7 unsung heroes of concrete construction

As a Calgary Concrete Construction Company, we work with many variables when prepping concrete jobs. A successful job always is dependent on many factors, which I will talk about below, some if not all of these methods are used in most of our jobs.

This page has no finish pictures of Stamped Concrete, Decorative Concrete or anything for a photo album, if you are looking for beautiful job photos, please check out our galleries. This is about everything that comes before those final job completion photos, so sit back, hold on to something and let us talk about the unsung heroes of concrete construction.


Grading the concrete slab subbase before you start concrete construction is key. If the subbase is graded the wrong way, for example toward the house, then when water drains through the gravel base, as it will, it will follow the slope of the subbase. This can channel water to your concrete foundation walls; the water can run down your walls causing possible flooding in your basement, or at the very least a lot of extra work for your sump pump. Not good and avoidable, So the first step before a concrete contractor starts to gravel is to make sure the subbase is graded away from your house or at least level.


Next up, concrete brackets. Concrete Construction requires Concrete brackets when there is concern about settling along a recently excavated foundations or say a step that you want to make sure stay exactly where it was poured, and a concrete bracket will ensure this. Concrete brackets come in a wide range of sizes, typically ranging in size from a large toddler to a small giraffe, or 3 feet to 10 feet long, and are made from steel angle iron. The brackets are mounted to concrete foundation walls with concrete inserts, we prefer these over bolt through fasteners, as a bolt through fasteners require a hole through your foundation giving a possible path for water and bugs to come into your house. Concrete brackets are often used on new homes where concrete patios, concrete walkways and concrete steps are poured over new backfilled soil material.


Support for concrete slabs and structures further away from the house or building foundations are good candidates for concrete piles for support. Concrete piles for residential concrete usually go to 4 to 6 feet normally dependent on the auger length. Concrete Piles for Concrete construction are best installed 8 feet or more away from newly backfilled foundations. If concrete piles are needed closer than 8 feet to a newly backfilled foundations then we recommend steel screw piles, cause concrete piles poured on unsettled ground are as useless as a… ( your own funny comment goes here ) because they surely will settle on the soil they are poured on which will result in the structure above it sinking with the pile, basically a disaster.


Helical Steel piles are the sophisticated older brother of concrete piles. Steel screw piles go to deeper depths than concrete piles. This is accomplished by adding steel pipe extensions to the screw pile as it is screwed into the ground. The concrete screw piles become harder and harder to turn and push into the ground as torque and psi increases when the screw pile reaches the specified psi, it is cut, and a steel cap is put on at the desired grade. Screw piles are used for a wide range of concrete construction support, usually when conventional concrete piles are not ideal. Screw piles are commonly triple
the price of concrete piles.


Some of our Residential Work and much of our commercial concrete contracting has engineered rebar. Engineered rebar is typically required when there are extreme weight and pressure on the concrete. A rebar cage can make grade beams and structural slabs much stronger and less likely to crack and perform better than convention 2 top and two bottom type typical rebar specs. If you have a situation where your concrete project may have special rebar requirements we can have the rebar engineered for everyone’s peace of mind.the price of concrete piles.


Concrete footings and concrete grade beams are another way to support structures above whether concrete or otherwise when the conventional slabs will not support the above weight. After excavation the footing and grade beams are typically the first things we pour, then they are backfilled and forgotten about, kind of an unsung hero in my book and finally the finished concrete is poured on top of it and takes all the glory but without the concrete footing or concrete grade beam the slab would not fair well. Our concrete footing and grade beams are made from sulphate resistant type 50 concrete when required with 15mm rebar commonly. Diversified concrete as a leading Calgary concrete contractor has poured over 1000s of footing and grade beams in our 20 years plus. Contact us today for more information on how grade beams and footings can be used to make your concrete project more stable and last longer when a typical slabs bearing weight is not acceptable.


Lastly, one of the easiest and highly effective ways to bring longevity and additional support to you concrete flatwork is simply thickened parts of the concrete, in a way forming monolithic grade beams. This is usually required when the slab will span unstable or settling ground or when there is additional weight to rest on the slab, a point load. Slab thickening is another way to add structural support to your concrete project and because additional pours are not required it is the most cost-effective way to give add structural value to an otherwise ordinary slab on grade.

Diversified Concrete Calgary has done custom concrete contracting jobs for over 20 years and is the go-to concrete contractors for custom builders and high-end residential concrete and commercial concrete projects. Contact us today and let us build your concrete project better with our knowledgeable crews.

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