When pouring my concrete driveway, where do I get my smooth steel dowels for expansion joints?

Im pouring my own concrete driveway, which will be twenty two x forty feet. I want to make a couple expansion joints in the concrete using smooth steel dowels. They say that 1 half of the lenght of a twenty four inch dowel should be installed in the cement and should be fixed in place, and the other end should be greased when the brand new section is poured. That smooth dowel is very expensive I hear. What would you do?

5 Comments on “When pouring my concrete driveway, where do I get my smooth steel dowels for expansion joints?

  1. There are trowels made for that, by Goldblatt, if I remember. Check your local home improvement store, or their web site. If you still want the steel, how about re-bar ??? Will not be smooth, but shouldn’t bother the concrete any smooth or not….

  2. Expansion joints are made out of felt, or any type of fiber, the black fiber board that is used in building will do, 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick,
    not steel rod that is used to strengthen cement , called re rod
    who ever they’re is wrong

  3. The steel dowels are only used for attaching stairs to houses. A typical driveway is Four 1/2 inch with re-bar or six inches. Re-bar can be mesh, or re-bar three ft on center.
    Every twenty feet you want a break joint. You lay a 2 by 4 across as your guide and use a joint trowel before you put on the final surface. Every forty ft you need a expansion joint. You put a removable two x four with the felt at the forty ft mark. You pour on both sides of the 2 by four, and when you screet the concrete you remove the 2 by 4 leaving the felt as your expansion joint.

    Today a lot of contractors pour every thing in 1 go, and then take a concrete saw and cut the cracking joints and expansion joints the next day.

  4. The only reason you’d need expansion dowels in the driveway is if you are concerned with differential settlement between sections. I would suggest you either lay a wire mesh in the bottom 1/3 of the concrete (but not laying on the ground) or lay in rebar at Twelve 18 inches on center both ways. Again, the rebar should be in the lower 1/3 of the concrete but not touching the ground. It is usually installed on chairs or concrete blocks to keep it off the ground.