How to Pour a Leveling Layer of Concrete Over the Existing Uneven Old Concrete Floor

Hunker may earn compensation through affiliate links in this story.

Things You'll Need

  • Chalk line

  • Shovel

  • Wood form boards

  • Nails

  • Hammer

  • Concrete etching acid

  • Shop broom

  • Hose

  • Wire brush

  • Concrete mixer

  • Cement

  • Aggregate

  • Sand

  • Rake

  • Straight-edge

  • Float

  • Burlap

A new layer of concrete over an old floor repairs small cracks and levels the surface.

You can level an existing concrete floor with a leveling layer of new concrete, but you must prepare the old concrete floor first. Neglecting to prepare the old surface will prevent the new concrete from adhering correctly, resulting in a weak bond between the two layers. When done correctly, a leveling layer of concrete increases the longevity and strength of an old concrete floor.


Video of the Day

Step 1

Mark the intended height for the new concrete. If you're working inside, snap a chalk line around the walls. If you're working outside, dig a trench around the perimeter of the floor 4 inches deep. Place wood form boards on their sides in the trench and nail them together at the ends. The surface of the new concrete will be level with the top of the form boards. For instance, if you're raising the level 2 inches, use 2-by-6 inch form boards.

Step 2

Pour concrete etching acid over the surface and spread it with a shop broom. Scrub the acid into the floor, and wait half an hour before rinsing it off with a hose.


Step 3

Go over the surface with a wire brush to rough it up to help the new concrete adhere to the old. Water the old concrete to prevent it from absorbing moisture from the new concrete.

Step 4

Prepare enough concrete to pour a 1- to 2-inch layer over the old floor. In a concrete mixer, add cement, aggregate, sand and water as directed on the concrete package instructions.

Step 5

Pour the concrete over the old floor and spread it over the surface with a rake. Continue pouring the concrete until you reach the height of the chalk line or the top of the form boards.


Step 6

Settle the concrete with a clean straight-edge long enough to drag across the surface. Smooth the surface with a float beginning with the first section of poured concrete and working across. Stop manipulating the concrete once water begins to appear on the surface.

Step 7

Cover the floor with moist burlap and allow it to dry for four days, keeping the burlap moist so the floor cures slowly.


references & resources

Aurora LaJambre

Aurora LaJambre is a writer and editor living in Brooklyn, N.Y. For over five years she's covered topics in culture, lifestyle, travel, DIY design and green living for print and online media. Her publication credits include "WOW Women on Writing," "Six States" and She graduated from New York University in 2003 with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in creative writing.