Main content
Search

Charlie Albone

Landscaping Expert

» Ask An Expert

Concrete steps falling apart 

Hi Charlie (I call you "the miracle man" after seeing some of the transformations you do on SHA) (my favourite Lifestyle program). My house was built in 1979 and has two flights of concrete steps at the front. There are ten steps in each flight, and they are about 7 feet wide. A neighbour said they had been constructed by the previous owners by using railway sleepers and reinforcing mesh - covered with about an inch or two of concrete. They are now sagging in places with a couple of large cracks where the front edge is going to fall off eventually.

I was advised by one person to fill the holes and cracks with concrete as best I can - plus apply a layer of new concrete over the top and front face of each step. Another suggestion was to fill cracks and hollows then pave with bullnose pavers. What do you think? Any suggestions which are not going to cost thousands? I am not a young woman any more, am widowed, and have no family to help. Thanks (in anticipation of a miracle).

Answered Saturday 24 August 2013

If they have been built as you mentioned then I recommend removing them as soon as possible for safety - especially if they are sagging and cracking.  Sadly this isn't going to be a cheap exercise but perhaps you can rebuild only one flight of stairs, and make it a lot narrower to keep the cost down.  A carpenter will be able to build you a set of steps relatively cheaply out of treated pine but you are still looking at having to spend $4-6,000.00 depending on the detail in the handrail and site conditions.  Sorry I can't bring any good news!

Landscaping Expert

Charlie Albone

Charlie Albone has been designing gardens for 12 years and is an expert on planting and landscaping.

» More Questions & Answers

Garden design and plant choice 

I would look on the www.aildm.com.au for a local designer and start with layout over plants ... Read more

Front hedge 

I'd go for Murraya as it grows quick and can be kept to almost any height up to 4 meters tall ... Read more

Landscaping a 500sqm block! Where do I start? 

I would love to - little bit of a commute though!  Look on www.aildm.com.au for a local landscape designer to help you get started.   ... Read more

Garden apps 

I don't know of any design apps i'm afraid - and thanks for watching next wednesday! ... Read more

Bromeliads in wire boxes. 

The episode you saw was 8 years old and now green wall systems have come a long way since then- look at the Skale greenwall system. ... Read more

Garden Pots 

The issue with plastic pots is you wont be able to get them in the size required to keep the citrus trees roots cool.  The bigger the pot the bigger the amount of soil and the cooler the soil... Read more

Painting a wooden front fence 

Every paint has  different coverage rates but if you multiply the height by the length you will get the amount of square meters you need to cover - Check this amount off the coverage rate on t... Read more

New paving and pool fence 

Well none of them are very nice!  I would select a stone that suits the style you are trying to achieve.  For a modern look go for a large format sleek textured paver and for a more rusti... Read more

Plant selection for gRden bed 

My formula for selecting plants is to choose the right plants to suit the soil, aspect, style and amount of maintenance they will receive.  This will limit my plant palette and then I sel... Read more

paving paint  

It does work and is great but will require excellent preparation and constant maintenance to ensure it looks great long term ... Read more

 
 

Sign Out

Join the Conversation

Please note, LifeStyle cannot respond to all comments posted in our comments feed. If you have a comment or query you would like LifeStyle to respond to, please use our feedback form.

1 comment
Please login to comment
Posted by PardelopeReport
Thanks Charlie - you confirmed my opinion. I will have to start saving my pennies.