The national average cost for concrete removal is $825. Most homeowners pay between $650-$1,090. Prices on the low end start at $295. On the high end, prices average $4,149. The total cost for concrete removal will depend on its square footage and any special features the project has.
Concrete removal costs:
|National average cost||$825|
|Average cost range||$650-$1,090|
Concrete is sturdy as heck — making it terrific for driveways, walkways and patios. But it's also extremely hard to remove concrete without professional help. Concrete contractors are equipped with the right tools, trucks, and equipment to remove concrete quickly and safely. If you’re ready for old concrete to be gone, here are project costs to consider.
What’s in this cost guide?
The total number of square feet of concrete to be removed is the biggest project cost factor. The larger the area, the more labor and tools are required to complete the job. Many concrete removal specialists reduce the price per square foot for removal once a project hits a certain size. Although overall project costs are still higher with a larger project, the price per square foot is lower.
For example, 4Sons Concrete in Portland, Oregon, charges $3-$4.50 per square foot for less than 800 square feet and $2.25-$3.75 per square foot for more than 800 square feet.
Concrete driveways can last up to 50 years under proper conditions, but they can fail or show signs of wear and tear, including frost heave, excessive pitting, cracking from extreme weight, or sinking slabs.
4Sons Concrete charges $1,500 ($2.50 per square foot) to remove a 600-square-foot concrete driveway. In this example, the driveway allowed easy access for the demolition machines, and there was no steel reinforcement slowing progress. The overall cost included three to four hours of work for a two-person crew using machinery. If there had been rebar in the concrete, the price per square foot would have been 75 cents higher and the dumping fee would have increased too.
Some concrete removal specialists charge a minimum fee for smaller projects, such as removing walkways and sidewalks and covering transportation costs, tools, labor, and other business overhead. Other companies may only agree to remove a sidewalk if the company is hired to pour concrete at the same time. 4Sons Concrete charges $1,250 to remove and re-pour one yard of walkway.
Taking care of a concrete removal job by hand can take more than twice as long as using a machine. To remove a 300-square-foot concrete patio, 4Sons Concrete charged $4 per square foot for a total of $1,200. The two-person crew used sledgehammers and jackhammers to break up the patio and wheelbarrows to haul it out because there was no truck access to the backyard. Overall, the cost included one and a half days of work for a two-person crew with no heavy machinery.
Concrete removal costs are based on the square feet, accessibility of the job site and whether heavy machinery, like a skid-steer, can be used or if the concrete must be removed by hand.
Regional dumping fees and local labor costs also affect project costs. That’s why your ZIP code matters, and pricing can vary depending on whether you’re in Denver or Dallas.
The price per square foot will typically be higher for smaller projects because a company has to meet its business overhead. Here's a deeper dive into the factors that affect the cost of concrete removal.
The more concrete removed, the higher the dumping fee. The heavier the dump load, the higher the transportation costs — for gas. Dumps typically charge up to $100 per ton (2,000 pounds) for concrete. So if a patio being removed contains 6,000 tons of concrete, the project cost will include several hundred dollars in dumping fees alone.
Accessibility and hand demolition
The location of the removal and the type of concrete play a key role in labor costs, says Henry Fuapau of 4Sons Concrete. When a concrete removal crew is not able to use its hydraulic and machine-operated equipment to quickly break up the concrete, the contractors have to do it by hand using sledgehammers, pry bars and other handheld tools. This process takes more time and costs more in labor.
Another factor that raises labor costs is the presence of rebar (or reinforcing steel), which must be cut by hand. Concrete containing rebar also costs more to deposit at the dump, which increases the overall project cost. 4Sons Concrete charges 50-75 cents per square foot to remove the rebar, depending on accessibility. Unreinforced concrete is much quicker, and therefore much less expensive, to remove.
There are major benefits to hiring concrete removal pros, such as proper handling of materials, injury prevention and avoiding property damage or problems when installing new concrete.
Concrete is a sturdy material composed of Portland cement, gravel and sand. After the dry mix is combined with water and has hardened, it creates a durable material — concrete — that can withstand great weight and impact. For this reason, a concrete slab is difficult to break apart, hard to manage and heavy to haul away. Homeowners attempting to DIY will need tools such as jackhammers, concrete saws and serious muscle power.
For large projects, hiring a professional means they handle pulling any necessary demolition permits on your behalf. Pros also safely navigate underground utility lines when hired for concrete removal.
How to hire a concrete contractor
From Minneapolis to Miami, you can follow the same guidelines to find a concrete removal company.
- Read online reviews. Peer reviews give insight into what your customer experience will be like.
- Measure your sq. ft. Preparing the pro with the approximate number of square feet you need removed will help them give you a ballpark estimate over the phone.
- Look for a licensed contractor. If you’re having the same pro pour new concrete once the demo is done, look online to make sure they have an up-to-date contractor's license that is in good standing.
- Multiple estimates. For large removal projects covering thousands of feet, be sure to get at least two to three free estimates to understand your pricing options.
- Clearly written contract. Make sure you get a signed agreement outlining the scope of work, hauling and dumping details, and cleanup costs.