Concrete is a popular paving material today due to its strength and durability. Another reason concrete is so popular is because you can customize it with different levels, colors, and textures to suit your needs and preferences. But this versatile material does require some care when it comes to installation!
This blog post will cover the five most common mistakes made during installation that you should avoid at all costs to ensure the final results look great and last!
1. Insufficient Site Preparation
A solid concrete surface is the end goal of any construction project. Prepare the site adequately before pouring concrete to ensure a professional outcome. If it is not compacted accurately, then there will be an uneven surface. Also, it’s best to avoid gravel that is too small and thin, as this can cause settling.
2. Not Preparing for Bad Weather
You know what they say, “Always be prepared!” That’s why it is essential to pay attention to the weather forecast when you are planning to carry out concrete work. Even if decent weather is predicted, it beneficial if you are well-prepared.
To ensure that your setting concrete lasts a lifetime, it’s essential to use quality materials and be mindful of the environment in which you’re installing. Extreme cold or heat will do no favors, and rain can ruin an entire project if left unchecked, so keep it covered.
You want your cement slab to be dry and pristine, but a mistake that can make it less so is not weighing the tarp down. With strong gusts of wind, wet tarps will fly off, leaving you with an ugly mess. If water leaks through or there are holes in the cover, this could also ruin your hard work; therefore, always use waterproofing material for optimum protection!
3. Using the Wrong Mix or Cement-to-Water Ratio
It’s vital to get the concrete mix right before pouring. Different types of jobs call for different mixes, so it’s essential to take special care to avoid frustration and ensure quality results that meet your lofty standards and are worth the investment.
Also, a perfect concrete slab requires a well-balanced mixture of water and cement. Too much water weakens the concrete, while too little makes for difficult pouring – so be sure that your proportions are just right!
4. Forgetting the Finishing Work
Pouring the concrete does not mean your work is done. If you neglect to do finishing work on wet cement before it dries or if you mess up, problems will arise later down the line.
If you forget to screed the concrete, it will be rough and uneven when it sets. Running a screed board over wet concrete, moving back and forth along the forms helps remove any excess that might lead to an unleveled surface. You’ll also want to edge your fresh slab once dry: do this by running the edging tool between forms and aggregate – making long gentle strokes in a back-and-forth motion.
Also, concrete edges should be floated before being compacted to remove the marks from edging.
Furthermore, if you’re pouring concrete in an area where people will be walking, remember to add textured finishes with a concrete broom once the surface water evaporates. This will facilitate better traction for a safer grip.
5. Removing Forms Too Early
When it comes to removing the forms, first make sure the concrete has set. You should wait for at least 48 hours because removing the forms too early can undo all your hard work. It will cause the concrete to collapse, crack, and sag.
You may have heard that concrete is a pretty tough material to work with. It can be challenging for those who are inexperienced in the field, but it doesn’t need to be! National Pavement Partners can make the whole concrete installation process as smooth and worry-free as possible in any of the following locations: Fort Collins, Loveland, Denver, Castle Rock and Colorado Springs. Get a free estimate now!