Aggregates are composed of sand, gravel, or crushed stone and excavated from quarries. This collection creates concrete and cement, but it’s also used in landscaping and as a temporary hardening agent for roads exposed to excess mud or water. Concrete consists of around 75% aggregates, while asphalt has 90 to 95%. Here’s a quick guide to the different types of aggregates to help you decide which is best for your construction project.
Factors to Consider When Selecting an Aggregate
Friction builds heat, and heat causes erosion, so keep in mind how much of it will be generated across the surface area. For example, if you’re building a road, cars and trucks will create a lot of friction. Construction companies may add a high-friction surface treatment or polish to help maintain the heat, but in most cases, using a granite and limestone aggregate will suffice.
Flat and elongated particles aren’t ideal choices for mixing fresh concrete because they create too many spaces in the concrete. If your material has a lot of gaps, you can use sand to fill them. However, sand isn’t sturdy and shouldn’t be used independently.
Different Types of Aggregates
Aggregates are available in a variety of shapes, sizes, and hardnesses. Depending on the project, your material needs to have a particular shape and texture to be effective.
- Secondary aggregates are obtained from crushing concrete or bricks, and they’re an excellent option to use as a large-grade filler or for reinforcing weak soil. It can also be used as an undercoating, which may be necessary for areas where the soil is susceptible to erosion.
- Granite or limestone is typically used in high-grade concrete. These are the best to use for road construction, and their secondary material is ideal for lower travel zones and repairs.
- Gravel is used often as an aggregate; however, it doesn’t have the tensile strength of granite. Avoid using gravel for roads that need reinforcements or are responsible for frequent truck traffic.
If you’re looking for quality aggregate for your next project, contact the team at Sanford's Service Center in Pohoa, HI. This family-owned business has been serving the local community’s building and agricultural needs since 1977. They carry ready-mix concrete, sand, and granite for construction sites and also offer hauling services for residential projects. View a full list of services online, or call (808) 965-8144 to rent a truck or schedule service.