We had a new concrete driveway, sidewalk, and stoop installed in late November (it is now early January). The leaves were still falling around the time of the installation so I asked the contractor if we should be concerned about the leaves. He said they would blow them off if they fell on the concrete and the worst we might have is some discoloration. He said leaves in the concrete would not be a problem. Everything looked good after the pour and the contractor used a broom to create a non-slip surface. I did not see any leaves poking through the concrete.

We had our first freezing rain of the season recently and I applied a very limited amount of salt onto the worst of the ice patches. A couple of days later I looked at the concrete and noticed a couple of spots on the driveway and stoop where the concrete had flaked away. It may not be clear from the pictures, but where the concrete flaked away there is a leaf embedded in the concrete. I am not certain the the spots that are flaking are exactly where I put the salt. I am also not certain of when the spots started flaking. We are in the north-eastern United States and before the freezing rain we had a couple of weeks of temperatures at or below 10 degrees F.

So, I have a couple of questions...

I know salt is not good for concrete, but I have never seen it cause concrete to flake like this. Did the salt cause the damage, the recent cold, or was it the leaves in the concrete?

What should I do about the flaking spots? I will talk to the contractor but I wanted to do some research first. Are these flakes an indication of a poorly done job, are they something that can be "spot fixed," or should I just ignore them?

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    Leaves in the concrete are definitely a sign of sloppy workmanship, IMHO. – Ecnerwal Jan 17 '18 at 3:15
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    looks like they added concrete onto semi-cured concrete to try to build up a non-slip surface, that's a no-no. it should have been fully cured before finishing, or finished in-situ. especially poor when the hot pour has leaves on top that you "plaster" over. you can fix it, but there might be other areas that haven't appeared yet. – dandavis Jan 17 '18 at 3:16
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    Leaves might be part of the problem, but that surface looks over-worked or over-watered to me. I'd be pushing for a re-pour. Something's not right. – isherwood Jan 17 '18 at 3:17
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    It looks like they just poured a new, thin, concrete coating over the old concrete. Were you there to witness their work? Do you know if they removed the old concrete? I would demand a re-pour done the correct way – d.george Jan 17 '18 at 13:11
  • I wasn't home when they did the pour, but I know they took out all of the existing concrete. The surface was supposed to be rough to make it non-slip. What is the repair if I can't get a re-pour? – Stuart Jan 19 '18 at 5:50

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