While some concreting jobs use a regular ready-mix, you can also use specialty mixes for some work. In some cases, a self-compacting mix is an ideal match. This mix has an enhanced flow and can compact itself.
What are the advantages of self-compacting concrete?
Easier and Faster Installation
While ready-mixed concrete is faster to install than concrete you prepare on-site, you still spend some time on this process. You have to pump the concrete into position. Regular mixes might have relatively slow flow rates, so you'll have to wait for all the concrete to pour.
Once you've poured your mix, you might then need to use vibration or consolidation techniques on the pour. These techniques spread the concrete around and compact it so that it sets at the right strength and consistency.
Self-compacting mixes speed up this process. They have faster flow rates than regular concrete. You can pump and pour them faster. Plus, this concrete levels itself. It uses its own weight to compact itself automatically. You don't need to do any extra work on it. Your pours will go faster and more smoothly.
Reduced Pouring Costs
During a regular ready-mix concrete pour, you'll need to assign a crew to manage the concrete as it flows into place. Once it has spread, you'll need workers and tools to use vibration or consolidation equipment on the surface to compact it to the right levels.
If you use a self-compacting mix, then you don't need as much labor or tools on the job. The concrete flows under its own steam. It automatically levels and compacts. This means your labor costs will be lower. You won't need to buy or hire compaction machines or equipment.
No Vibration Problems
If you have to vibrate concrete to compact it, then your site gets noisy. Compaction makes a lot of noise. This can make things uncomfortable for your workers. It might also cause problems with people in neighboring buildings who might report you for noise pollution. You might have to time your pours for specific times of the day when you'll cause less disturbance.
Plus, workers can suffer from injuries and physical stresses when they use manual vibration machines and equipment. This can lead to short-term sickness days and, in some cases, long-term vibrational damage.
A self-compacting mix reduces noise on your site. If you don't have to compact the concrete, you don't make as much noise. Locals are less likely to complain, and you can work at times that suit you. Plus, your workers won't be exposed to potentially harmful vibration work.
To find out more about self-compacting mixes, talk to ready-mix concrete suppliers.