On this page:
- How Much Does it Cost to Remove a Concrete Slab?
- Amount of Concrete to be Removed
- Equipment Costs
- Reinforced or Non-Reinforced
- Thickness of the Concrete
- Labor Costs
- Disposal Costs
- How Long Does it Take?
- Concrete Slab Demolition Cost Estimates
- Non-Reinforced Concrete Slab Demolition Estimates
- Reinforced Concrete Slab Demolition Estimates
How Much Does it Cost to Remove a Concrete Slab?
The cost to remove a concrete slab depends on several factors. These include the area of the space, the thickness of the concrete, the working conditions, and whether the concrete is reinforced or non-reinforced.
On average, the cost of demolition is around $3 – $8 per square foot for smaller projects. The cost varies a bit depending on the size of the project, see the average cost for various size projects.
A small 100 ft2 slab removal usually costs $350 to $800 to remove.
A mid-sized 500 ft2 slab usually costs $1,500 to $4,000 to remove.
A large 2,000 ft2 slab can cost $6,000 to $16,000 to remove.
Of course, repairing or leveling a slab is sometimes an option, but let’s examine some of the factors that impact the cost of removal in more detail to understand what affects the price.
Amount of Concrete to be Removed
This is the primary factor to consider when trying to find out the cost of removing a concrete slab. To calculate the amount of concrete you have, you must find out the length, width, and thickness of it.
Once you know these preliminary figures, it is much easier to estimate the cost of your concrete project in your particular area, as labor costs can differ across the country.
While costs are given as a range in square feet – the length and width of the slab – other factors will go into the final cost. These include the thickness of the slab, with thicker slabs costing more to demo than thinner, and whether or not the slab has rebar or mesh embedded in it.
Costs for concrete removal for up to 4 to 6 inches will usually fall in the $3 to $8 per square foot cost range. However, as soon as the slab becomes thicker than this, you can expect costs to double. This is also true for slabs with rebar, as they are harder to break up and remove.
It should be noted that removing a concrete slab isn’t recommended as a DIY project. The project requires a little skill and some specialized demolition tools.
A pneumatic breaker is the standard tool used for demolishing concrete slabs, both non-reinforced and reinforced. At the low end, these cost at least $1,500; however, they can usually be rented for around $100 per day.
In many instances, though, the slabs may be broken up by front loaders or back-hoes that can lift large pieces at a time. These machines can handle large pieces that generally cannot be moved by hand.
The calculations that follow will assume that the project includes hired professional laborers.
Reinforced or Non-Reinforced
The type of concrete slab you need removed affects the cost to remove it.
A reinforced concrete slab is more challenging to remove than a non-reinforced concrete slab. The difficulty is always proportional to the cost where home improvement projects are concerned, so expect to pay more if your slab is made of reinforced concrete.
Thickness of the Concrete
The thicker the concrete, the longer it will take to demolish. Thus, the thicker it is, the more time it will take to remove, and the more it will cost.
If you’re not sure about the thickness of the concrete slab you wish to remove, a 4 to 6-inch thickness is the norm, and the calculations which follow will be carried out for various thicknesses.
Because of how the reinforcing is done, the slab will often need to be lifted away in large sections, which makes it more difficult to move and transport contributing to higher project costs.
Most will almost certainly need to hire professional laborers to remove a concrete slab, so it is necessary to estimate labor costs for such a task.
First, who do you need to hire? Is it a team of ten, or will a single contractor be able to do it alone? Thankfully, one laborer will suffice for this demolition project. The average cost for demolition labor is $30 per hour.
If you do choose to DIY the project, you could save $1,000 by doing the work yourself, provided you have the tools and stamina necessary.
Once the concrete is broken up, it will need to be hauled away and disposed of. You can rent a large roll-off dumpster or haul and dump yourself if you have the equipment to do so. A roll-off often costs around $531 for concrete, or you can take it to the dump yourself at an average fee of $32 to $40 per ton.
How Long Does it Take?
Time is of the essence when you’re paying someone per hour. It is wise to inform yourself about how long the project should take to better understand the costs involved.
On the low end, non-reinforced concrete at 3″ thickness will take 0.030 hours per square foot, while on the high end, reinforced concrete at 8″ thickness will take 0.098 hours per square foot. In other words, the former can be demolished at the rate of 33 square feet per hour, while the latter is a lot more time-consuming at just over 10 square feet per hour.
Concrete Slab Demolition Cost Estimates
Now that we have more information about the relevant factors at our disposal, it is time to provide some specific cost calculations which will help you ascertain what your project will cost.
Non-Reinforced Concrete Slab Demolition Estimates
- 4 inches thick: $3 – $5 per sq ft
- 6 inches thick: $5 – $8 per sq ft
- 8 inches thick: $6 – $16 per sq ft
Reinforced Concrete Slab Demolition Estimates
- 4 inches thick: $5 – $8 per sq ft
- 6 inches thick: $9 – $16 per sq ft
- 8 inches thick: $12 – $18 per sq ft
Of course, every project is unique, so it’s essential to get an estimate from a professional contractor to better understand the costs of your project.
All pricing information on this page is based on average industry costs, and is subject to variance for project-specific materials, labor rates, and requirements.
- Family Handyman, Concrete Demolition Tools and Tips, https://www.familyhandyman.com/project/concrete-demolition-tools-and-tips/
- Budget Dumpster, How to Dispose of Concrete, https://www.budgetdumpster.com/resources/how-to-dispose-of-concrete-and-asphalt.php