10 Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) and Answers about Concrete
What is concrete, how is it formed, and how is it measured? These and other numerous questions linger in the minds of newbies in the construction space. A lot of people have questions to ask but are overwhelmed by the fear of looking silly. Are you here to learn more about the aspects of concrete? Worry no more! You’re at the right place. Here are 10 FAQS and answers about concrete.
What is concrete?
The popular belief is that concrete and cement are the same. However, that’s not true. Concrete is a material that is composed of finely bonded fluid cement that hardens over time. Earlier on, lime-based cement was used to make concrete. However, concrete is nowadays made of hydraulic types of cement, such as Portland cement. Portland cement is a generic term, not a brand name-don’t get it twisted.
The main components of concrete are sand, water, cement, and aggregates. A mixture of water and Portland cement is referred to as paste. That means that concrete is a mixture of sand, aggregates, and pastes. Sometimes people use rocks to replace the aggregates.
There are other types of non-Cementitious concrete with various forms of binding together. They include; asphalt concrete composed of bitumen binder and polymer concrete that is bound together by polymers.
The water-cement ratio influences the strength, workability, and durability of concrete. An optimal cement ratio is required to produce workable concrete. The cement reacts with water whenever mixed with other materials, causing a hydration reaction to begin. This reaction causes the materials to bind together into a stone-like substance- concrete.
Can you reinforce concrete?
Typical concrete mixes are strong enough for most constructions. However, under some circumstances, you may want to improve the durability and strength of the concrete by reinforcing it. If you want your concrete to be more resilient to harsh weather conditions and water, you can change the mixture. However, the easiest method to reinforce your concrete is by adding steel mesh or steel rebars before pouring the mixture.
Does weather affect when to pour concrete?
Concrete that frozen early loses a lot of its overall strength. If done professionally, concrete poured during the cold season is much more durable than concrete ran during the hot season due to the slow hardening (curing) time.
However, it’s best to avoid pouring concrete when the temperatures are lower than 20 degrees Fahrenheit. Additives like water accelerators and reducers can be used to evade potential issues. With these admixtures, the only time that’s not ideal for pouring concrete is when it’s cold or raining.
Can you measure the strength of concrete?
When dealing with concrete, there’s a lot to think about than just the aesthetics. One of the essential aspects of concrete is its strength. But, how do you measure the power of your concrete?
The most popular method of measuring concrete strength is the use of field-cured cylinders. These cylinders are cast, cured, and taken to a laboratory for testing. This is the most effective method since the testing is done in a third-party lab where people have no reasons to interfere with the results.
Can concrete become stronger by drying out?
No. when water, cement, and aggregate are combined, a hydration reaction occurs. The reaction occurs when chemicals in cement and water mix. Hydration forms new crystals, binding them together. The response takes place during the first month of pouring the concrete.
Strength gains and other reactions could occur for years only if there’s moisture to cause more hydration. When the concrete dries out, it ceases to gain strength.
How much concrete do you use?
To measure the amount of concrete you need for any project, you need to:
- Identify how thick you want your concrete.
- Evaluate the length and the width of the area you want to pour concrete
- Determine the square footage of the site you want to cover
- Convert the thickness to feet
- Multiply the thickness by the square footage to determine the amount per cubic foot you need.
Should you use bags or order from a concrete company?
Tough jobs like driveway construction are easier to complete by ordering concrete from a yard rather than mixing the concrete by yourself. For small projects like footings and walkways, you can calculate the number of bags needed.
For durable and elegant coatings and acrylics, check out Top Concrete. Although it might be tempting to perform this DIY task, you will likely spend a lot of time on this project. From creating the budget to getting quality cement and aggregate, there’s a lot you need to consider. Why don’t you get the help of a concrete contractor Vancouver? This way, you’ll rest assured that all your concrete requirement issues are solved.
Can you improve the curb appeal of your concrete?
Yes. Concrete is a common paving substance, but it doesn’t have to have that traditional feel. Re-thinking about your space is framed, and adding a few things can change everything to create an exciting area.
You can refinish the surface with a scoring pattern, stains, and paving veneer. You can also add color to your concrete mix or stamp it to have a concrete or brick look. Stamp concrete is appealing and also helps to hide future flaws.
What De-icers can you use?
Although concrete is durable, following care guidelines will bring value to the investment. It’s not recommended to add De-icers to remove ice and snow during winter. If it’s necessary, adding potassium or magnesium-based De-icers is recommended. However, the best way to remove the snow away is by shoveling.
How long will it take to drive or use the new concrete?
Concrete requires ample time to harden.10-14 days is an ideal time for concrete meant for driveways to harden. Concrete doesn’t cure completely. It’s continuously setting daily. However, concrete gains adequate strength after 28 days.
With these solutions in mind, you have everything it takes to create elegant and strong concrete. If you’re not sure about anything, always seek the help of a professional contractor. An experienced concrete company will help you with the finish, colors, and texture.