Frequent Asked Questions
Concrete and cement are different. Cement is produced from clay, limestone, and iron ore. This gives is a characteristic gray color. Cement is one of the many ingredients of concrete. Aside from cement, the other components of concrete are rock and sand. When mixed with water, all these ingredients will react to form the wet cement that we know. When it dries, this will now form the hard concrete which has a consistency comparable to that of rock. What is important to recognize here is that cement and concrete are not the same although they are often confused.
Yes, a lot of different kinds of concrete are available. Variants of concrete can be made simply by modifying its different components. Concrete mixes with different amounts of ingredients will also have different levels of strength, hardness, durability, and flexibility. What you will need will depend on what you will use the concrete for. Other special types of concrete are the eco-friendly ones which lets water freely through the concrete itself. If you want the strongest kind of concrete for your construction project, note that strength will not only rely on the mix proportions but also on the quality of mixing.
Most people will need a concrete contractor for their project. Unless you are a concrete contractor yourself, you will likely need external help from professionals. Handling concrete takes more than knowledge and skills. Among the important things about concrete work is experience and practice in the field. Moreover, many tools and equipment are used in every project that uses concrete. It might not be easy to have access to these kinds of equipment and let alone operate them properly in the absence of licensed and experienced professionals. Moreover, activities like excavation and subgrade preparation can almost never be done without a contractor.
No, it is not possible for concrete to set properly in the rain. We at the company are very particular with this. As contingency plan, we always make sure that we bring enough tarps to the site, enough to cover the area in case it unexpectedly pours. Water is one of the main components of concrete. However, it can neve be overemphasized that it should always be in proper amounts only and that it must be mixed properly with the rest of the ingredients. Additional and improperly mixed water from the rain can ruin the balance and proportions of the ingredients in the mix.
Yes, there are many ways to add color to concrete, and one of the most practical ways is painting. Due to the unique properties of concrete, special paint must be used if you want the paint to stick well. The paint that is especially designed to use on concrete is the elastomeric paint, also known as masonry paint. This paint has special components that make it suitable to use for concrete, a material that can periodically contract and expand. It is advisable to use classic roller instead of sprayer to apply them since, they have added chemicals which can block sprayer devices.
Concrete is tough and durable under ideal conditions. However, there are instances where concrete can crack. This is a common problem for concrete, although the severity may vary on a case-to-case basis. Many factors can cause the concrete to crack. A common mistake is adding too much water in the mix. Excess water can greatly expand the volume of the wet concrete. Hence, during the drying phase, more shrinkage will happen if the volume is expanded more than expected. The pulling forces involved in the shrinking would cause the concrete to break apart. This will often manifest as visible cracking.
Allowing the concrete to cure is a very crucial part of every concrete project. It takes time for the concrete to gain strength. It is not advisable to drive your car on your concrete driveway within less than 10 days since pouring. The concrete in your driveway will typically gain about 90% of its expected strength with the first seven days after pouring. However, it will not be stable yet during this time. It will remain vulnerable to changes until about one month. Therefore, do not park your car on it during the first 30 days or so after pouring.
damages from everyday use, wear and tear, and spills. They are composed of special chemicals which may include polyurethane, epoxy, or penetrating resin. Those made with acrylic are suitable too. Most of these can easily be bought in hardware outlets. One application is enough to protect the floor for a couple of years. In terms of the frequency of use, it can be applied as infrequent as every 2-5 years. Therefore, applying concrete sealant is a very convenient and inexpensive way of prolonging the life of your concrete.
Yes, weather condition may possibly affect the concrete. This is especially true when it is still being poured and set. Weather can really affect concrete, especially the temperature. Some heat is needed in the mixing of the concrete. It cannot be too cold. High temperatures can affect the stability and the behavior of the concrete. Therefore, some problems may be faced when the ambient temperatures are exceedingly cold. For example, the concrete can lose much heat between mixing in pouring, such that it ends up prematurely freezing before it has properly solidified. This is why we need to be careful in pouring concrete during the winter.
Many materials can be used for driveways. Some people still use dirt and grave today. Asphalt and concrete are at the higher end of the spectrum. Between these two, concrete remains superior. Having to pay more for concrete also means getting more benefits and less hassle. Since asphalt is softer, it is more frequently and easily damaged. Therefore, more frequent repairs may be needed. This may be more expensive than just having concrete installed in the first place. On the average, a concrete driveway is also expected to last about 10 to 20 years more than an asphalt one would.
A lot of the qualities of your concrete will rely on the proper mix proportion and compositions of the concrete mix. In general, there are three major components of concrete: the cement, rock, and sand. The proportions are arranged by the parts needed for each type. A mix will be composed of seven parts. A standard mix will have a 4-2-1 composition. This is with four parts crushed rock, two parts of sand, and a single part for cement. This is applicable for many settings. If you want to improve your concrete’s compressive strength, you can increase the proportion of rock.
Yes, concrete is one hundred percent recyclable. Another good thing about this is that there are many opportunities to recycle concrete at any given point of its life cycle. Even the remnants produced from its manufacturing can be used to make some of the aggregate materials. At the end of its life in service, demolished and removed concrete can be recycled for new construction projects. They can used to make new buildings and structures, as well as aggregates and pavements. So, if you are looking for a material that has less impact on the environment, concrete will be a great choice.
People may feel that testing concrete during the early phases of construction is too much or unnecessary. However, it is very important. This is one way of making sure that any problems can be detected early, and therefore resolved before it gets any worse. Among the common tests done during the early phase are the slump test and the air content measurement. These are tests that can, in general, assess for the strength and risk of cracking. Good assessment using methods and tests like these can help guide the workers on what should be done to mitigate the anticipated problem
Stains are a common problem for concrete, especially in driveways. The main substances that can cause these stains are motor oil from vehicle leaks. Therefore, an appropriate substance to use should be something that can act on grease and oil. One of which is sodium triphosphate. You can easily buy these in hardware outlets or even in supermarkets. Simply place an adequate amount of the substance on the stained area, and let it soak for a while, about 30 minutes. After that, you can use a stiff brush to rub it off with warm water. Detergent can also be used.
Yes, concrete requires maintenance. However, this is usually very minimal. Concrete is among the lowest maintenance materials for construction since it does not need special protection against rotting or rusting. Some things that you can do to keep you concrete in good condition includes cleaning. Dirt can be removed with a hose or powerwasher. Stains can be removed by chemicals and a brush. For mechanical damages like cracks and chips, consult your concrete contractor about possible repair options. They can determine the kinds of repairs that must be done, and they can also decide if repair is not an option anymore.
The usual color of concrete is gray. This color mainly comes from its components which include rock, sand, and cement. Crushed rock and sand usually have a gray tone. Cement is gray because of its components. The main ingredient of cement is iron ore. This is a black substance. When this black substance is mixed with other powdery compounds, the black color is diluted into gray. This results to the gray concrete that we familiar with. Not a lot of people are happy with this gray color. Fortunately, concrete can be colored by various methods including staining, painting, and dyeing.
No, this is not how concrete gains strength. However, the gaining of strength by the concrete can be associated with the drying process. The main mechanism by which concrete gains strength is in the chemical reaction between the cement and the water known as hydration. With this process, crystals and compounds are formed within the concrete mix. This entraps the solid aggregates into the hydrated mixture. While water is present, the concrete can gain strength by this reaction. So, while the drying process has not been completed, the concrete continues gaining strength. Therefore, it is the hydration and not the drying that strengthens concrete.