How Does Concrete Work?

Let’s talk about how concrete works. Concrete is made simply of water, aggregate and cement mixed in proportions to a precise consistency. The key to achieving the strongest concrete is to have the mixture of ingredients properly proportioned.

Thankfully products like Quikrete make the job simple and easy for the average concrete job. But, even with the best products, it’s still up to you to get the perfect amount of water into the mixture. Too much water makes the concrete weak, a thin consistency, and if too little water is used, then the particles within the concrete won’t stick together appropriately.

If you are mixing concrete at home (as a rule of thumb, you can adequately mix enough concrete to do any at-home project, but it your job is bigger than, say, thirty-five to forty bags—some of you this may be less, some more—consider hiring a concrete truck to bring to the jobsite ready-mixed concrete) mix the concrete in a wheel barrow—also you could rent or buy a concrete mixer, which is relatively cheap. In addition to whatever mixing container you have, you’ll need a simple garden hoe and a large bucket; also, important to note that safety gear such as gloves and protective eyewear should be worn, always, always wear your safety gear.

Add the water to the concrete. One of the most common mistakes is to add too much water too soon, and too much water proves impossible to take away. Mix the water into the concrete and work it in the mixing container with the garden hoe, shovels of various types would also work for this. You want the concrete to appear wet, but also to stay together thickly, more like a clay than a puddle muddy water. If the mixture has any dried balls present, like little rocks that won’t cling to the rest of the mixture your concrete mixture is too dry. Add water in increments until the perfect consistency is achieved.

If you have any other questions or would like more advice how to mix concretes for your next job, call Shotcrete Montana today.