Advantages of Concrete: Why It Is a Rock-Solid Choice!
There are many advantages of concrete as a building material for commercial and residential construction projects. It is durable, resistant to water, and economical. Not to mention, there are plenty of uses for concrete, from foundations and supports to patios, driveways, and inground pools.
Concrete or Cement? What’s the Difference?
People often use the terms concrete and cement interchangeably. However, they are not the same things. Cement is a powdery substance that is used to make concrete. Concrete is a mixture of cement, aggregate (sand, gravel, recycled cement, etc.), and water.
When the materials used in concrete are mixed, the cement and water help bind together with the aggregate to create a rock-solid material. This is why concrete is one of the most used building materials in the world!
The top advantage of concrete for commercial and residential construction projects includes:
Compared to different construction materials, the production costs of concrete are much lower than steel or even wood, for that matter. The materials used in concrete are also readily available and have a relatively cheap cost.
Concrete retains its durability for far longer than other types of building materials. It can last a quarter of a century or longer. So, while age can cause other materials to degrade, concrete remains strong.
Concrete can be poured in a wide variety of shapes and sizes. From concrete foundations and driveways to concrete blocks and support beams, concrete will retain its shape and size once poured and cast.
#4: Little-to-No Maintenance
Unlike other building materials that can require annual repainting, resealing, or recoating, concrete is easy to maintain. If it cracks or chips, you simply fill in the imperfections with fresh concrete. When used for outdoor applications, concrete needs to be released every three to five years.
Investing in concrete is a construction cost that continues to pay off year after year. This is because concrete reduces operating costs in the long run. Even if the costs seem more upfront, you have to look at the long-term return on your investment. In most cases, concrete always provides the best ROI.
#6: Natural Insulating Material
Concrete has natural insulation properties that help conserve energy. As a result, concrete buildings and homes save as much as 25% or more on monthly energy bills. When combined with other insulation materials, those energy savings continue to increase.
#7: Natural Water Resistance
Concrete is the preferred choice for construction projects where the material will be constantly exposed to water. From pools and koi ponds to planters and underground pipelines, concrete works much better than other building materials.
#8: Lowers Insurance Premiums
Concrete is very fire resistant, and it will not burn. It can handle extreme temperatures up to 1,500 degrees Fahrenheit before it begins to lose structural integrity. Concrete is also not prone to water damage. Not to mention, concrete can withstand high winds, which is ideal for hurricane-prone areas.
As a result, insurance premiums are usually much lower compared to other building materials. Additionally, if repairs need to be made, the repair costs are much less and easier to make.
One of the great things about concrete is it can be recycled endlessly. Old concrete can be ground up, turned into aggregate, and mixed with water and cement to make new concrete. As such, concrete is a very eco-friendly building material.
#10: Energy Efficient
If you compare the production costs of concrete to wood, steel, asphalt, and other building materials, you will see that the energy efficiency to produce concrete is significantly lower. Energy usage to produce concrete ranges anywhere from three to ten times lower for wood and steel, and as much as 75% less than asphalt production.
#11: Easy to Reinforce
Concrete is easy to reinforce when building homes, commercial buildings, roads, parking lots, etc. Steel rebar is set inside the concrete to provide the reinforcement. In addition, many steel structures are built using reinforced concrete with the steel reinforcing the concrete.
#12: Multiple Application Methods
Concrete offers flexibility with different application methods, including:
- Cast-in-Place Concrete
- Poured ConcreteThank you !!
- Sprayed Concrete
- Pumped Concrete
#13: Easily Hardens and Cures
Concrete does not need to be heated or cooled for it to harden and cure. Normal temperatures are all that is required to use concrete, as long as they do not get below 55 degrees Fahrenheit. So, even on the hottest summer days in Texas when asphalt would not set because it was too hot, concrete would harden and cure without any problems.
#14: Acts as a Filler
Concrete can act as a filler when used with other materials, such as steel concrete. For example, you have hollow steel fence posts that you want to reinforce. By pouring concrete into the fence posts, the concrete acts as a filler and binds to the steel to increase the sturdiness of the steel.
#15: Perfect for High-Temp Environments
Bakeries, kilns, steel and iron foundries, and other manufacturing facilities that generate high production temperatures are built out of concrete because of its ability to withstand high-temp environments.
#16: Perfect for Coastal Areas
Coastal areas have to deal with added moisture and salt water in the air, which can quickly erode wood and steel. Concrete is resistant to higher humidity levels and salt water, so it is a better building material to use, as most weather conditions will not affect it at all.
Finding a Houston Concrete Contractor
Now that you have learned about the advantage of concrete, you can see why it is one of the most used building materials. When it is time to find a concrete contractor for your next residential or commercial project in Houston, look no further than Cross Construction Services.
We have over 30 years of experience in the concrete and construction industries. We also offer custom design-build and construction project management services. For a free project estimate, call us at 713-254-1703 today!