Pouring Concrete During the Cold Weather

couple in the rain

Pouring concrete during the cold season will have some setbacks for your projects especially when the temperatures are close to below freezing. During the months of November, December, January and February, prepare for careful planning and execution in order to set the concrete just fine.

SEE ALSO: Protect Your Pavement From the Winter!

What You Need to Consider When Pouring Concrete

  1. Always schedule to pour the concrete ahead of time. For some contractors like us, we plan on at least 2-3 days in advanced depending on the weather. Sometimes, delaying can be inevitable if the weather is not cooperating well.
  2. Wear the right clothing. This sounds plain and simple, right? Believe it or not, layering is very important in our business specially when the temperature gets really cold. The good part about layering is that you can always remove a layer when you start to warm up. Comfort is one of the key to successful concrete work.
  3. Check the sub-base. Never fail to check on the sub-base for ice before you pour the concrete. When the sub-base contains any frost, do not pour the concrete until everything has thawed. If poured before thawing, it whole thing will crack.
  4. Use an accelerator. Whatever temperature you’re in, the concrete will dry if you use the right mixture with the help of an accelerator and hot water. The process usually takes about 2-5 hours before troweling takes place, but the it will certainly dry on its own.
  5. Have heaters available at all times. Of course, with the cold weather amongst your employees, it’s hard to focus when the cold winds start to blow. Always have a heating system available in case someone needs to warm up.
  6. Cover the setting! When the concrete is troweled smoothly, the next part is to ultimately protect the concrete from freezing. One way  to protect it is by covering it with insulation blankets and having a tarp over it. Add many lumber to the tarp to prevent it from getting blown away!