Industry Standards Created and Implemented by Curb Creations, Inc.
Concrete landscape edging is an integral part of your landscaping and should be done right the first time. Curb Creations has created the “CODE OF STANDARDS” for our industry. These are key standards necessary in producing a distinctive, creatively sculptured, durable concrete border. Make sure your contractor has adopted these standards. Do not compromise the quality of your decorative concrete edging with an inexperienced or sub-standard company.
15 years minimum, preferably 20 years+. Full time, not part time. Minimum 80,000 feet per year. Ask for company photos, not franchise photos, installation addresses, and referrals. All work should be completed by the company you signed with. Never accept subcontractor work.
Trench should be a 1 1/2-inch depth by 10-12 inches wide. Great care must be taken to eliminate bumps and fill in low areas. Finished base should be uniform and consistent to produce a finished curb with a consistent height. You should be able to mow on curb but some inconsistencies in your lawn should not be followed by the installer. From a distance your landscape curb will flow and not follow the up and down inconsistencies in your lawn. This should be part of the guarantee.
Design is crucial and should complement your existing or new landscaping. A professional design should flow elegantly and gracefully accenting existing and new planting areas. Ideas and expert consultation should be given, not just an estimate form filled out! Ask for photos of different designs and installations.
Straight Areas: Straight areas should be just that…STRAIGHT. No wavy lines. Even with a high-quality curb machine, proper training and experience is needed to produce straight lines.
Curves and Contours: Design and creative ability is crucial. Be cautious of quick, wavy turns that are not contoured correctly, and a busy “snake like” look. Only simple, precise contours should be done. Look at photos and see jobs.
Quality Product Specifications
Cement: Type IA or 2A Portland cement should only be used. Must be air entrained if using straight Portland.
Sand: Fine washed sand is best.
Reinforcement: 1/8” hot dipped steel cable running throughout the curb.
Mix: The mix should consist of 4 parts washed mason sand to 1 part cement. Fibers added during the mixing process. If color is desired, it is also added during the mixing process.
Control Joints: 2 to 2 ½ feet apart. Joints should be scored ½ through the concrete. A straight bladed tool should be used. Width of joint shall not exceed 1/8 inch.
Strength: 3500 psi. 1700 more with Hot Dipped Steel Cable. "Minnesota Tuff Curb Technology"
Should be patented and made in the United States. Some companies use machines not patented in the U.S. and actually are imitations of the originals. A high-powered gas machine is better for compaction and produces a stronger curb. The extrusion machine is manual so an experienced machine operator is crucial for the dramatic results you deserve.
Curb should be extruded extremely close to lawn side of the trench. There should be no large gaps between lawn and curb. Homeowner should not have to fill in dirt or put sod back in. Curb should match existing lawn elevation creating easy mowing and maintenance. Here, experience is critical.
Integral, (base color) should be mixed thoroughly into the concrete. The base color should always be measured to produce consistent color batches. No colored sealants, paints or slurry coats should be used to just “cover up” the gray concrete. Only a well-known company, that documents all the steps in the manufacturing process to ensure the pigment will be the most consistent in quality and color, should be used. The base color should be complimentary in color to surrounding aesthetics and be natural in appearance.
Accent Coloring, Stamping and Texturing
All companies should offer this. Experience and craftsmanship are the keys in making this process look great. To produce a realistic, natural appearance, release, or accent colors should be cast on the curb and then rolled and stamped into the curb. Choosing complimentary colors to accent landscaping, bricks, pavers, walls, and your home’s exterior is the key ingredient in producing a natural, marbled, antique look. Various rollers, textures, and stamps are used to produce just the right look for your application. A solvent based concrete sealant will be applied after installation is complete.
All starts, stops and tie-ins must be professionally done. They should not stick up or look unsightly. All tie-ins must be clean, flared in, and aesthetically pleasing.
Excess concrete deposited along curb machine mold should be picked up so your lawn can grow to edge. All pieces of concrete dropped on lawn or other areas in the yard should be picked up. Driveways and sidewalks should be swept and hosed off as needed. A large tarp should be laid down when mixing to prevent any mess on the street. Yard should be left as they found it. Unsightly concrete waste makes your curb look inferior.
Plain and Simple…A warranty is only as good as the company backing it up. Don’t be fooled by a company that offers an extended warranty without thoroughly explaining what they will cover. A 2-year materials and workmanship warranty should be standard. A reputable company should fix or replace anything under the warranty.