Pouring Concrete in the Cold

Posted on: January 20th, 2018 by Lori Smith
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Can You Pour a Foundation or Slab in the Winter

There are safe and effective ways to manage concrete in the winter. If you are pouring concrete in the cold, you have to plan ahead.

Pouring Concrete in the Cold

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It is critical to protect the ground beneath the foundation or slab from frost, snow, and ice.  Start by covering the area before the cold weather hits with hay or some sort of plastic sheet or tarp.

You can also purchase blankets specifically made for concrete curing, which professional foundation companies invest in, which can be beneficial before, during, and after pouring concrete in the winter.

There is a limit for how frigid it can be to start building a home, and this post gives more info:

In the case of placing concrete, when we say “cold weather” we are referring to a period of time when the average daily temperature falls below 40ºF for more than three consecutive days. These conditions call for special provisions when placing, curing, and protecting concrete against the effects of cold weather. In its plastic state (as a malleable liquid), concrete will freeze if its temperature falls below 25ºF. If plastic concrete freezes, its potential strength can be reduced by more than 50% and its durability will suffer accordingly. Concrete should be protected from freezing until it reaches a minimum compressive strength of 500 psi, which is equivalent to about two days after placement for most concrete maintained at 50ºF.
Pouring Concrete in Cold Weather – Yes, it Can Be Done!

There are mixture ratios of concrete that work better in colder environments. According to the American Concrete Institute (ACI), to be able to survive multiple freeze/thaw cycles, the concrete needs to be 3,500 psi or able to withstand at least 3,500 pounds per square inch.

To do this, there are a number of components that help such as a higher grade of cement and using a lower water to cement ratio. This video provides more advice on assuring your cement sets up well in the cold:


As with hiring any Denver roofer or construction contractor, you need to spend some time researching your options. Finding a reputable cement contractor will assure you receive quality work at a fair price.

Cost of Pouring Concrete

A big part of the project cost is having the concrete delivered to your location. Always read the contract thoroughly to be sure the price is fixed and ask the Denver contractor for references.

Here is a list of topics to consider when having cement work done:

General Guidelines for Choosing a Concrete Professional

-Talk to multiple contractors before you make your choice.
-Check references. Concrete professionals are just like any other home improvement contractor, and they should be able to provide you with at least three references. HomeAdvisor provides its own ratings and reviews to augment this conventional resource.
-Read contracts and warranties closely. Make sure estimates are comprehensive, and the cost of your project is fixed unless you decide to change the installation options.
-Never pay the balance upfront. Using a credit card can also help buffer you from paying for shoddy construction work.

Concrete Contractors – How to Hire, Costs & Alternatives

For the cost of concrete delivery, check out this Home Advisor graphic. You can enter your own zip code to get a better answer for your specific location.

 

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