Pouring concrete — especially concrete slabs like a concrete patio — are harder than you think! Even the smallest mistake can ruin your project, and you may end up spending more money on the project than if you’d hired a professional like A-1 Concrete Leveling and Foundation Repair in Nashville in the first place.

If you’re dead set on pouring your own concrete, then this blog post is for you! We’re covering common concrete mistakes that amateurs make, and hopefully you’ll learn how to avoid these pitfalls. If you’re reconsidering your DIY project and want to leave concrete pouring to the concrete pouring and concrete leveling pros, then contact A-1 Concrete Leveling and Foundation Repair in Nashville today.

Lack of Preparation

Preparing the site is vital to ensuring a good slab. Preparation requires extensive work, and your site needs to be perfectly level and well compacted if you want an even surface. If you have sandy soil, you’ll need to remove the sod and topsoil. If you have clay or loam soil, an additional 6-8 inches of gravel needs to be laid under any concrete that you pour. If you don’t lay enough gravel, your concrete may settle, causing cracks. If you do have cracks in your concrete, you may be able to fix them with concrete floor leveling. 

Mixing Errors

Your concrete will be useless if your mix is wrong. More so, not all projects require the same type of concrete and the ratio of elements in the mix, particularly the amount of water, is vital to how well the concrete will cure. You’ll also need to think about quantity. Mixing too little concrete will compromise your slab, while too much will end up costing you money. The best way to get the right mix and the right amount of concrete is by using a volumetric concrete mixer.


Very hot and cold weather affects how your concrete slab will set, and rain can ruin the project altogether. Make sure you check the weather ahead of time and have a tarp ready to cover the project if a Nashville storm rolls through unexpectedly. 

Forgetting Finishing Work

Finishing the concrete is vital to the integrity of your slab! Concrete needs to be screeded, edged, and floated if you want a high-quality result. Without this work, your concrete will be rough and uneven. More so, air bubbles can end up in the concrete, which will make your concrete more likely to crack and need concrete floor leveling down the road.

Premature Form Removal

It’s tempting to remove the forms holding your concrete in place before it’s entirely finished curing — you want to finish the job and see the product of your labor! Removing the forms too early, though, can undo all of your hard work. So be sure to wait at least 48hrs before you remove them.

Curing is vital to the strength and durability of concrete, and if you use your slab or remove your forms too early, the concrete will not reach its full durability. Properly cured concrete has the right amount of strength and stability to resist temperature changes, abrasion, and heavy loads.

Expert Concrete Contractors – Nashville

While you can go down to your local hardware store and pick up a few bags of concrete, it’s probably not the best way to get the patio you’ve envisioned! We hope that reading this blog helped you better understand the challenges of pouring your own concrete, and that you’ll trust our experienced concrete contractors for your next job.

If you already have a concrete driveway, patio, or other concrete slab and have cracks or other issues, the team at A-1 Concrete Leveling and Foundation Repair in Nashville can help. Contact us for concrete leveling today. 

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