Concrete is one of the world’s most commonly used construction materials, owing to its strength, durability, and versatility. It is made from cement, water, and aggregates such as sand, gravel, and crushed stone. Once set, it becomes a hard, stone-like material that can be used for various applications. In this blog, we will discuss some of the many uses of concrete.
What do roads have in common with concrete? They’re both what connects us to our destinations. As far back as recorded history tells us, people have been using stone to pave their paths and roads, which later evolved into what we now know as concrete road surfaces. Concrete became even more popular after World War II due to its low cost compared to asphalt paving.
If you’ve ever wondered what keeps your house from collapsing, it’s what you don’t see that does: the foundation. The foundation of a building or any structure provides support and stability to what is built on top of it.
Concrete foundations are most commonly used in construction because of their cost-effectiveness and durability. It’s also easier to build on than other materials, such as rock, so what you see when looking at your actual house is just one small part of what makes it stand up straight.
Find out why concrete is used in construction
Nothing may be more annoying than finding an available parking space when no cars are parked inside the lot. With concrete, this problem can easily be solved using parking stops – concrete boxes placed across each row in the parking lot.
This is what prevents cars from being able to move through adjacent spaces, making it easier for us to find an available spot whenever we need one.
Did you know that what you see when looking at your house’s walls is not concrete? Many homes have concrete siding on the outside, making them more attractive and durable, especially in areas with harsh weather conditions where wind can easily tear off poorly-constructed roofs or walls. Some building materials are also mixed with concrete to further improve its protective properties against water, fungi, insects, and extreme temperatures, making it suitable for exterior uses.
We’ve all seen it before – what appears to be light-coloured cement on picture frames surrounding what seems like bathroom tiles. Tiles are not made of concrete alone, but what gives them their solid white appearance is the glaze that coats them.
The mixture used for creating tile can make tiling rather expensive, especially since some tiling materials require more than one concrete mixture before undergoing glazing processes, making what was once a simple project into something much more complicated.
Concrete doors may look sleek and stylish at first glance, but what makes them different from other types of doors on the market is what comes in between their slab surfaces. They can help improve insulation within a room, and they have another function somewhat out of the ordinary for what we would expect from a door: to help decrease the amount of sound that goes in and out.
This is done by adding a “sound-proofing layer” that absorbs what people hear on either side of the barrier, creating a quieter environment for both occupants.
Paper & Paperboard
Concrete paper may sound like an odd combination, but its properties make it what some describe as an eco-friendly material. Unlike wood pulp papers, concrete can be recycled indefinitely without causing harm to the environment by using only 5% of what was used to create it before.
The concrete paper also lasts longer than other types because it does not readily tear or burn. Its water-resistant components help increase what is already a very durable material.
Concrete pavements lead to fewer potholes and safer driving conditions, making it ideal for all types of weather and easier on car suspensions when driving along these roadways.
Regarding basements, what they are made up of is similar to what we have mentioned earlier: concrete slabs covered by a concrete mixture layer.
This helps protect them from any damage due to changes in temperature or moisture which can wear out what are typically considered very durable materials when used for these purposes.
Curved surfaces make them structurally sound, which is built to be able to hold heavy objects in place. What makes it work is the backer rod which acts as a filler that helps reduce the chances of concrete cracking anytime soon.
When it comes to curved concrete projects, improper sealing of joints and lack of backfilling could cause problems that will eventually cause your project to fail – something no one likes to happen with large-scale construction endeavours.
Bridges and Highways
Concrete is often used for building bridges and highways due to its strength and ability to withstand heavy loads. It is used to create the decks, piers, and abutments of bridges, as well as the road surfaces of highways. Concrete roads and bridges have a longer lifespan than asphalt roads, which require more maintenance.
Dams and Canals
Concrete is commonly used to construct large structures such as dams and canals. It is strong enough to withstand the weight and pressure of water and can be used to create spillways, walls, and other structures. Concrete dams and canals can also help control the flow of water, which can benefit irrigation and hydroelectric power generation.
Retaining walls are used to hold back soil and prevent erosion. Concrete is a popular material for building retaining walls because it is solid and durable. It can be used to create walls of various sizes and shapes and can be designed to withstand the pressure of soil and water.
Concrete can also be used for decorative purposes. It can be moulded into various shapes and textures and stained or stamped to create different designs. Concrete can be used to create sculptures, garden ornaments, and other decorative features.
What Are the Qualities of Concrete?
Concrete has several benefits, making it a popular choice for builders and designers. In this blog, we will explore some of the key benefits of concrete.
- Strength and Durability: One of the main benefits of concrete is its strength and durability. It is a hard, stone-like material that can withstand heavy loads and extreme weather conditions. Concrete structures have a long lifespan and require minimal maintenance, which makes them a cost-effective option in the long run.
- Fire Resistance: Concrete is a non-combustible material that is resistant to fire. This makes it a popular choice for buildings requiring high fire resistance, such as hospitals, schools, and high-rise buildings.
- Energy efficiency: Concrete has good thermal mass properties, so it can absorb and store heat. It can regulate the inside temperature of a building and reduce the need for heating and cooling systems. As a result, buildings made from concrete can be more energy-efficient than those made from other materials.
- Versatility: Concrete can be moulded into various shapes and sizes, making it versatile. It can create various structures, from simple walls to complex architectural features. It can also be stamped, stained, or painted to create different textures and colours.
- Sustainability: Concrete is a sustainable material made from natural and recycled materials. It can also be recycled and reused, which can help to reduce waste and environmental impact. In addition, concrete structures can be designed to be energy-efficient and reduce the carbon footprint of a building.
- Cost-Effective: Concrete is a cost-effective material that can be produced in large quantities. It is also readily available in most parts of the world, which makes it a popular choice for construction projects. Additionally, its strength and durability mean that it requires minimal maintenance, which can save money over the long term.