Of course, it pays to know a few tips on speeding up concrete curing periods to maximize the gains that you can get out of using concrete forms. Below are some of the steps you can take to ensure minimum curing time for you concrete.
Before You Start
Several preemptive steps exist to help you speed up the concrete drying process. Each has its own applications, as well as its own set of pros and cons. Here are some that are worth considering:
- Find the right water- concrete balance – while lower water content may seem obvious, it doesn’t always guarantee faster drying times. Too much concrete can prevent water from getting to the surface.
- Saturate the aggregate before mixing – if you’re using lightweight concrete, you need to saturate the aggregate with water before adding the concrete.
- Add self-desiccation agents – self-desiccation material binds more water to concrete. Just don’t pour too much, as this may increase the risk of cracking or shrinking during or after curing.
- Add synthetic particles – as a substitute for lightweight aggregate, synthetic particles reduce drying time by preventing the concrete mix from absorbing too much water.
You can also implement fast-drying measures after the concrete mix has been poured into the forming systems. The key is to encourage concrete’s natural drying process, and dehumidification works in this regard. The building industry practices three common approaches to dehumidification. These are:
- Condensation dehumidification – is a curing process that involves the use of cooling-based dehumidifiers. These pieces of drying equipment cool the air around the concrete, effectively reducing the dew point so that moisture can be collected and drawn away.
- Heating dehumidification – in contrast to condensation dehumidification, heating dehumidification uses heated air to achieve the same results.
- Desiccant drying – is a process that employs desiccant-based dehumidifiers to remove moisture from the air. Hot air is then streamed onto the concrete surface to release the moisture from the desiccant and blow it away from the concrete.
Solutions for Speeding up Concrete Drying Time, LinkedIn.com