Just as there are challenges when pouring concrete in cold weather, contractors have to overcome obstacles in hot weather. Pouring concrete for a driveway, walkway, floor, wall, countertop, or any other surface takes both art and science. Therefore, it is essential that you work with a reputable company that uses only the best products available and has experience working in hot conditions.
Overcoming Obstacles for Hot Weather Concrete Pouring
To ensure the full control of set times, cracks, or shrinkage, your contractor will follow a very specific process. For example, hot weather often impacts the set time. The concrete will slag or ash slower as temperatures rise. When admixtures are used as a way of controlling the set, as well as slump, the problem is solved without compromising the quality of the concrete or changing its color.
When pouring concrete in hot weather, setting occurs as the concrete hydrates. Therefore, the primary issue is not the strength or set time but instead the actual temperature of the concrete itself. With hot temperatures, concrete sucks up water and then grows crystals around aggregate particles. Ultimately, the crystals will grow fast without having the adequate time to strengthen. If the temperature of the concrete is 18 degrees higher than normal, there will be a 10 percent reduction in compressive strength.
After the concrete begins to set, there will be a rapid slump. When this happens, additional water is required. Not only is slump something that can reduce the strength of the concrete, it can change the integral color. Typically, this causes significant variations in water content, leading to noted color differences.
For these and other hot weather-related issues, there are viable solutions. Your contractor can pour the concrete during the early-morning or late-evening hours when temperatures are cooler. Because concrete heats up while sitting in the truck or from friction associated with mixing, it is important for your contractor and other workers to move quickly.
To reflect heat away from the concrete, a white pigmented curing compound can be used. It is also possible to utilize curing blankets, which help reflect the sun and cool the concrete’s temperature. When dealing with slump, a high-range water reducer is beneficial. For interior slabs, the goal is to keep the sun off the concrete. In fact, any equipment and/or tools used for pouring concrete should have limited exposure to the sun since they can affect the concrete’s temperature.