We are in the middle of home renovation. We recently poured a concrete sidewalk to help keep down on the dirt that gets tracked through the house and reduce the worn paths through our yard. We are also landscaping our yard. It cost a lot to have someone pour concrete and it is quite a savings to do it yourself. We saved about $300.00 doing this ourselves. With a few tools and know how; it can be fairly easy to do. We are not professionals, we are just home owners trying to save money by doing it ourselves. You will need basic knowledge of construction, concrete, and experience on how to use tools and safety precautions to do this instructable. Follow through to see how we did it!

Disclaimer: If you use this instructable as a guide to pour concrete or anything else ; We are not professionals, you do so at your own risk. Please take the necessary precautions to keep tools, cement, boards, and everything mentioned here out of the reach of anyone who may injure themselves. Protect areas you are working in, mark them with red flags so no injuries will result from accidents. Read all instructions on cement packages to inform yourself of all risks and warnings. Tools can injure, hurt, and resulting in loss of life, accidents happen.Thanks.

Step 1: Remodeling

This instructable was hard for me to share because everything is in such a mess. I set aside my reservations because I wanted to share this information with this community. We are in the middle of many projects. We are pouring concrete, building a shop, landscaping, re-roofing, replacing windows, plumbing, and painting the exterior of the house to list a few.

Then there is the inside; kitchen and bath! I will be sharing as we finish each job here on instructables. Most people would start on the inside but we have a large yard and a small house so we needed a shop to store everything and a place to work and keep tools and materials protected.

The concrete is almost all finished except for the driveway. That will be the last thing we do. For this instructable I will be sharing how we poured a section of sidewalk to finish the concrete for the back yard. We hope to finish the shop and plant the lawn very soon. I mention this to you because if you will be doing any of these things, you might keep an eye open for my new instructables as I share them here.

