How to Break Up Concrete Steps


Concrete is useful in many purposes from foundations, to fences, to steps. Concrete is a very hard material, but also brittle, causing it to crack and chip over time. Many times in a remodel it is easier to demolish or break up the concrete rather than repair a large or damaged portion. Breaking up concrete stairs requires strenuous work, so a steady pace is needed to complete the project.

Things You'll Need

  • Leather construction gloves
  • Safety glasses
  • Sledge hammer, 8 pound
  • Chisel
  • Sledgehammer, 3 pound
  • Wheelbarrow
  • Jackhammer (if needed)
  • Put on the leather gloves, and clear the steps of any items or obstacles that would get in the way of the hammer. Put on the safety glasses before beginning any demolition work.

  • Start at the top of the bottom stair and work your way up, using the 8 pound sledgehammer. Begin breaking up the concrete as you strike the hammer onto the concrete steps. Repeat this step until the concrete steps are broken up into fist-sized pieces.

  • Trim or break away any small pieces using the smaller 3 pound hammer and chisel. If the stairs abut next to a home, you may need to chip away any concrete from the stairs that remain stuck to the home's foundation or structure. Chipping this away will give it a clean look.

  • Carry off the pieces of the concrete using the wheelbarrow to a discard area out of the way.

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  • Photo Credit a sledge hammer posing image by timur1970 from
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