cold weather concreting
cold weather concreting

Fixing concrete becomes a more challenging task on cold days. Heavy snowfall and excessive moisture in the air are some of the typical places of winter season which prevent the concrete slab from hardening properly in time. When the temperature drops to 0 °C or minus 7 °C, it seriously affects the curing of the concrete.

When applying concrete during cold winter days, it is recommended that you clean the surface properly and ensure that no snow, water droplets, dust or any other material is present on the surface. Experts recommend the use of heat preservation methods for high-quality concrete pouring during the winter; The heat preservation technology will help you achieve a quality finish.

Concrete curing plays an important role in building durability and strength in concrete. The process requires specific temperature and humidity conditions to ensure the expected end result. Properly cured concrete is strong enough to survive any harsh weather conditions. Let’s continue reading some useful tips on treating quality concrete during cold winter days.

How can different materials help cure quality concrete?

You can use different ingredients depending on the total amount of ready Mix concrete What needs to be fixed and the shape of the surface. Materials such as insulating sheets, insulating blankets, straw plastics, windbreaks and heating coils, when used properly, can help raise the temperature as well as generate the constant heat needed for an effective concrete hydration process. can. However it is best to reschedule a concrete placement job when the temperature is below minus 7°C while the concrete will not cure properly which will lead to cracks and poor compressive strength.

Some useful tips for quality concrete treatment in cold weather

Following are some proven tips shared by concrete experts to help you cure concrete properly during winter days.

  • When the temperature is below freezing point, i.e. 0 °C, ensure that the ratio of cement and water in the concrete mix does not exceed 0.40. The correct water and cement ratio is critical to proper concrete hydration.
  • When it is extremely cold outside, you can use a polyethylene enclosure and a propane heater to prevent the concrete mix from freezing too quickly. Applying constant heat will maintain the temperature required for quality concrete to cure.
  • Experts recommend contractors use Portland Cement Type III; This special type of cement allows the concrete to set rapidly without compromising on its quality. Remember, high moisture levels can bring about corrosion issues in the case of steel reinforcement.
  • If you remove the insulating blanket abruptly in cold weather, it will cause a significant difference in temperature between the top and middle layers of the concrete surface. Sudden temperature differences can cause cracks in the concrete.
  • The use of previous concrete is recommended for underwater concrete curing, primarily for flatwork construction applications such as walkways. In case you didn’t know, back concrete is mostly coarse aggregate, with a small percentage of fine aggregates, which are mostly sand. Additives are also added to prevent water penetration into the surface. Concrete walkways constructed using this technique will allow any significant amount of water to pass through, but will never allow water to seep beneath the surface of the concrete, which ultimately helps maintain the core’s strength of the path as it is over a long period of time. lasts for time.
  • Be extra careful with the edges and corners. Keep forms intact for the maximum possible time-frame.
  • Use fly ash, furnace slag and silica fume to increase the resistance of concrete to chloride ions. When used properly, fly ash can reap the many benefits of curing concrete. This can help reduce the permeability of concrete to water and other liquids. It can also help to increase the resistance value of concrete to accept attacks and sulfate attacks.
  • At low temperatures, concrete cures slowly. Unlike other days, you will see more bleeding water on cold days. Be patient until all the bleed water has evaporated.
  • Insulation requirement for concrete may vary depending on various parameters such as thickness of concrete, minimum air temperature estimated for concrete protection period and cement content.
  • Use an infrared temperature gun to verify the solid’s temperature during the curing process. As stated above, maintaining the right temperature is important for the quality, strength and overall quality of concrete.
  • You can also use concrete sealant to prevent water from getting inside the concrete. This will not only help avoid failure to cure the concrete but will also increase the lifetime of the concrete.

Hope these tips help you ensure quality concrete cures for your next construction project.

Guest article contributed by

Matt Hubert

Er. Mukesh Kumar

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Er. Mukesh Kumar is Editor in Chief and Co-Funder at Civil Engineering Website. Mukesh Kumar is a Bachelor in Civil Engineering From MIT. He has work experience in Highway Construction, Bridge Construction, Railway Steel Girder work, Under box culvert construction, Retaining wall construction. He was a lecturer in a Engineering college for more than 6 years.