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Question DetailsAsked on 7/26/2016

how to make a pad going into the garage not so steep

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Well - assuming you are not going to raise or lower the concrete slab in the garage, and not going to regrade and redo the drive and ramp both to change approach slope, only one way - push the ramp intercept point at the driveway further out from the garage, assuming the drive coming in does not slope up or down to the ramp at a steeper angle than the ramp itself.

If drive is so steep (up or down) approaching the garage that you cannot lengthen out the ramp to intercept it further away from the garage (i.e. new start of ramp would be in free air due to steep upsloping approach drive, or would be below ground due to steep down-sloping drive, then changing the approach of the driveway coming up to the garage is the only solution - by changing slope further back on the drive to make it more gently nearer the garage to intersect correctly to provide a gentler ramp, or by lengthening the drive to give a lower grade or bringing it in another way to provide a flat or flatter apron in front of the garage. For that sort of job, unless a minor change (which a Driveway Contractor could do), redesigning the drive approach to suit would be work for a Civil Engineering firm that does residential site development work. If changing where it comes off the street tht usually requires a new "curb cut" permit, if building department and street/highway department will even let you put a new entrance where you want it, due to limitations on distance from property line, intersections, bus stops, fire hydrants, etc.

Best, longest-life way is to have a contractor remove existing ramp (assuming concrete) and excavate a ways into the drive also to get the slope flatter, then pour new concrete ramp - typically about $5-7/SF with minimum charge of about $500 by a Concrete or Driveway-Concrete contractor. Or with asphalt ramp and drive, ditto on prep, then put in new asphalt ramp.

Other ways - less neat DIY for asphalt - clean ramp and the drive section you are going to be extending out to well, brush on bonding tack coat (read instructions carefully on amount of drying needed before paving, varies by product from still wet to barely tacky) and pave with asphalt - commercially by Driveway - Asphalt contractor for similar cost to above, or for very small area using bagged asphalt mix from store and compacting yourself with rented plate compactor. Will not stick as well as replacing the ramp, so life maybe 5-10 years if done right versus decades before it starts breaking away.

For concrete DIY- bonding will not be as good and will tend to break up at thin feathered edges, but you can roughen the ramp and driveway section (assuming concrete) with a bush hammer or impact hammer, wash well, then put on an epoxy modified topping concrete bagged mix per instructions - different mixes depending on thickness going on, and better to not feather out at leading edge - leave 1/4 - 1/2" thick or more minimum thickness (or cut into intersection point to provide a recdess for it) to avoid breakage of thin edge. Cure per instructions with curing compound, or better yet, cover and keep wet for 3-7 days per bag instructions.

When doing this, pay attention to headroom - you do not want to have the ramp raise the elevation at the garage door - might not make a difference for your vehicles but could cause resale issues for a buyer with an SUV or pickup if the clearance to the garage door header beam has been reduced by overlaying the ramp. Means you have to chip away some of the top surface of the end of the ramp at the garage slab intersection to provide thickness for the overlay so it does not come to a feather edge, or live with a feathered-out overlay if not replacing the whole thing, which will normally be the first place that starts crumbling or breaking up - especially with asphalt. There are products to minimize that problem - latex asphalt repair patch which is very fine grained so you don't have the aggregate popping out due to inadequate thickness, though does not look quite the same.

Answered 3 years ago by LCD

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