Tips for Hot Weather Concrete Construction30 Aug 2016, Posted by Concrete Forms Tips in
Your workers can work all day in the heat if they have enough water and food to keep them going. Concrete is much less forgiving. Seventy-seven degrees is the tipping point where things start to fall apart for concrete work. If you don’t take precautions, your job will experience setbacks from shrinkage and cracks as well as uncontrollable set times.
Whether you are using a gang forming, shoring, or blindsided wall system for your concrete forming, these tips will help you get the job done right even when the heat is unrelenting.
Control the Concrete
You need to take charge over your concrete in the heat so that it remains stable. It starts at the ready mix plant. Many times the plant will chill the water used in the concrete or cool the concrete mixture to help customers stay ahead of the heat.
With this advantage on the front end, you can then begin working on the mixture itself to make sure that as water evaporates due to the high temps it’s replaced with the correct admixture. Retarder can also be added to slow the setting process so that the concrete isn’t weakened by setting too fast.
Cheat the Temperature
You can’t change the temperature of the air outdoors, but you can find a work around. Use shade to your advantage to prevent the sun from hitting curing concrete. Take shade to the next level by waiting till the roof is on a structure to pour concrete.
If no shade is available, you can also use white pigmented compound or white curing blankets to help keep the concrete cool. Don’t hesitate to make your life easier by working at night during the hottest parts of the year. It may prevent you from having to alter your workflow for heat conditions.
Don’t Let the Details Escape You
Heat is the enemy of concrete setting, but it comes from unexpected places. For example, mixing concrete can add up to 5 degrees to the mixture. If you’re already on the edge of acceptable heat limits this could be an unforeseen setback to your job. Problems can even arise when using tools that have been laying out in the sun soaking up heat.
Take care of moisture sucking problems by wetting down the subgrade, steel reinforcement, and form work prior to placement, as it will keep your slump levels consistent.
Heat isn’t the Only Variable
The more guesswork you can take out of concrete forming the better. Heat is only one of many variables to consider when forming concrete. Things like type of forming equipment and a good supplier can be the difference between a good workflow and roadblocks at every turn.
Forming America is ready to supply your forming equipment needs. We will even bring equipment right to your jobsite. Call us to find out more about the equipment we rent and sell.