Under Construction? 5 Methods for Evaluating Concrete Strength

Concrete is used extensively in the building trade; often as the foundations for buildings and even as the entire structure. small business cement pouringIf your small business is undertaking a construction project, this article will help you know that the mixture is right. A poor or weak mixture is likely to remain soft while too strong and you’ll find that the concrete dries out and cracks easily.

This is why you need to have your concrete inspected regularly. One of the best methods is a corrosion control inspections which ensures the concrete is still performing as well as it should.

There are 5 key methods for on-site evaluation of your concrete strength:

  1. Compression Test

This is a very reliable test but it does damage the integrity of your concrete. You’ll need to select the location to test carefully; it will need to be repaired afterwards.

The surface is literally cut and a small piece removed to be compression tested. The procedure is fast and precise.

  1. The Pull Out

An alternative is making sure that a bolt or some type of fixing is embedded into the edge of the concrete.

You can then attach a wire to it and a measure before applying force to remove the bolt. The machine should apply the force for you to ensure it is done gradually and the reading is precise.

The amount f force taken to remove the bolt indicates the strength of the concrete. This is an easy test to do and it’s accurate. But you may damage your concrete again.

  1. Ultrasonic

This is a great way of testing the concrete without damaging it. However, it is not always effective as it will pick up flaws in the concrete such as voids and cracks. This will negatively influence the results.

The method works by sending ultrasonic waves into the concrete and then measuring the time it takes for these waves to move through the concrete. This will tell you the density of the concrete and therefore its strength.

Ultrasonic is increasing being used to test strength and locate other issues with the invisible parts of your concrete structure.

  1. Rebound Hammer

A special hammer with a spring and measuring equipment is used to hit your concrete. The force of the rebound will tell you how strong or hard the surface of the concrete is.

This is a very popular test as it can be used in the field in seconds. You can also easily test multiple areas of the concrete. However, it does not register how strong the concrete is under the surface which could be an issue.

  1. Combination

This is the preferred approach if you have the time and equipment available. Basically it means using several or all of the other methods described.

This approach will damage your concrete but it will also give you the most accurate picture of its strength; which could be vital in most concrete applications.

Knowing the methods will help you to prepare better for the tests; even if you have no control over which one is used.

About Jesse Hughes

Jesse Hughes is a writer and blogger at KDA Incorporated.