Prep for Crack-Free Concrete

A ground that will on regular occasion receive the presence of heavy-duty truck or vehicle generally needs a functional and well constructed concrete floor.  Careful and proper ground prep will let it look healthy and last forever. Here is a good explanation of how to prepare your site for a pour.

Good base

A solid concrete needs an excellent base to avoid cracking, considering the required 4 to 6 rule of thumb, the size of your driveway is essential and this depends on the condition or the nature of the existing soil, the climatic condition of the ground, and the kind of automobile you would like to put on the driveway. There are different ways to go about it for example if the land has a sandy or gravelly soil you may choose to pour your concrete directly on it without the need for a base but if the weather condition of that environment is a cold one. Automatically there is a need to have a base layer of not le than 10 or 12 inches as against the average 4 to 6 inches.

Most of the times, engineers do contact the nearest cement supplier in the area whenever they want to work so they can be sure of the kind of base to use, they use to be the one to recommend a proper base depth and the nearest base supplier to use.

Compacting the base layer

It’s the next stage after having or laying a good base, this stage requires that you have up to four bases with a plate compactor. At each base, add a plate compactor while the base is at 2 inches. Each of the layers you add is called a lift, the best vibrator that gives perfect result is smart lift, not the common ones that use to jump around. The jump around type is usually called rammer or jumping jack; they are designed mainly to compact soil when backfilling trenches and not meant for compacting base.

Base dampening    

If soil is too dry, there is a high tendency that it won’t compact well. In this wise, if you are looking to construct your base on this kind of soil, try to add a little moisture using the lift attached to a garden hose so you can achieve maximum compaction. Ensure your base have enough moisture by packing a little sand and feeling it. If it’s able to fold into a mold like a ball, it means you have done enough watering, if not you will need to add more water until you are good to go. Adding water does not mean you should overspray it because too much water can cause a delay. The reason why you are adding water to each lift is all to make the ground compatible and reduce dust.



Align the forms

By aligning the structures, we mean that you should stretch a string that will connect two screws installed on the forms. The strings will help keep the form straight, be careful, and make sure you set the form at a proper height before you think of bringing in the last lift. A Standard concrete slab must have a minimum slope of 1/8 inches per roof to prevent water from pooling.

Safeguard the form

Use your foot to hold the board to the string while you place a stake at every three feet; try to adjust the stake while you flush it to the board to prevent the form from pulling out of alignment while you try to fasten it. Make sure you backfill the form you pour concrete, it will help keep the form in good shape for concrete. Here a lubricant is needed to prevent concrete from sticking to the form, the best kind of oil you can use is new or old motor oil.

Screw the stakes

Join the stakes to the forms with screws not nails, because nails can loosen the stakes and make everything go out of alignment. Try not to install the screw low from the board so they will not be difficult to remove and try to be sure the screws are not in the pour area.

Chop off the extended stakes 

Cut off the extended part of the stake from the board so that they will not be a disturbance to the screeding when it is time to pour. Avoid using a concrete saw because it can easily rattle the alignment, and ensure you knock down the grade close to the forms. 


Reinforce the rebar

The standard inches for rebar is half an inch, of rebar in a 2ft grid pattern when pouring for a driveway, try to tie the rebar together with pre-cut and fastened it with a tie-wire twister. Use enough rope to tie the grid together so that it will still be firm in case someone mistakenly steps on it.

Chop of the rebar with a grinder

The right tool to cut off your rebar is a grinder, use the one that has an abrasive metal-cutting blade, most engineers use it for their job anytime they need to cut the rebar.




Bend rebar to corners

You can bend your rebar with a hand bending tool available at most engineering companies for $30; it is essential that you stand on the rebar pulling it into shape at 1/2 inches size.

Join the rebar with the slabs

As you try to join two concrete slabs together, make sure you connect with at least two rebars so that they will all be at a straight line. Try to drill a hole as deep as you can so that the rebar can fit into it, but if you are working in a cold climatic condition, don’t tie a floating slab as there are possibilities that it can cause a crack at the joint where the two are connected.  


Set the rebar on chairs 

Do your rebar done on a chair; the reason is that most rebar done on the ground mostly don’t do any good. Make sure you give space among chairs you want to use for rebar so it can sit levels. Try to make sure you don’t disorganize your form while you try to pour concrete into your form with a wheelbarrow.