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How Does NYC Weather Affect Sidewalks?

This year in NYC, the lowest and highest recorded temperatures ranged from 8 °C (−13 °C) to 97 °C (36 °C). Also, this year's total rainfall was 46.6 inches. It demonstrates that harsh weather is nothing new to residents of New York City. You must have experienced every kind of weather, from scorching hot summers to freezing, icy winters.

There is no doubt that both people and their surroundings suffered greatly as a result of these adverse weather conditions. It may be difficult to safeguard your driveway and walkways from weather damage, but you can take preventative steps to save the internal surfaces of your property.

The Sidewalk Repair in Manhattan professionals are here to assist you in protecting your concrete buildings with some incredible advice and tactics for professional sidewalk care. Get ready to handle any kind of weather in New York City by reading this article.

What Effects Does The Weather Have On Sidewalks In Manhattan?

You may have varying effects on your sidewalks depending on the weather. Let's first discuss the kinds of harm your walkways could experience from severe weather before getting into prevention measures.

Extreme Heat

Extreme heat can cause the concrete to expand. If the expansion joints between two concrete slabs of sidewalks don’t have enough space, the concrete might crack because of the additional pressure.

Similarly, a high UV index can cause the concrete surface to show discoloration and minor damages like soft spots and small ripples.

Severe Cold

The concrete may shrink and crack in a cold climate. Similarly, if there is moisture in the soil beneath the concrete surface, the freeze-thaw cycle is frequently responsible for sidewalk degradation during the winter.

Using strong deicing salts throughout the snowy season can cause cracks, potholes, and other concrete flaws to develop.

Dry and Moist Weather

The amount of humidity in the air affects how quickly water evaporates off concrete. When there is little humidity, the concrete may dry out quickly and develop shrinkage cracks.

In a similar vein, concrete curing can take longer and perhaps have an impact on the final appearance of the concrete surface with high humidity and extremely high temperatures.

Rainy Weather

When concrete is poured during rainfall, too much water may be added to the mixture, which could weaken the concrete. Furthermore, a lot of rain could damage the cement paste and leave blemishes on the concrete.

This is the reason it's usually best to avoid pouring concrete during the rainy season.

Why Is Weather A Challenge For Sidewalk Maintenance In Manhattan?

Maintaining NYC's sidewalks is difficult, but the largest obstacle isn't the amount of foot traffic—rather, it's the unpredictable weather in the city. Within a few hours, the weather in New York City can change drastically, from intense summer heat to unexpected rainstorms. This volatility causes chaos not only on the city's sidewalks but also when it comes to planning your day.

While heavy rains can wash away the sand and gravel that hold the sidewalk together, causing erosion and potholes, high temperatures can cause concrete to expand and break. A phenomenon known as "freeze-thaw cycles" may result from regular temperature fluctuations, in which water seeps into minute cracks in the pavement, freezes, and then expands to do more harm.

As much as wear and tear and foot traffic certainly contribute to sidewalk deterioration, the real obstacles come from weather-related problems. Think about the hardworking maintenance workers who have to deal with Mother Nature's moods every day the next time you're walking around in Manhattan. 

How Does Icy Weather Lead To Sidewalk Deterioration?

Intense cold, heavy snow and ice conditions can all cause sidewalk degradation. Even though you might not be aware of it, each of these factors causes the concrete to degrade gradually.

The freeze-thaw cycle is the main factor contributing to sidewalk instability in the winter. Generally, if there are already a few gaps in the sidewalks that allow water to seep through, you need to know how to fix them so that the water doesn't accumulate in the soil.

During the winter, this water freezes and may cause a freeze-thaw cycle. Frequent cycles of freezing and thawing can cause soil disturbances and uneven surfaces.

Can Flooding Cause Foundation Damage?

Furthermore, serious threats to the stability of the sidewalks can come from flooding and rain. Rain has the potential to seep into the ground and wet the dirt underneath pavements. The soil may get too wet and lose its firmness and stability. 

This takes place due to

How Can You Preserve Your Sidewalks From Severe Weather?

You need to take some preventative steps to strengthen the longevity of your sidewalks because of the effects that severe weather can have on them.


As you can see, the weather in New York City has a big impact on how well sidewalks function. Every season has the potential to harm your sidewalks, from the intense summer sun to the persistent winter rains and snowfall.

We think you will be better equipped to prevent future damage to your sidewalks by being aware of the effects of each season.

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