The weather takes it toll on everything, including the steps leading up to your house. Cycles of rain followed by sun and heat followed by cold can have unseen effects on your steps. Winter weather may cause the worst damage, though. Winter sun will melt snow and ice, which will find cracks and crevices in your masonry steps — or even in concrete — which will then freeze and expand. Over time this will lead to larger cracks in your steps, sections that crumble away or even pieces that break off!
The salt or ice melt that we use to prevent slips and falls can actually worsen the situation. Not only does it speed up the melting and refreezing process, it can also introduce chemicals that break down the bonds in mortar and concrete.
Don’t worry though, there’s a simple solution that will protect your steps from bad weather and harsh chemicals. Waterproofing your steps.
At Ray Arnold Masonry & General Contracting, we’ve been in the masonry business for almost 70 years. We’ve built steps, repaired them and even replaced them. We have seen what winter weather and precipitation can do to unprotected steps, and that’s why we recommend waterproofing yours.
Simply put, most people believe that masonry and concrete are waterproof, but that’s not really the case. While uncracked concrete will keep out most water, eventually moisture will make its way into microscopic openings, enlarging them over time. In the case of brick and mortar, it may surprise you to learn that they will actually absorb a fair amount of water into tiny openings, and water will also pass through cracks that occur between the bricks and mortar.
All rain in North America is slightly acidic, and will slowly dissolve mortar and concrete over time. To protect your steps and extend their life, you should have them waterproofed with Siloxane P.D. which prevents water from penetrating into the masonry or concrete, and will keep the salt out of your steps. Unlike other sealants, this won’t trap moisture — instead, it will allow it to breathe without letting any new water in.
Ready to get your steps ready for winter? Protecting them from the elements is your best bet for prolonging their life. If you would like more information, or would like to schedule an appointment for a quote, call the experts at Ray Arnold Masonry at 440-834-8252 or reach out using our contact form.