Contractors - FAQ's

About Consolidated Concrete

What Is Pervious Concrete?

Pervious concrete is concrete manufactured with zero fine aggregate. It allows water to pass through the concrete which eliminates storm water run-off. Pervious concrete pavement is a unique and effective means to address important environmental issues and support sustainable growth. By capturing stormwater and allowing it to seep into the ground, porous concrete is instrumental in recharging groundwater, reducing stormwater runoff, and meeting EPA stormwater regulations.

What is proper curing and why is it important for quality concrete?

Curing is the procedure for maintaining an acceptable moisture content and temperature profile in the concrete to ensure desired properties of the concrete are achieved. Testing demonstrates improper or lack of curing can cut the strength of a proper concrete mix by as much as 50%. The potential for concrete shrinkage, cracking, and dusting increases significantly when concrete is not cured correctly.

How long must my concrete driveway cure before I can drive on it?

The American Concrete Institute and the American Concrete Pavement Association recommend a minimum of seven days following concrete placement before using a concrete driveway. Other concrete industry educational and technical societies recommend anywhere from three-to-seven days after placement, depending on anticipated driveway loading factors and the concrete mix design used.

Consult with your concrete contractor regarding when you can place your new driveway in service.

How should I cure my concrete?

We recommend that you cure your concrete with a liquid membrane curing compound. The curing process should begin immediately after final finishing. (Colored concrete may require curing compound that is approved for application) For more information see Curing In-Place Concrete. (CIP 11)

How should I prepare my sub-grade?

The sub-grade should be well compacted, uniform in depth, and well draining. Also, a fill of granular nature such as sand, rock or crushed base and dampen this base before placing concrete.

How far apart should I place my control joints?

We recommend that you place your control joints no more than 2 times in feet the thickness in inches of the slab. (4” slab 8’ joint spacing) These joints must be a minimum of ¼ the depth of the slab. (1” on 4” slab) Also, it is recommended that you attempt to design panels that are as square as possible. (Avoid exceeding 1.25 times square) For more information see Joints in Concrete Slabs on Grade. (CIP 6)

Should I use fibers in my concrete?

We recommend the use of fibers for reducing the possibility of plastic shrinkage cracks. Fibers are used only as secondary reinforcement. For more information see Synthetic Fibers for Concrete. (CIP 24)

How can I avoid concrete cracks?

There are many different types of concrete cracks. Proper joint layout is critical in flatwork. Pouring concrete with a low-slump is also very important. Cracks can also be caused from external restraint. (Pouring a footing and slab concurrently) Cracks can occur in between two immovable obstructions. If felt or foam is not used between a house and a block wall it is likely that a crack will develop. Crazing cracks (web cracking) often will develop when concrete is poured with a high slump and/or bleed water or water was introduced to the surface of the drying concrete before final set. For more information see Crazing Concrete Surfaces. (CIP 3)

How should I prepare for hot weather?

Concrete will set-up much quicker in hot weather. Ask our dispatchers to add a set retarder to your load. Make sure you have enough people on site to place the concrete quickly. It is recommended that the sub-grade is dampened before placement begins. For more information see Hot Weather Concreting. (CIP 12)

How should I prepare for cold weather?

We recommend that when the temperature drops you use a set accelerator in your mixes. Also, pouring your concrete with a low slump will help increase your set times. When concrete is poured on a cold sub-grade set times also tend to be increased.

What do I need to know about colored concrete?

Extra care must be taken when placing colored concrete. It is important that the slump remains consistent throughout each load. Also, as with any concrete, you never want to introduce water to the drying surface. For more information, please see our concrete color chart.

How do I avoid discoloration of my slab?

It is important not to over use a steel trowel while finishing. This has an effect that "burns" the surface of the concrete and seals in moisture. (Trapped) Also, you do not want to introduce any steel onto the wet concrete until after all of the bleed water has disappeared. Avoid using calcium chloride for flatwork. For more information see Discoloration. (CIP 23)

How do I repair discoloration?

Discoloration is difficult to fix. However, the earlier you treat the surface the more effective it will be. Scrub white vinegar onto the dampened slab and hose off the surface before the vinegar dries. Vinegar is slightly acidic and will often open up the pores of the concrete and allow it to breath. Discoloration caused by calcium chloride will not be affected by this procedure.

How do I order concrete?

Concrete is ordered by volume, expressed in cubic yards required to completely fill project forms. To avoid potential scheduling conflicts, ordering ready-mixed concrete from Consolidated Concrete must be done by calling Consolidated Concrete. For contact information, see the Contact Us page.

Before you call, measure your project and create a scale drawing, including the actual dimensions. Be prepared to share the following information with us:

When can I get concrete?

