How to Pour a Perfect Concrete Slab

How to Pour a Perfect Concrete Slab

Having a concrete Birmingham driveway that leads up to your house is a great way to transition from the outside world and back to your sanctuary; your home. When not built properly, a concrete driveway can make for a bumpy ride and will start to disintegrate shortly after installation.

The good news is that you don’t have to spend extra time or money in order to have a perfect concrete slab.

Here are some tips from an experienced mason on how to pour a concrete slab correctly, while avoiding the formation of hideous cracks, scales etc.

Protect Adjoining Concrete

The odd splash is unavoidable when you’re pouring foundation repair Birmingham AL. That’s why you have to protect any adjacent concrete, doors, windows, brick, and siding with a plastic sheet before you start.

Dampen the Base

It’s important to dampen the ground that you’ll be working from with water in order to extend your finish time, especially if you’re working in a hot climate. Slowing down the curing process will help you to create a much stronger and long-lasting slab.

How to Order

To find out how much Birmingham foundation you need to order, simply multiply the number of feet with the depth and divide the answer by the number 27, which is the number of cubic feet in a cubic yard. Add 10% to your answer to make room for the odd variation in the slab depth and inevitable spillage.

Hand Signals

Get familiar with the hand signals required to direct the truck driver so that he can get the chute in a convenient position for you to work with. Essentially, you’ll have to learn four basic hand signals, which are; Back Up the Truck/ Stop the Truck/ Start Pouring/ Stop Pouring.

Start with Small Sections

To spread the concrete evenly, ask the truck driver to slowly accelerate the vehicle as you move the chute back and forth. When the driver reaches the end of a particular section, you can then add a little bit more using a concrete rake. However, avoid filling the entire form because it’ll be difficult to drag back the additional concrete.

Be Prepared

You’ll do well to get your tools ready before you start pouring, and you’ll need at least three people to help you with screed and edging. Keep in mind that all of this has to be done quickly before the concrete sets so you need to be prepared beforehand.

Keep Rebar in the Center

Place your rebar on chairs to keep it at the correct height. Also, make sure that it’s at the center of the slab and not near the surface or the ground.

Crown Side Up

To ensure that the slab won’t retain water, create a small crown on the screed board which should face upwards.

Push the Rocks Down

Push the chunks of gravel down and away from the surface because if you leave them, you’ll end up with unsightly chipping. For the best results, use your float to gently stab the slab right after you’ve poured the concrete. It would be near impossible to do this once the concrete has started setting.

Clean Your Tools

It’ll be difficult to remove the Birmingham concrete when it’s all dry and caked up.

Additional Tips

Don’t over-trowel the concrete.

Wait until the concrete is firm and then use your edger to make long strokes.

Keep a hand float nearby while edging, as you may need to use it for filling in dry spots along the edges.

Use a broom to create traction so that the slab isn’t slippery.

To make sure that you end up with a super strong concrete slab, spray it with water every day during the first week.

Put caution tape around your slab for the first week to prevent small kids and pets from walking on it, and avoid driving on it for at least 10 days.