Solutions to the Three Top Challenges of Using Concrete in Construction

Concrete is one of the most popular materials in building and construction. It is also one of the easiest to manage when you know the right construction techniques. On the other hand, if concrete falls into the wrong hands, your construction project can run into massive problems. Some of the common issues that result from poor concrete handling include discolouration, shrinking and formation of scales on the surface. Here is what you need to know about the challenges of handling concrete and how you can resolve them.

Concrete Discolouration

When coloured concreting is properly installed, it is one of the most beautiful types of flooring you can encounter. Regular concrete also has a certain characteristic colour, especially when you use one batch for the entire area. Sudden changes in the cement and other materials used to create the concrete could lead to discolouration of the product. Some of the guidelines to follow to avoid discolouration are to always let the mix supplier know your tolerance levels, ensure the subgrade is uniform, avoid finishing concrete before the water has evaporated from the subgrade and avoid hard trowelling on the surface of the concrete. If you aren't sure about the pouring process, it is advisable to have a competent contractor handle the mixing for you.

Formation of Scales on the Surface

The second most common complication that arises when concrete floors are installed is scaling. Scaling happens when the top layer of the concrete breaks and bits keep peeling off. Sometimes, scaling happens when concrete is exposed to endless cycles of freezing and thawing, especially if the concrete did not have air worked into it. To prevent this problem, ensure that you use low-slump air, do not work on concrete until all air is evaporated from the surface, and finally, avoid chemicals and salt on concrete during cold months.

Surface Cracking

The third most common concrete problem is known as crazing. This is a weakness in which several interconnected cracks form on the surface of the concrete. Crazing happens when the cement comes onto the surface and shrinks. The best way to prevent crazing is to properly time the concrete pouring process. You should also avoid finishing concrete until all the water has evaporated. 

All these are simple tips that will give your coloured concrete a smooth and beautiful appearance. The essential thing to remember is that only professional concrete contractors understand all these challenges and how to prevent them. Always engage professionals in your project to prevent damage and losses. 

About Me

Laying New Concrete

Hello, my name is Tim and this is my concrete blog. You may think that concrete is pretty boring but I find it really interesting. I don't work as a professional concrete contractor, but last year, I spent a couple of weeks working along with some contractors I hired to lay some new concrete on my drive. Until then, I had always thought that laying concrete was really easy. It is, in fact, a very impressive skill. Having picked up some top concrete laying tips, I decided that I should probably start a blog so I could share them with the rest of the world.


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