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The harsh cold and winds of winter have an impact on just about everything, including concrete. During the winter, it can be especially challenging to pour concrete. If you are planning to embark on a project during this time of the year, make sure you know what you could potentially be up against so you can avoid making some of the common mistakes.
If you've ever mixed concrete before, you likely recognized that it has a high water content. During the winter, when the temperature drops too low, what does water do? It freezes. When the water freezes, the entire concrete mixture will as well, stalling your project.
Although you can't control the temperatures, you can lower the likelihood of this issue happening by not premixing your concrete solution. Try not to mix it until you are ready to use it immediately. The longer it sits, the lower the water temperature falls, and the more likely it is to freeze. Additionally, you can use hot water for the mixture instead of room temperature water.
Use Insulating Blankets
If you have to transport already mixed concrete to a work site or if you need to slowly pump the concrete, it's smart to use an insulating blanket. If your set-up has a barrel, you can wrap the blanket around it, but if it has a boom pipeline, it is best to wrap it around this area.
The insulation blanket helps maintain the temperature of the mixture, which can keep it from freezing. It's best to install the blankets beforehand. If you wait until the concrete pump is outside, the cold will have a chance to set in and alter the temperature of the mixture. In this case, the insulating blanket will be useless.
Don't Stop Pumping
Once you start the pumping process, it's important that you not stop until you have completed the entire process. If you stop pumping in the middle of the job, any mixture left over in the line pump can freeze. As the concrete freezes, it expands and presses into the walls of the line pump.
This pressure can cause a slight curve in the line. A curve in the line that makes it harder for any new concrete to pump through, which can create a blockage. To prevent this scenario, don't start pumping until you've fully assessed the site.
Winter weather can create challenges when it comes to concrete pumping. However, being aware of these challenges allows you to pre-plan and overcome these issues.
For more tips on pumping concrete successfully in cold temperatures, talk to a company like Masterlink Concrete Pumping.Share