How to Make Your Concrete Even Stronger
Concrete is a strong building material no matter what grade and slump it happens to be. However, there are various techniques that DIYers and professional construction workers can use to ensure their concrete reaches its utmost potential in terms of strength. Of course, where professional guidance is required, be sure to seek it out before trying any strength-enhancing techniques by yourself.
Here’s the top 5 ways to optimise concrete strength:
1. Reinforce it
Reinforced concrete is necessary when the concrete must withstand various forces such as strain, deformation, torsion and other effects. This is typical of a building constructed using concrete. For example, concrete floors or cross members that are above the ground floor must use reinforcement, or ‘rebar’.
This is because concrete has remarkable compressive strength, but relatively poor tensile strength. Enter the steel rebar, which is a latticework of steel bars which will give the concrete structural members some much-needed tensile strength. Inserting steel rebar into concrete is a job best undertaken by a professional.
2. Resurface it
After many years of faithful service, some concrete surfaces may begin to scale and form shallow cracks. If you want to mend your driveway, patio or garden paths quickly and avoid having to replace the concrete entirely, a thin layer of resurfacing concrete over the (clean and dry) original concrete could do just the trick.
3. Cure it professionally
What is meant by this is that a professional contractor will understand that concrete must cure slowly in order to reach its maximum strength. If concrete cures (people mistake this process for ‘drying’) too quickly the chemical reactions inside the concrete are not complete and the bonds which make it strong are fewer. Curing slowly by spraying, covering with plastic or curing compounds slow this process down and give the bonds time to form.
4. Mix it correctly
The beauty of ready mix concrete is that it’s mixed by professionals with years of experience. Not only that, it is mixed using computerised batch mixing technology, which means precise ingredient mixing and optimised strength. All you need to do is discuss your exact needs with a reputable concrete supplier and you’re guaranteed the perfect mix for your specific needs.
5. Keep it clean
Sounds insignificant, but it’s a fact that keeping concrete clean is the easiest form of maintenance. It applies mainly to outdoor slabs, and all you need do is brush away muck and anything that could harbour moisture. Leaves are typical and mud also; whatever it is, remove it promptly and this will prevent moisture from forming cracks via freeze thaw. This simple technique will keep your concrete stronger for longer.
Ever Readymix is proud to supply high quality ready mix concrete throughout the Yorkshire region. Whether you require domestic concrete for a single car garage or commercial concrete for a multi-storey car park, we’ve got you covered. Our experienced and knowledgeable team can help from the start if you’re not sure about grades of concrete and quantities and can even provide tips on how to prepare for delivery day. Contact us today to find out more.