At Allbrite Construction, the concrete pouring jobs are endless. We deal with numerous obstacles in our general contracting services, mostly due to weather. But with consistent communication and staying on top of our project timelines, we ensure nothing falls through the cracks. Installing concrete is challenging, but Allbrite follows an 8-step guide to ensure a smooth plan of action.
What is Concrete Pouring?
Concrete pouring is the process of transferring freshly mixed concrete from a mixer truck into a formwork or mold, where it is leveled and smoothed to the desired shape and finish before it hardens. The concrete is then left to cure, or dry and set, into the desired structure. This process is a crucial step in many construction projects, as it forms the foundation, flooring, walls, or other structures that provide stability and support.
Step 1: Site Work
Before the concrete pouring process begins, the site needs to be prepared by clearing the area of all grass, rocks, trees, shrubs, and old concrete to reduce the chance of heaving from expansive soils and frost. Then, a sub base of fill gravel can be placed and compacted.
Step 2: Forming
Once the sub base is prepared, forms can be set. Concrete forms are a solid barrier that holds concrete in place or forces it to assume a certain shape. Forms should be in good condition, be set to provide the proper slope or grade for drainage, and form clean corners where they meet each other or other structures.
Step 3: Mixing
The general contractor then coordinates the concrete arrival in a ready mix truck. The drum on the back of the truck spins to keep the concrete from settling and getting hard.
Step 4: Placement
Wet concrete is poured into the forms until they are full to the top edge. While the wet concrete is being poured, shovels, rakes, and “come alongs” (special concrete rake) can be used to move the concrete to make sure there are no voids or air pockets.
Step 5: Early Finishing
Next, concrete needs to be leveled with a large metal or wood board. This helps compact and consolidate the concrete, and begins the smoothing process. Next, concrete should be compacted, evened out, and smoothed out.
Step 6: Troweling
Sometimes, a steel trowel finish is needed. The general contractor lets the concrete rest until the surface begins to firm. A steel trowel helps to create a smooth, hard and uniform finish.
Step 7: Final Finishing
The most basic type of finish is known as a “broom finish”. A special broom is pulled across the concrete surface creating a rough textured surface. Other types of finishes include stamped, textured, or smooth trowel to name a few.
Step 8: Curing
The curing process lasts 28 days, with the first 48 hours being the most critical. Curing concrete is providing adequate moisture, temperature, and time to allow the concrete to get hard.
By carefully following this 8-step process, we are able to ensure every concrete pouring project is completed with high-quality results for our high-impact clients. Learn more about our concrete services here.