What Is the Difference Between Concrete and Flowing Screed?

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Posted on 20 September 2019

To the untrained eye, concrete and screed may seem like one and the same —  on the contrary! Though comprised of the same components, concrete and screed differ in their consistency, application and other key areas. In this article, we’re going to discuss the differences between concrete and screed.


What is the main difference between concrete and flowing screed?

The main difference between concrete and screed is that concrete is used to provide strength and stability, whereas screed is used to provide a smooth surface. In flooring, the underlayer is composed of concrete to ensure strength and durability. Screed is applied as a top layer to a concrete base and is used to provide a smooth, even surface that is aesthetically pleasing and easy to walk over.


What is the composition difference between concrete and flowing screed?

Concrete and screed are made up of the same components — cement, water and aggregates. The difference between the two, however, is that screed contains fewer and smaller aggregates than concrete. Concrete aggregates are typically comprised of stones and gravel, whereas screed uses a lot of fine sand. This reduces the strength of the screed mixture but gives it a much smoother finish.

What is the textural difference between concrete and flowing screed?

The aggregates in concrete are much larger. They are prominent in the hardened mixture and often protrude from the cement. This produces a bumpy texture that can be clearly felt when the mixture has hardened. When wet, the composition differences are even more obvious, as the larger aggregates are clearly visible.

How do the benefits of concrete compare with the benefits of flowing screed?

Using fewer and coarser aggregates gives concrete its strength, durability and workability. This lends itself to use as a stable foundation for a floor, as well as a wealth of other construction projects, including walls, driveways and pavements.

In addition to providing a smooth, even finish to flooring, screed also complements an underfloor heating system. Unlike concrete, screed flows and lays flush against pipework. This eliminates air bubbles and increases conductivity.


What is the application difference between concrete and flowing screed?

Concrete requires professionals and specialist equipment to apply; it isn’t a simple DIY job. The same can be said of flowing screed; a pump is used to quickly pour the mixture into place — just ensure you receive a professionally mixed batch for the highest quality finish.


Learn more about screed: What’s the difference between dry screed and flowing screed?


Here at Doncaster Quickmix, we pride ourselves on our knowledge and professionalism and are happy to offer advice on which product is best for your specific project. Whether you need screed or concrete, we’ll mix the batch ourselves and get it to you as quickly as possible — often the very same day! We also have a collection point for you to pick up your product if you prefer. For more information or to place an order, contact our friendly team today.

We supply screed to domestic and commercial customers in Doncaster, Rotherham and Sheffield. We also supply concrete throughout Doncaster and can deliver to Rotherham and Sheffield subject to price and availability.



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