckles and cracks easily or which outright sinks into the ground. Note a few concrete pouring mistakes to avoid at your home if you're thinking about managing this installation yourself.
Not properly clearing and grading the area
The area that will hold concrete should be cleared completely and then graded so that it's level and even; residential driveways may also be graded so they slope toward the street to allow for proper water runoff. This grading also makes the ground more compact, so it can better hold the weight of concrete without allowing it to sink. Even if you're pouring concrete in a footprint left by old concrete, you still need to ensure the area is properly graded and cleared of any vegetation that might grow through the concrete and cause cracks before work begins.
Not properly setting forms
When concrete is poured, even if it's very thick, you don't simply pour it onto an area and then let it dry; forms are used to keep the concrete in place so it doesn't run off and so you can pour it as thick as necessary. Those forms can be made of wood, metal or plastic and need to be thick enough to hold the weight of concrete and placed deep enough in the ground that they stay firm and upright while the concrete is drying. Without proper forms, your concrete surface will be uneven, and you may not be able to pour the concrete as thick as needed to withstand the weight of a vehicle running over it.
Not getting a mixer and pump
If you're only pouring a very small area of concrete, you may be able mix the material in a wheelbarrow and shovel it out by hand, but consider the weight of concrete before deciding this, as it may be more physically difficult than you realize. Also, note that you need to keep the concrete moving and mixing before it's set, so it doesn't dry in the wheelbarrow while you work. Many homeowners try to forego a mixing truck and pump in order to save money on the installation, but this can mean wasted concrete that dries before it's installed and much more heavy labour than expected.
If, after reading this piece, you are not confident in your ability to pour concrete on your own, contact a company like Hunter Concrete Pump Hire to do it for you.