Concrete is a more complex material than you might have realized. In fact, it is not just water and some rock dust. There are components and ingredients involved and multiple mixtures and variations of concrete, as well as numerous products.
Ingredients in Concrete
Concrete can be mixed up from a bunch of different ingredients. While water and cement are constants in the production of concrete, varying amounts of both make a very different concrete mixture. In different types of concrete, you may have whole chunk gravel, fine gravel, or no gravel at all. You may have powdered lime and limestone, or you may have sand and volcanic ash. There are many other components or ingredients used, and it all depends on the type of concrete and the manufacturer that makes it.
Products Made with Concrete
As for products made with concrete, there are many:
- Dry concrete mix for easier transport and for those that want to mix small batches of concrete without hiring a concrete contractor.
- Liquid concrete stored in heated barrels to prevent it from drying and curing.
- Cinder blocks for faster building construction and easier construction of foundations
- Concrete bricks (not to be confused with cinder blocks)
- Concrete slabs for faster creation of driveways, walkways, and sidewalks.
- Polished concrete for indoor commercial flooring
- Prefabricated concrete walls (of limited height for easier transport)
- Concrete forms for filling
- Concrete stepping stones
- Concrete levees
- Concrete speed bumps
- Concrete bridge sections
- Mixed/mixing concrete in a concrete mixer to be used onsite for paving
If concrete can be used, it will. The strength and durability of this material lends itself well to high-traffic surfaces or to buildings that need to hold up over time longer than wood structures ever could.
Choosing the Right Type of Concrete and the Right Concrete Product
If you think that concrete is a good option for your next project, consider consulting with a concrete manufacturer and/or paving contractor. They can tell you exactly what kind of concrete is best for your plans, and what concrete product (e.g., slabs, forms, liquid, dry powder, etc.) will be easiest and best to work with. It may help to hire a paving contractor to do the job and get it right the first time, seeing as concrete is not the easiest product to mix correctly or spread evenly after it has been mixed. If additional applications to the concrete are made to alter its appearance, then you definitely need professional help.
To learn more, contact a company like Pendleton Ready Mix Inc.