How to Install a Concrete Slab for a Garage

Written by cleveland van cecil
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How to Install a Concrete Slab for a Garage
Pouring a concrete slab properly with rebar will prevent cracks from forming. (concrete image by Empath from

It is many a homeowner's dream to have the grand garage for woodworking and parking the old '79 Ford Mustang. A good garage starts with a well built concrete slab. Concrete is an aggregate material made of Portland cement, crushed rocks, water and chemicals. Concrete is a strong material that, when laid on a level surface with metal rebar set inside to reinforce the surface, will last several years with only a small amount of maintenance.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • 2-by-4 lumber
  • Shovel
  • Tamper
  • String
  • Carpenters square
  • Wire mesh
  • Twist tie
  • Pliers
  • Concrete
  • Rubber sledgehammer
  • Trowel
  • Bull float

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  1. 1

    Measure out the area for the concrete slab and remove all the vegetation, rocks and other debris. Tamp down the soil so that it is hard and smooth by pressing down a tamper device.

  2. 2

    Place 2-by-4 forms along the edges of the measured area to create the corners of the concrete slab. Make a trench that is one shovel wide and 6 inches deep. Place a string line along the edges of the boards to create and "X" over the entire area to ensure the edges are square. Use a carpenter square at the corner to double check.

  3. 3

    Place wire meshing along the bottom of the slab area to provide extra grip for the concrete. Wire together large pieces of the mesh by twisting tie wire using pliers.

  4. 4

    Mix the concrete according to the instructions on the concrete packaging labels.

  5. 5

    Pour the concrete into the forms using a concrete pourer, pouring directly into one end of the form. Use a shovel to push the concrete along the entire slab area.

  6. 6

    Level the concrete along the slab area using a 2-by-4, making sure it is even all along the slab. Hit the corners of the frame with a sledgehammer to blow out any air pockets in the slab.

  7. 7

    Run a bull float along the length of the slab, lifting at the end of the slab and bringing the bull float to the starting position. Float along the entire slab area to make the surface smooth.

  8. 8

    Allow the concrete slab to cure and the water on the top to dry before applying any stains.

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