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Step One: Breaking Up a Sidewalk Starts With Getting the Right Tools

The first video in this four-part series details the tools needed for breaking up a sidewalk along with step-by-step instructions for removing the sidewalk.

Hi, I'm Pat Caparicio with Homeownernet.com. I'm going to show you how to replace a section of sidewalk about 12' long and 3' wide. We're going to tear it up, create the forms, put in expansion joints, pour new concrete, smooth the concrete, and cut some seams. Replacing a sidewalk requires a healthy heart and back, so if you have those, let's get started.

Bring these to the work site:

  • Rake
  • Regular hammer
  • Large and small sledge hammers
  • Pointed shovel
  • Level
  • Pick
  • Wheelbarrow
  • Dumpster
Removing a Sidewalk

Now for removing the old sidewalk, here is your day's work:

  1. Using the larger sledge hammer, strike the existing surface or joints to create many cracks. Hit existing joints or cracks first, so they can fracture further.
  2. Using either the shovel or the pick, put the point of the tool under the loosened edges to pry them up.
  3. Deposit the broken chunks in the wheelbarrow to take to your dumpster. Dispose of the rubble legally--don't dump it on vacant land.

Now that the old sidewalk is history, the next step, and the next video, will demonstrate how to prepare the soil for replacing a sidewalk.

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