How to pour concrete in hot weather
With summer now on us, your thoughts might be turning to how to pour concrete in hot weather. After all, if temperatures are too high, the quality of the concrete can be compromised. At Doncaster Quickmix, we can provide expert advice on pouring concrete in hot weather, helping to ensure that your construction project goes as planned.
The problem with pouring concrete in hot weather
When pouring concrete in hot weather, there’s a risk that it won’t gain its full compressive strength when cured. Air temperature is less important than the temperature of the concrete. When the temperature is higher than 77F, the process of hydration speeds up, generating internal heat. If it becomes too hot, water is lost via evaporation. The concrete can’t hydrate efficiently due to this water loss and this results in a loss of strength.
In hot weather, the setting time is reduced too. The problem with this is that the quicker the concrete sets, the more difficult it is to finish the concrete properly and in time. Even small delays can affect the integrity of the mix. As such, it’s important to take steps to keep the pour site as cool as possible.
Another issue with the reduced setting time is that when concrete sets prematurely, it starts to become much more susceptible to cracking. Concrete can develop noticeable cracks which not only reduce its strength and durability but impact its appearance too.
Should I delay my project?
Many people wonder if they should delay their construction project until the weather is colder. Whilst this is an option, it’s not usually necessary if you take the right precautions to keep the concrete cool enough. When you deal with a concrete supplier who can guide you through the process of pouring concrete in hot weather, you should be able to avoid the issues that can sometimes occur. If you’re considering delaying your project until later in the year, you should keep in mind that pouring concrete in colder weather can also pose problems.
Experts agree that the best temperature at which to pour concrete in the UK is between 40 to 60F. So, when it dips below 40°F, the chemical reactions that strengthen the concrete slow down, leading it to become weaker. If concrete curing temperatures fall below freezing, the water within the concrete may freeze and expand, causing cracks. Whatever time of the year you choose to pour concrete, there are steps you can take to minimise the impact of extreme temperatures. With careful planning, you can achieve excellent results despite the less than ideal weather conditions.
Tips for pouring concrete in hot weather
If you want to know how to pour concrete in hot weather, keep reading. When pouring concrete in temperatures exceeding 77F, it’s vital to plan ahead. You can offset the damaging impact of excessive heat by following these tips.
- Avoid pouring concrete during the hottest times of the day. This is often between noon and mid-afternoon. Have a look at the weather forecast before pouring concrete. At Doncaster Quickmix, we often advise arranging your order as early in the morning as possible when temperatures are coolest.
- Make sure you have sufficient manpower to handle the amount of concrete you’ve ordered for both the pouring and finishing processes. Provide access to drinking water when temperatures are at their highest to ensure all workers stay hydrated.
- Keep equipment out of direct sunlight until you need it for pouring the concrete. This will stop tools like mixers, spades, and wheelbarrows from heating the concrete whilst it’s being poured.
- Store concrete in the shade, such as in a garage, to keep it cool before using it.
- Use sunshades or windbreaks to provide protection.
- Use an appropriate curing agent. The concrete needs to be cured at the right time with a suitable curing agent. This can be applied via a sprayer. Many people also recommend covering the concrete with plastic sheeting to shade it from the harshest temperatures and lock in the moisture.
Seek advice from the experts
Pouring concrete in hot weather can be challenging. If the right precautions aren’t taken, your concrete could become compromised, potentially impacting the success of your construction project. Fortunately, the team at Doncaster Quickmix are on hand to provide expert advice. We’re leading suppliers of high-quality concrete in Doncaster and Rotherham and we’ve gained an excellent reputation over the years. We can help you learn how to pour concrete in hot weather, even when temperatures are at their highest.
Helping you plan your pour
At Doncaster Quickmix, we won’t just help you to find the right mix for your project. Well also assist you in planning your pour so that it achieves excellent results. For example, when laying concrete for a driveway, control joints should be cut into the slab. However, when temperatures are higher, these should be cut nearer together. There’s a lot you can learn from your concrete supplier to help you mitigate the impact of heat and ensure a high-quality pour. We’re always on hand to assist you with your concrete requirements.
Now that you know how to concrete in hot weather, it’s time to get in touch with Doncaster Quickmix. We can supply you with quality concrete quickly, making sure it meets the needs of your domestic or commercial construction project. As leading concrete suppliers in Doncaster and Rotherham, you can rest assured that we can meet your ready mix concrete requirements. Call us on 01302 972997 (Doncaster Office) or 01709 807977 (Rotherham Office) to speak to one of our friendly and knowledgeable team. Alternatively, please send a message through the website and we’ll get back to you right away. We can provide expert advice as well as a competitive quote for the concrete you need.