Polyurethane VS Mudjacking (Foam to Cement)

Concrete can sink like the Titanic – hit by a metaphorical iceberg dubbed settlement. This can goof up sidewalkdriveways, and pool patios. Before you cry never let me go Jack, don’t worry. There’s a way to jack that concrete back up, so to speak.

It is imperative to address awkwardly sunken concrete flatwork to eliminate trip hazards and consequential lawsuits.

The two primary options in the lift biz are mudjacking and polyurethane lifting.

So, you probably want to know what the primary difference is in terms of performance. Well, let’s dive into it.

Mudjacking

The term mudjacking is old – as old as cocaine in Coca-Cola and medicinally prescribed cigarettes and probably just as helpful. Snake oil doesn’t cure malaria and tying weights to your ankles doesn’t help you float.

Mud is a colloquial and industry specific term for concrete. Therefore, mudjacking consists of drilling a 2-inch hole (about the size of a baseball) through the concrete slab. Once the hole has been drilled, the concrete mud is mixed in a hopper (typically attached to a large dump truck).

Once the material is mixed, it is then pumped through a large hose into the hole. The material is pumped at a high rate until the slab is lifted into the desired position.

This can prove a messy and invasive process. The primary issue with mudjacking is it is simply adding more weight, and a significant amount of weight at that. Weight sinks – that’s just how gravity works.

While mudjacking may seem like a cheap option, it is typically a temporary fix.

Polyurethane

Polyurethane lifting is remarkably similar to mudjacking but with better, more efficient material. The holes that are drilled through the concrete are 5/8” in diameter or about the size of a penny.

The polyurethane material is two separate components that are combined at the nozzle and application site. A hose is then run from the pump (typically on a truck) to the affected area, which requires a lift.

The advantages of the polyurethane lifting procedure far outweigh the mudjacking process. First, for polyurethane injection, the size of the application hole is a fraction of the size of the hole for mudjacking.

The size of the equipment required to drill through for the mudjacking method is a large jackhammer drill (typically gas-powered). The drill for the polyurethane method is a standard electric hammer drill.

Read more: Polyurethane Foam For Home Insulation

Secondly, the next benefit of polyurethane lifting is that the polyurethane foam will not shrink once it is injected. The mud from the mudjacking will eventually shrink and sink once the mud mixture cures.

Finally, the largest benefit of polyurethane lifting vs mudjacking is that polyurethane foam is considerably lighter than mud slurry. Polyurethane is 97% lighter than mud slurry.

1 cubic foot of concrete is about 150 lbs. 

1 cubic foot of polyurethane is 3-4 lbs.

When a slab sinks, the soil has already demonstrated it is not dense enough to hold the weight of a concrete slab.

Mudjacking simply adds more weight on top of that – overloading incompetent non-load bearing soil. That is just asking for the soil below the concrete to sink even more. The expansive soil is the real reason that concrete slabs and houses settle.

It’s typically not the concrete that fails, but the material/soils that the concrete is poured onto.

Polyurethane is light enough and strong enough to float flatwork on non-stable soil.

DALINGHAUS CONSTRUCTION AND POLYURETHANE LIFTING

If you have a concrete slab that is sinking or is uneven, give Dalinghaus Construction a call today.

A sunken slab can be unsightly or a tripping hazard, in addition to not allowing water to drain away from the foundation correctly.

Let us make your slab level! Our polyurethane lifting method allows you to use the slab almost immediately.

With over 100 years of combined experience and 4.9 stars out of 299 reviews – we are here to ensure that you never settle

If you live in SoCal or Arizona and would like a FREE foundation inspection, click the link below –

WRITTEN BY

Brian Dalinghaus

Brian is one of the Co-Founders of Dalinghaus Construction. He has been in the foundation repair industry since 2005. During his career, he has been associated with helping over 4,000 homes and structures throughout California and Arizona.

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