Concrete Services in Phoenix, AZ

Cactus Asphalt Can Show You How to Make Concrete

Cactus Asphalt has developed a reputation for being one of the Southwest’s leading paving companies. We have been offering concrete services for more than three decades and are committed to providing high-quality results from cost-effective projects. Our customers have come to expect innovative pavement maintenance and construction, and we are happy to deliver that. Regardless of your concrete needs, we are here to help. Our team of experts has extensive experience in concrete resurfacing, concrete repair, concrete leveling, concrete cutting, and much more. We can even explain the concrete-making process to you in seven easy steps. If you have a concrete project that you need to complete at your home or commercial property, call us today.

Seven Steps to Making Concrete

Before concrete can be used to create a sidewalk, foundation, patio, or other bases, it must be produced using a mix of elements that includes cement, water, and other materials like sand, gravel, or aggregate. Regardless of whether you need concrete for a small home project or commercial paving endeavor, the mixing process will be the same. The process is relatively simple but must be completed carefully and purposefully. Churning and mixing will keep concrete in a semi-fluid state, but it will begin to harden as soon as movement ceases. It is important to be ready to pour and set your concrete when this occurs. Prior to that, however, the seven steps to making concrete include:

Crush Limestone

The concrete-making process begins as soon as miners extract limestone and other materials from a quarry. Limestone serves as the foundational element of all commercial concrete. The initial step in making concrete involves crushing the limestone into pieces no larger than three inches in size. The simplest way to do this is by using a sledgehammer, but mechanical crushers and hammer mills can also do the trick.

Heat Limestone in Kiln

Once the limestone is broken into manageable pieces, it is heated in a kiln for three to four hours at 2,700 degrees Fahrenheit. This process helps burn off any impurities in the form of gases while also uniting the remaining elements to form a substance called clinker, which emerges from the kiln as gray balls roughly the size of marbles.

Break Pieces to Dust

After a cooling process that may take at least an hour or two, the clinker is ground into a fine dust that can then be mixed with other elements to create concrete for your driveway, foundation, or patio. Gypsum is also added during the grinding process.

Mix All-Purpose Sand and Cement

The first three steps create a cement mixture that must be mixed with all-purpose sand. This can be done using a wheelbarrow and a shovel. The ratio of sand to cement should be two-to-one. It is critical to make sure the elements are mixed thoroughly. A portable concrete mixer may be appropriate for the job if you need more than 80 pounds of concrete.

Add Gravel to Mixture

Once you have completely mixed the sand and cement, you must introduce gravel to the mixture. For every part of cement, you use, add four parts of gravel or crushed brick to the blend. The coarse material helps bind the concrete when it dries. For a smoother finish, use smaller pieces of gravel during this stage.

Slowly Add Water and Mix

Once all your ingredients have been mixed into a well-proportioned concoction, slowly pour water into the mixture. Use a hoe or a shovel to mix all the ingredients with water until it is stiff. If the concrete is still crumbly or dusty, you must add more water.

Wash Mixing Tools

Now that your concrete is ready to pour, you must be sure to rinse and wash your mixing tools thoroughly. Failure to do so will allow the concrete to harden to your equipment.

Contact Cactus Asphalt for Concrete Services Today

Making concrete from limestone cement is not an overly difficult process, but you should rely on the expertise of one of the area’s top paving companies to answer any questions for you. Cactus Asphalt is happy to treat all our customers as if they are part of our family, so reach out for assistance whenever you need concrete services. We can help you with the concrete-making process, but we can also assist with any concrete repairs you may need in Phoenix, AZ. Contact us today.