Normal delivery hours are Monday through Friday, 7:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., and Saturdays, 7:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. during construction season (April 1-December 15), 7:00 a.m. to noon during the off-season. Saturday hours are seasonal in nature and subject to the number of confirmed orders received. Holidays hours are determined on a case-by-case basis. Some flexibility in these hours is permitted in some cases with advance notice.

Is advance notice needed?

Advance notice is strongly recommended to permit scheduling of vehicles needed to deliver the concrete to the job site and to allow for batching, loading, and mixing times prior to departure for the job site. A 24-hour window is a reasonable time frame during the construction season.

Is there a cancellation policy?

Orders may be cancelled, for weather related reasons only, a minimum of two hours prior to scheduled delivery time.

How much does conrete cost?

The base cost is dependent on the type of mix design used for the particular project application involved. Additional costs for minimum loads, waiting times, and sales tax will also be included in the total charge. The customer service rep will provide cost information, based on your specific project situation.

What is a minimum load charge?

For loads of less than seven (7) yards, there are minimum load charges, which vary, depending on quantity of concrete ordered and the distance from the ready-mix plant to your project site. The customer service rep will provide minimum load charge cost information, based on your specific project situation.

What payment options are available?

Payment is due at the time of delivery (COD). COD payment may be made by cash or credit card. Credit cards need to be verified by the dispatch office before Consolidated Concrete will ship your order.

How big and how heavy is the ready-mix truck?

The empty weight of a Consolidated Concrete transit mixer with typical levels of fuel and water is around 36,000 pounds, and will double in weight with a full 10-yard concrete load. The height of our vehicles can be up to 14 feet; the width of our vehicles is 9.6-feet, mirror to mirror.

How far do the concrete chutes reach?

The chute systems on Consolidated Concrete vehicles typically reach up to 18 feet.

Do I need a concrete pump or conveyor?

For most homeowner concrete projects, the truck chutes and/or use of a wheelbarrow or concrete buggy will be sufficient for unloading and placing the concrete. The need for a concrete conveyor or concrete pump will be dictated by your particular job site circumstances. There is a separate charge for these types of material-placement services. Consolidated Concrete works with the best concrete pumping/conveyor service contractors and is happy to provide recommendations and contact information for you.

How much time do I have to unload the truck?

Concrete is a perishable product, and most specifications require it be discharged on the job site within 90 minutes or 300 revolutions of the truck barrel, after the addition of water to the concrete mix at the batch plant. Allowable unloading time at the job site is 10 minutes per yard. Thus, an 8-cubic yard load of concrete would be expected to be unloaded in 80 minutes or less. Charges in excess of allowable times are $80 per hour.

What finish should be used for a sidewalk, patio, or driveway?

Brooming of the concrete surface provides a safe, attractive, non-slip surface for exterior concrete flatwork. Broom finishes are created by pulling a special dampened, stiff-bristle concrete texturing broom across freshly floated concrete, and can be applied in many ways, including straight, curved, and wavy lines.

Most broom finishes for concrete sidewalks and driveways are straight-line textures broomed at right angles to the anticipated traffic direction. Broom finishes are not incorporated into most decorative concrete finishes.

What is concrete sealer and how often must it be applied?

While a curing compound acts to prevent moisture from leaving the concrete during initial stages of strength development, a concrete sealer is designed to prevent moisture from entering the concrete matrix, to assist in limiting surface deterioration due to cycles of freezing and thawing. New concrete should air dry for 30 days prior to the application of a concrete sealer. Follow the manufacturer’s directions for application rates and intervals. Many sealer applications are effective for a two-year period. For more information, please see our Acryl Pen product data sheet and Acryl Pen color chart.

Does my concrete come with a warranty?

Consolidated Concrete stands behind its quality products and warrants its concrete shall be free from manufacturing defect at time of delivery.

For every project it supplies, Consolidated Concrete shall secure satisfactory materials, combine them in proper proportions, mix them into a homogeneous product, and deliver the mixture to the job site in a safe and timely manner. Materials will meet the requirements of their respective specifications.

In the absence of a project specification, ASTM C-94, Standard Specification for Ready-Mixed Concrete, will prevail.

Consolidated Concrete is not responsible for site work and subgrade preparation, movement of the concrete into the forms, placement and consolidation, finishing operations, and adequate protection and curing to assure that the newly-placed concrete achieves its quality potential.

Nor is Consolidated Concrete responsible for ordering the proper concrete mix, though our customer service reps and technical personnel welcome the opportunity to work with customers and provide proven performance-mix options, based on the specific project application.

 

For additional information, please see our Terms and Conditions of Sale, Exterior Concrete Guidelines, and Concrete In Practice publications.