Everything You Need to Know About Mudjacking

Marwa Hasan
Written by Marwa Hasan
Updated November 5, 2021
Small blue house with nice concrete driveway
marls - stock.adobe.com

Mudjacking offers a quick solution to fix hard surfaces around your home

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Tired of looking at that unsightly crack in your driveway every time you drive past it? If your concrete sidewalk is cracked or your asphalt driveway is starting to settle, you may think there is no other option but to replace the faulty area. 

However, in most cases, mudjacking is the most cost-effective solution to fix settling or cracks in your concrete. Let’s take a look at how mudjacking works, plus the pros and cons of hiring a mudjacking expert. 

What Is Mudjacking?

Mudjacking is one of the most effective concrete repair methods because it can be completed in just a few hours. You can also DIY mudjacking with the right tools and supplies, to save some money.

Mudjacking is a concrete leveling method to lift asphalt slabs in sidewalks, patios, and driveways. The mudjacking process involves pumping cement slurry—usually a mix of sand, water, and cement—under the slab through a hole to lift it back up to its original height. This specialized process should be completed by a mudjacking and concrete leveling professional.

How Does Mudjacking Work?

The mudjacking process consists of the following steps:

Step 1: Drilling the Holes

The first step is to drill several holes in the slab. The pro will drill approximately 1-⅝ inch holes in the slab, four to six feet apart. The number of holes depends on the extent of the damage in the slab. 

Step 2: Pumping the Mixture Through the Holes

Next, the contractor pumps a mixture of cement slurry through the hole, spreading it beneath the slab. Then, the slab is stabilized and raised to its original height. 

Step 3: Caulking Holes and Joints

Once the repair is complete, the holes are cleaned out, caulked, and left to cure. In 24 hours, the slab will be completely cured and ready for use again.

How Much Does Mudjacking Cost?

Mudjacking is considered one of the most affordable techniques to repair concrete or asphalt compared to other methods. Mudjacking will cost almost a third to half the price of other traditional repairs or replacements.

Expect to pay between $570 and $1,500 for the average mudjacking job. However, the extent of the damage will affect the final price. That's why we recommend repairing any concrete or asphalt damage quickly to avoid a hefty price tag.

What Should I Expect After Mudjacking?

The smooth results of mudjacking can last for many years, even decades. It should not settle or deteriorate over time. 

However, if the soil underneath the slab is not 100% compact, cracking may happen again. If it does, the slabs can be lifted back into place using the same method. Check with your contractor about whether they offer a warranty.

What Are the Pros and Cons of Mudjacking?

Concrete patio in shady backyard of home
Andrew - stock.adobe.com

Although mudjacking can be a great solution for your concrete and asphalt problems, it also has some drawbacks. If you’re considering mudjacking, it’s essential to learn its pros and cons in order to make an educated decision. 

Pros of Mudjacking

  • Cost-effective: Mudjacking is relatively inexpensive when compared to other ways of replacing concrete slabs, which require heavy and expensive equipment and plenty of labor hours.

  • Durable: Mudjacking is a permanent fix. The injected slurry won’t absorb water or expand, which means you shouldn’t have to worry about sinking slabs in the future.

  • Versatile: Mudjacking can fix a variety of cracked and uneven surfaces, plus it can also be done at any time of the year, regardless of the weather conditions.

  • A quick repair: This technique is fast compared to other options—where contractors usually have to break up the concrete before replacing it. Generally, you can use the surface the day after the repair, instead of waiting weeks for the freshly poured surface to dry.

  • Sustainable materials: The slurry injected under the concrete uses a sustainable mix of water, sand, and cement.

Cons of Mudjacking

  • Possible cracking: If the job isn’t completed properly, then cracking could occur. An experienced contractor will use the proper thickness of slurry, which will reduce the chance of breaking the slab.

  • Not suitable for shifting soils: If the ground is shifting to the point that it can’t support a slab, adding heavy cement won’t solve the problem. In this case, we recommend polyurethane foam injection instead of cement to raise sunken slabs.

  • Doesn’t fix a damaged slab: Mudjacking won’t help for a severely damaged slab. In this case, replacing the slab will be a better option.

  • Could compromise the structural integrity: A professional contractor will assess the situation, but in some cases, if the damage is too close to the house, mudjacking could negatively impact the house’s structure.

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