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The Benefits of Using Concrete


Concrete is a widely used construction material that offers significant cost savings over other building materials. It’s durable and has an attractive appearance, so concrete structures attract excellent interest from potential buyers. There are many factors that make concrete construction highly cost-effective for builders. For starters, the material’s production cost is relatively low, and it is easily found across the globe, unlike other materials such as polymer and steel.

Besides that, it comprises raw materials like cement, water, and other aggregates readily available in most markets. Apart from its accessibility and low cost of raw materials, concrete is cheaper because it offers more durability and resilience.

We know what you’re thinking; how does that matter? First, high durability leads to lower maintenance costs and insurance costs than fragile and combustible building materials, which means that builders using concrete for construction will burn a smaller hole in their pockets for these expenses.

It Offers Immense Strength and Durability

When seeking the ideal construction material, strength and durability are the primary requirements to keep the structure standing for years. Considering this point, concrete is a reliable option for most builders.

Concrete can be used in various applications in the construction sector, attributing to its strength. Whether a builder wants to build residential, commercial, or industrial projects, concrete structures can stand the test of time.

Hardens Easily

Let’s face it–concrete is not the most glamorous of materials to work with. But the truth is, concrete is really easy to work with. There are no ‘ideal temperatures’ involved when setting and hardening concrete. It simply hardens and gains strength at ambient room temperature. That’s because it is naturally a low-temperature bonded inorganic material. So regardless of the weather conditions, it is possible to construct using concrete without delaying any projects.

In addition, builders don’t have to optimize the temperature on the construction site, leading to less hassle and expenses during the entire process. However, in the case of extreme weather conditions, concrete can be mixed with other components to help it set and harden without any problems. But, such intervention is hardly ever required unless in the case of extreme situations.

Hardens Easily

Concrete is one of the most versatile materials around, and with its easy-to-work-with nature, it has countless applications in construction, road works, and more. A combination of cement, sand, and gravel, concrete in its liquid state can be molded into any shape or structure desired by simply pouring the mixture into a mold. It’s also available in different textures, allowing it to be used for multiple purposes, such as creating a smooth or textured surface.

Low Energy Consumption During Production

When it comes to production, concrete requires way less energy during production than steel. For example, plain cement concrete requires only 450-750 kWh/ton of energy, while reinforced concrete needs around 800-3200 kWh/ton.

On the other hand, structural steel may require more than 8000 kWh/ton, consuming ten times more energy than concrete. Offering almost the same durability, concrete is a go-to option for those intending to conserve energy and reduce their carbon footprint.

Additionally, it also decreases the overall cost for production and construction, which provides a double bottom line benefit for builders.

Impeccable Water Resistance

Although concrete structures face the same risks from water as wood and steel, it is more durable than those materials. Concrete is made from sand, gravel, and cement powder mixed with water, which hardens into a solid composite material. With many applications in industrial settings and construction projects around the globe, concrete is one of the most popular building materials for its durability and processability to resist the corrosive properties of water.

Concrete can withstand plain water without any serious deterioration, and this makes it ideal for constructing utility structures like dams, canals, and pipelines. Moreover, it can also be used for underwater and waterfront structures that will only be exposed to pure water.

But, builders should keep chemicals such as sulfates, chlorides, and carbon dioxide in mind as they can cause corrosion in concrete when seeped in through the water.

Temperature Resistance

Concrete is an inorganic compound made of components that help withstand high temperatures without losing its strength and efficiency. The primary binder in concrete, calcium silicate hydrate, helps it endure hate up to 910 degrees centigrade.

Compared to steel and wood, the material is quite fire-resistant. It stores heat from the environment while withstanding against it for around 6 hours. So, in case of a fire, it can allow sufficient time for rescue operations to arrive.

Moreover, the material is also great for fireproofing other materials like steel to be used in high-temperature applications easily.

Consumes and Recycles Waste Products

Industrial and recyclable wastes can substitute aggregate materials in concrete. So, concrete can help reuse and recycle these products and conserve the environment.

These materials include fly ash, slag, waste glass, and ground vehicle tires. Using this industrial waste, concrete can become the answer for reducing the overall carbon footprint and promoting sustainable construction for builders. The best part is that most of these materials help enhance the properties of concrete without weakening it in any way, which means that the quality of the structure built with such materials won’t be compromised.

Zero Maintenance

Concrete is a relatively quick, inexpensive, and long-lasting material. It can be used to construct commercial structures or residential homes or commercial and residential furnishings. You name it. Concrete has been in use for years now, and owing to the fact that it does not need any maintenance to protect it from the elements, makes it one of the most desirable construction materials. This has made it possible for homeowners or business owners to save on costly maintenance that comes with painting, coating, or working with other natural materials like wood.

Multiple Application Techniques

Concrete can be applied using various methods for construction. This makes it an accessible solution for almost any construction and reinforcement work. Apart from being poured and hand-applied, it can also be sprayed, pumped, and grouted. Additionally, concrete is also applied as shotcrete through an advanced technique that saves time and effort in constructing tunnels and other complex structures.

It is Eco-Friendly

Today, sustainable materials are needed for construction to reduce the overall carbon footprint and reduce the waste of raw materials. Unlike other materials such as wood and steel, concrete can help achieve both clauses. As mentioned before, it is quickly produced locally in most cities worldwide, reducing its transportation time. This makes it an excellent option for construction companies working with a triple bottom line approach, contributing to the environment through their business.

Moreover, once cured, it does not emit any type of toxic gases that might adversely impact the environment. These include substances like toxic compounds and volatile organic compounds. Furthermore, this keeps it from producing harmful substances like mildew that spoil indoor air quality. Also, it keeps out airborne pollutants like pollen and dust.

Most importantly, concrete can be easily recycled. Even after the building is demolished, the concrete can be crushed to produce aggregate. This can later be used as a sub-base for buildings and reinforce shorelines.

Helps Conserve Energy

Concrete is one of the most energy-efficient construction materials you can use. Unlike other materials, it can regulate both heat and cold within a structure. This means that less energy is needed to maintain comfortable temperatures—a big money-saver for builders. Concrete is also used for various heating and cooling systems such as geothermal systems, hydronic systems, and radiant floors.

Ideal for Coastal Construction

One of the primary reasons behind using concrete for coastal structures is that it does not corrode in humid conditions and generally can withstand moist air. This resistance towards corrosion makes it advantageous for use in coastal regions as well as on seashores. Additionally, highly robust concrete variants such as fiber-reinforced concrete are used in flood protection structures in coastal cities.

Does Not Reflect Light

Since concrete is gray, neutral hues might seem boring and monotonous. But it is a suitable material to ensure safety and reliability when constructing roads and runways. Concrete does not reflect light, unlike asphalt and other building materials. This means that pilots and drivers don’t have to navigate through reflections to interpret their routes correctly while driving on concrete roads.

Reduces External Noise

Concrete has impeccable soundproofing properties that make it the right choice for most residential and industrial projects. It can keep out external noise and make buildings relatively quieter compared to wood and steel. So, buildings made out of concrete are more comfortable and noise-free for their residents.

Concrete is a superior building material as opposed to its alternatives. It provides a range of benefits over other options, making it a go-to solution for most construction projects. However, depending on the nature of the structure, the ideal material may vary. Builders consider these pros and cons when choosing the suitable material for their structure, based on its location, environment, client requirements, and budget.

If you happen to need some recommendations and suggestions on the best concrete for you, please feel free to give us a call or visit our website!

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