Have you ever found yourself delayed on a construction project because the crew had to wait for the right weather to pour concrete? Have you ever had a new concrete pavement poured only to discover a crack in it after just a few months or years? What if we told you there’s an easier way to get all the benefits of concrete, the beauty of stone, and the durability of a much stronger material? The solution is precast concrete paving.
Pour concrete paving can give you the look of stone for the price of concrete and the durability of steel. No more waiting around for the rain to stop so you can pour your concrete or winding up with a sub-par surface because the weather was too humid. Read on to learn more about precast concrete paving and the benefits it offers you.
What Are Precast Pavers?
Precast concrete pavers are tiles that are designed to mimic natural stone and take the place of poured concrete. They are made up of sand, gravel, and pebbles and can come in a variety of patterns and finishes. These tiles are made indoors in a controlled environment and are denser than either concrete or natural stones.
There are a number of benefits to using precast pavers instead of pouring concrete. And as far as replacing stone, they can achieve the same look with greater durability and lower cost.
The prep work for standard poured concrete is extensive, expensive, and time-consuming. You have to excavate the entire area you plan to pour with concrete and build frames on-site. Then you have the time the concrete has to spend drying to contend with, and a number of factors can impact the final look of the pavement.
Because concrete pavers come pre-formed, the requirements for excavation and prep work are dramatically less. You can excavate only the area needed, and you don’t have to worry about building frames. You also don’t have to make sure no cats, leaves, or teenagers come by to mess up your pavement.
When you’re pouring concrete, the weather has to be just so. It can’t be too hot or too cold or the curing time of the concrete might change. And if you run into a week of rainy weather, there’s not much you can do but wait it out.
Precast concrete pavers are created indoors, where you can control temperature and weather conditions aren’t a factor. They can be installed in just about any weather (though we do admit installing pavers in the rain or snow wouldn’t be our first choice). And because installing them is quick and easy, it can be worked around the needs of the rest of your construction schedule.
In general, concrete is a strong, durable materials that should stand up to years of wear and tear. But a number of factors can affect how durable a poured concrete pavement is. If the weather conditions are wrong when it’s poured, it may not dry as strong as one might hope.
But because precast concrete pavers are poured indoors, you can optimize their curing conditions. Everything from temperature to humidity can be rigidly monitored and controlled to give the pavers the best drying conditions. This also allows manufacturers to ensure consistency in their products so you don’t have a weak point in your pavement.
Quality Control Tests
Before a concrete pavement can be signed off on, it needs to be tested for quality control. With poured concrete, those tests must be performed outside on-site. You may have to wait again for rain delays, and once more, weather can impact the results of those tests.
Pre-cast concrete pavers can be tested inside before they ever hit the light of day. The pavers can be tested in rigidly controlled environments where ideal testing conditions are maintained. These tests can demand much stricter standards because there is a greater measure of control.
When you’re trying to decide whether to use concrete or stone, you should know that concrete is the more environmentally friendly option. Natural stone is a limited resource, but concrete is much more sustainable. It is also safe, non-toxic, and made from natural materials.
Precast concrete outshines poured concrete here, too. With poured concrete, not only do you have the environmental impact of the trucks that transport the concrete to the site, it is also harder to control any pollutants that may come from that process. Precast concrete paving is created in a controlled environment where manufacturers can manage pollutants more effectively.
If you’re building a structure where noise control is important, poured concrete is not your best bet. Noise can transfer easily from floor to floor in structures like dorms, offices, and apartment buildings. That makes for unhappy tenants, which is bad for your client’s business.
Precast concrete pavers are denser than poured concrete is. This can help limit the transfer of noise between floors. Precast pavers are very popular in large urban developments for this very reason.
When you pour concrete at a site, you’re more or less stuck with what you get. You can polish or stain concrete, but it’s hard to make it look like anything other than what it is.
Precast concrete offers a much wider range of aesthetic options. You can finish it to look like a variety of natural stone surfaces, including travertine, slate, and more.
Learn More About Precast Concrete Paving
Precast concrete paving is a great alternative to both natural stone and poured concrete. It is cheaper, more durable, and more sustainable than natural stone. And it is more convenient, more consistent, and stronger than poured concrete because of the conditions in which it is created.
If you’d like to get precast concrete paving for your next project, come see us at Limitless Paving and Concrete. We provide concrete and driveway paving, as well as snow removal, parking lot striping, seal coating, and more. Learn more about our concrete paving services and start building a better foundation now.