Concrete is used in all manner of projects, in a large part because of its ease of use and strength. Concrete projects that are done correctly become semi-permanent structures and can last for decades with minimal upkeep. However, not all concrete is created equal. That’s why it’s so important to either hire an experienced contractor, or do your research before starting a project of your own.
If you are going to embark on a concrete project yourself, one of the first things you need to figure out is how strong you need the concrete to be. Is there concrete going to be a staircase for people or a ramp for vehicles? Each project will have different demands it needs the concrete to meet, this will influence how you mix the concrete and how you pour it.
Today we’re going to give our top tips for strengthening your concrete. These are all easy and effective ways to make your concrete strong so your finished product can last longer.
One of the oldest and most effective methods of reinforcing concrete is to put rebar or steel mesh inside the area you plan on pouring concrete. Once you have that installed, then pour the concrete on top of it. The finished product will look the same, but the internal rebar or steel mesh will make it significantly stronger than if you just used concrete without any internal reinforcement.
Slow The Cure
The slower concrete cures, the stronger it is. The best way to slow down the curing process is to regularly mist your freshly new concrete every hour on the day you poured it. Then three times a day for the two days after that. Wetting the exterior of the concrete will go a long way towards making your concrete stronger, but the weather when you pour the concrete is another important factor.
If you are pouring concrete on a hot sunny day with low humidity, that concrete is going to try significantly faster than if you had poured it on a cloudy day with a higher humidity level. If you have the time, get everything ready to pour your concrete and wait for the right weather conditions. That can make a huge difference in the final strength of your concrete.
Check The Mix
Calcium is often added to concrete mix to enable a faster dry time during cold weather. This is particularly common if you aren’t mixing the concrete yourself. If you want the strongest concrete possible, it’s important not to add any calcium to your concrete. The downside is that your concrete will take longer to dry, but that’s exactly what will make your concrete stronger.
Vibrating wet concrete is one of the most effective ways of improving the strength of concrete. Vibrations allow wet concrete to seep into hard to reach places, making the pour even more effective. Vibrations allow removal of tiny bubbles from wet concrete, which makes the final product even more solid. There are multiple tools out there that are effective at vibrating wet concrete at a variety of different price points.
Concrete is an incredible product and can last for years when it’s mixed and installed correctly. If you doubt you have the skills to pour concrete yourself, hire a professional. Razorback Concrete is always ready and willing to help. Visit www.razorbackconcrete.com to learn more.