Top tips before a concrete project


One of the most important factors that determine the success of a concrete installation project is the concrete preparation. Whether you're doing a simple DYI installation or you've got commercial kerbing contractors all over your property, the concrete preparation remains a vital factor of concern. The failures that arise from improper preparation are some of the most expensive to remedy so you need to ensure you don't fall in this trap. If you are about to undertake a concrete project, then here are some few tips to consider.

Perform a moisture and alkalinity test

The state of the subfloor determines how well it's going to support an installation. Once the moisture levels are at their peak, or the pH in them is way too high, then there's going to be a problem. The concrete installed won't adhere quite well and may even void the warranty. Check the manufacturer's instructions of the concrete product you're using, the desired moisture and pH conditions are spelled out.

You should also determine the moisture levels in the air before starting out, especially on projects that also involve installing wooden structures onto the concrete. Concrete is porous, it sucks in moisture like a sponge and adding wood planks to the equations makes the matters worse because wood also absorbs moisture. Underlayment of the concrete with moisture barriers would go a long way in keeping moisture from seeping through.

Limit the fly ash content

Though fly ash has impressive LEED benefits when mixed with concrete, adding too much fly ash messes up the adhesive qualities of the subfloor. Before adding fly ash to the concrete mixture first perform an adhesive bond test between the subfloor and concrete. This will determine the amount of fly ash to add onto the mixture.


You need to make sure your temperatures are in check before starting your duty. If it's too cold, and the temperatures are down to freezing point, then you need to be careful. Concrete sets much slower in lower temperatures and once the water freezes, it expands and may crack the concrete. You can use concrete that sets fast and mix it up with hot water as a way to counter this.

On the other hand, if the temperatures are extremely high, then the upper layer of the concrete is going to dry up much faster than the bottom layers. Shrinking at the top exerts immense pressures at the bottom and what you'll get out of it is a crack. Use the coolest waters and continually spray the concrete with a hose. Covering it up also helps a lot with this.

For more information, check out companies such as East Coast Kerbing Pty Ltd.


10 March 2015

Decorative Concrete: Project Ideas and Uses

Concrete may seem boring to the uninitiated, but as the wife of a concrete contractor, I have learned, over the years, that it is anything but boring. Contemporary concrete can be used in a range of applications from functional sound walls to decorative koi ponds, and it can be left gray, stamped or acid stained. If you are getting ready to do a project, you have come to the right place. In this blog, I am going to post a myriad of information about concrete with an emphasis on project ideas and the different uses of concrete. By the end, I hope you find concrete as exciting as I do!