There are many factors to consider when it comes to concrete strength, like the quality of raw materials, coarse aggregate ratio, water/cement ratio, temperature, humidity, and curing time of concrete. This article will discuss some of these factors, including the reasons behind them.
Quality of raw materials
Cement is known to conform to appropriate standards, especially if stored in a dry and secured area. The quality of aggregates must also be considered, like their shape, size, and texture, since this helps strengthen concrete. The quality of water used in mixing concrete and aggregate must also be checked by concreters because the presence of chlorides and sulphates may reduce the strength of concrete.
Cement and water ratio
Keep in mind that the initial spacing between the cement grains is due to the water/cement ratio. So, if there is more water on the mix, then the residual void volume is more significant. Also, a lower water-cement ratio will mean lower workability, or it will be difficult to compact the concrete, which reduces strength.
Coarse and fine aggregate ratio
The proportion of fine aggregate in relation to the amount of coarse aggregate will significantly impact the surface of the concrete. Therefore, if you use more fine aggregate, your surface area will also increase, which means the water/cement ratio requirement will also increase. That is why you need to ensure that there is balance between coarse and fine aggregate because this will affect the compressive strength of the concrete.
Aggregate and cement ratio
The volume of cement must compliment the amount of aggregate in the mix since this will affect the area of the solids in the concrete. If the volume of cement is higher than the aggregate, the water demand will also increase. A balanced mix will ensure the concrete will have constant workability and higher strength.
Age of concrete
The degree of concrete strength is relative to its age, provided that it has not been allowed to cure under very low-temperature settings. This means that concreters must not rush the curing process and have followed the industry’s general rule. The basic standard for aging concrete is 28 days because strength and stability have been achieved by that time.
Hence, balance is essential for a perfect mix, including other factors like temperature and weather conditions. So, controlling these factors will provide you with the strength and workability needed for your project. A professional and experienced concreting contractor in Bendigo can get the right balance for a strong and durable finish.
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