now, it looks like your paths are not being used as primary entry paths so i don't think my comments really apply. and obviously your kind of done so it's a little late in the game to change. :) These comments aren't really directed at you and are in no way a criticism of your project. these are for people in the early stages. <br> <br>I live in Cleveland which is a colder climate and we get a lot of rainfall so freeze/thaw and drainage are major factors. Now I should also say that I'm an architect and by definition lazy. I put stuff on paper and have others do all the work :) <br> <br>add a 4&quot; layer of gravel below the sidewalk. this as a drainage plain so that subsurface water will drain away from the sidewalk and there it is less likely to heaving. if you are also incorporating paving like bricks then I will add a 4&quot; layer of sand on the gravel. <br> <br>instead of using 2x for formwork use siding boards and wooden stakes. siding boards are flexible and can be straight or easily bent to make nice smooth curves. <br> <br>4&quot; minimum depth and add reinforcing mesh, usually 6x6 w1.4/w1.4. as you pour hold the mesh in the middle of the slab. <br> <br>add expansion strips whenever butting up against existing paving or foundation. <br> <br>slope the sidewalk to one side for drainage. this is simply done by setting one side of the formwork a lower than the other side. <br> <br>as a general rule i use 3'-6&quot; minimum (preferably 4') for walks because unfortunately down the road someone may be in a wheel chair, so it's good to make things wheel chair width. a wheel chair can fit on a 3' wide walkway but it's good to give a little breathing room on either side to keep from rolling off the edge. <br> <br>add 2&quot; pvc pipes (1' wider than walk) under the sidewalk at logical locations for future sprinkler lines and wiring for outdoor lighting. cap the ends of the pipes but don't glue it so that the pvc won't get clogged with dirt. when you pour the walk, add marks in the concrete so you can easily locate the pipes down the road. <br> <br> <br>
Thank you for taking the time to post this comment. I am featuring it because you commented on some important things to consider. We live in the south west and do not have the problems you mention here. Rain would be totally welcomed! You are not lazy in my opinion as you took the time to write this information for my readers. Hats off to you! Thank you again and I do hope you have a splendorous day! <br>Sunshiine
Well done. Very comprehensive instructions. But if I may be so bold. Speaking from experience, this process would be a hell of a lot easier with the use of a cement/concrete mixer. If you don't own one you can hire one. I don't know what prices are like in the States, but in Australia you can hire one for around $60-80 a day. It would save a lot of time and back ache. Failing that, you can use a wheelbarrow and mix manually with a Larry-Hoe. It's basically a garden hoe with two holes in it. Takes a bit longer, but still much easier than by hand. <br/><br/>Otherwise. Well done.
Congratulations on first place!! Sorry I'm so late, but with school I'm lucky to even look at instructables, much less post or reply! <br>
My daughter will be going back top school very soon! I went to see her and help her get organized so school would be easier. She is a happy girl. Glad to hear your in school.
Thanks! My husband is excited about it. I have been on vacation so did not use the pc while I was gone. Hope your doing great! <br>Sunshiine
YAY and Congratulations on a <strong>well-deserved WIN</strong>!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ;-D
Gee thanks! My hubby was excited that we won! He helped me a lot on this instructable. I am still dazed and amazed! Thanks for the congrats! Sunshiine
What can I say? YOU ARE AWESOME! Congratulations Sunshiine!! Well deserved!!!! :-)
Thanks so much! I am excited! Hope you day shines! <br>Sunshiine
SUPER project... Congrats on being a Finalist!!! <br> <br>Best of Luck, girl!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Thanks and thanks again! It is so nice to have this walkway! It made a big difference! Hope your weekend is fantastic! <br>Sunshiine
That is quite the undertaking! Wonderful job Sunshiine!
Thanks Penolopy! The rewards are paying off! Thanks for commenting! I love your hat! <br>Sunshiine
One of the pictures looks like concrete under a chain-link fence? I would love to do something similar as I cannot keep brush from growing up through it. I have a lot of fence line though. Was that just a dig and pour project to get even with the ground or did you use a form? Also what do you do if someday the fence rusts out? Just tear out the concrete with the fence or something else? I would love to see an instructable specific to this or if there is one can you give a link? Also very nice instructable, I love the detail you give.
Do you have a picture you can share? It is difficult to answer this question not knowing the circumstances. Brush can be a real problem for any fence. The only thing I can think of is trimming back the brush or removing the brush, which is a big job. I would think if you have a very large area using some type of equipment to bull doze a path along the fence and lay down fabric blocker would be a cheaper easier way. One can use brush killer but then you will be using a chemical. The fence won't stop the brush from growing through it. We used forms. The fence post are set in concrete. The fence post will last 40 to 50 years in our area because we live in the Southwest. The advantage of pouring in sections is you only have to remove a section of concrete and it will come out much easier than if it was poured in one pour. Also It will look better because the edges that connect will be smooth when replaced. If you plan to replace your fence, a cheaper alternative would be railroad ties. It would also be easier. Here are some pictures of what we did in other areas of the yard. I hope this helps. We are building a fence for the front yard sometime this winter. I am not sure when though. It probably won't be chain link. Chain link is a very good fence that will outlast many types of fences but it is not all that attractive.&nbsp;<a href="http://www.noble.org/ag/soils/fencelines/" rel="nofollow">http://www.noble.org/ag/soils/fencelines/</a><br> <br> <br> <br> <br> <br>
Here is another link I tried to include:<a href="http://www.gvbrush.com/" rel="nofollow">http://www.gvbrush.com/</a><br> <br>
I have tried to answer your question 3 times. My server is giving me trouble. I will answer as soon as I get it fixed and I can upload a picture to share. Thanks <br>Sunshiine
Great job! You have my vote! :-)
Thanks! I voted for you also! Yours is better though!
Thanks! :-)
Sunshiine - this is a great write up! Thanks so much for entering this in the challenge. Seriously, nice job.
Wow noahw! Thanks! My husband really helped me with the write up. I am so happy he took the time because he stays so tired all the time. Hope your day shines! <br>sunshiine
Detailed writeup, nice work. Pouring concrete seems so simple but there's so much going on when you're working with it. Nice job, and the results look great. <br />(also, your pictures are fantastic)
Wow! I really appreciate your comment Mike! Thanks for the compliment, I am getting better pictures but these were taken outside which is much better. Most of my instructables are inside with bad lighting which I hope to correct. Hope your day shines! <br>Sunshiine
pretty good. here in Brazil this type of pavement is very common. <br>and in step 11 you'd better use a trowel than hands
I will go back and change that. My hubby wears gloves but you are correct I should change that. Thanks! Hope your day shiines! <br>Sunshiine
What's a sidewalk? Nice path. ;)
It could be called a concrete pavement. What do they call a concrete path in your country?
Thanks for catching that! I am on the correct path now! Hope your path shines! <br>Sunshiine

About This Instructable




Bio: I am married with two children. Spring, summer, and fall are my very favorite times of the year. I love the sunshine thus the reason ... More »
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