Concrete slabs are an important structural element of any building. Builders construct concrete slabs to createfunctional, flat surfaces. A concrete slab is usually several inches thick and can be supported by walls, columns, beams, or the ground. The primary function of the concrete slab is to transfer the load by bending in one or two directions. The slab must be laid correctly to avoid incidences like blisters, cracking, curling, and surface scaling. Below is a description of how you can lay a slab correctly for durable construction.
Measure from the lot line to enhance accurate positioning of the concrete slab. Fix four stakes at the corners of the slab so that you can remember where the slab will be placed. Use a line level and string to see how much or little the ground slopes. This measurement will enable you to have a level base for laying the slabs.
An unlevel base can cause cracks or destroy the whole structure. To level the soil, you can move the soil to the lower end or dig out the higher side. It is also crucial that you know your soil. Sandy soil has no risk of cracking due to water content in the surrounding ground. Other soils, like clay and loam, needaround seven to eight inches of compacted gravel beneath the concrete.
Constructing Strong and Level Foundations to Install Concrete Slabs
Choosing boards is the next step. The board size should match the size of the site.If they are not long enough, merging them is an option. Merging can be done using a cleat over the joint.Before applying the cleat, ensure that they are aligned. Also, use solid bracing so that the concrete does not push the boards out of place. Set the boards and ensure that they are straight. Drive the kickers into the ground at an angle and nail the top of kickers to the stakes. Next to the first one, place the third form board. Ensure the fill is hauled and tamped before placing the fourth side. To achieve a perfect levelling of the form boards, let one of them be higher when you hammer it to the stake.
Build and Pack the Base
The base should be able to drain to prevent cracking effectively. Measure the top of the forms to the ground using some string to know how much fill you will require. Do this more than once to be sure. After getting the estimate, place your fill and spread it, ensuring it does not exceed three inches.Tamp all layers well.
Slab Reinforcement with Steel Bars
Steel bars can be used to reinforce your slab for a solid and durable site. However, using still bars is a very labour-intensive task, which may require professionals. Hire experts will ensure your reinforcement is well done. You can also do it by yourself with steel bars, wires, and wire twisting tools.
Prepare for the Concrete Truck
Everything should be ready when the truck delivering your premixed concrete arrives. Concrete forms should be prepared and able to withstand the concrete. Call the contractor a day earlier to get helpful advice and ensure you have the right concrete estimates to avoid inconveniences.
Pouring Concrete and Applying a Smooth Finish
Place the concrete in its final spot. When the concrete has been entirely placed, smooth it and screed it. Use the bull float to completely smooth and remove any marks from the screed. Pass the bull float over until water is drawn to the surface. Allow it to harden, and then groove it depending on how big your slabs are. Use a floating iron to get rid of any imperfections. Allow the concrete to cure and keep it moist.
Laying a concrete slab is a critical stage of your construction. It is vitalthat you follow the best practices throughout the stages of concrete slab construction. Engage a qualified concrete supplier to ensure you are using top-quality premixed concrete and to help you with concrete estimations.