\When pouring concrete, many different factors will influence the final result, including the quality of the ingredients, the proper mixture, and especially the temperature. While warm conditions are usually ideal for concrete application, problems begin to develop if the mixture’s temperature exceeds 80 degrees. If you’re planning a concrete project this summer, use the following tips to ensure the concrete sets properly.
4 Tips for Pouring Concrete in the Heat
1. Keep the Aggregate in the Shade
Aggregate is the primary ingredient in ready-mix concrete, so its temperature will have the biggest impact on your mixture. Most concrete aggregates will absorb a lot of heat in direct sunlight, so try to keep it in the shade until you’re ready to use it, if possible.
2. Use Cool Water
Depending on the job site, keeping your aggregate out of the sunlight may not be possible. In these cases, use cool water when mixing your concrete, and monitor its temperature carefully. If your local climate is especially hot, you may want to use cold water or even ice.
3. Get an Evaporative Cooler
For large jobs, you may want to consider purchasing an evaporative cooler to keep the aggregate cool. Keeping the material wet with the cooler turned on can dramatically lower the temperature and the problems associated with pouring concrete in the heat.
4. Apply Retarding Mixtures
High heat causes concrete to set more quickly, potentially compromising the strength of the final result. Many manufacturers offer admixtures that can slow the process down so the concrete has time to set properly. However, if these mixtures are used, it’s essential to allow the concrete time to cure.
For over a century, builders and homeowners throughout south central Connecticut have relied on The L. Suzio York Hill Companies for a wide range of building products, from ready-mix concrete to gravel and flowable fill. To see a complete list of their concrete products, visit their website, follow them on Twitter for design ideas and tips, or call (203) 237-8421 to place your order today.