Construction is one of the most successful industries around the world. As the population increases and as the needs of the masses increase, more and more housing facilities as well as factories, offices and other projects increase. Old buildings are being demolished, and new and improved buildings are taking their place. Metropolitan cities are becoming megacities and expanding all the time. Suffice it to say that this industry has a lot of potentials and it is not letting anyone down.
When we talk about construction, the most important thing to consider is the materials being used in it. You want your structure to be aesthetically pleasing as well as functional, affordable and sustainable. For these matters, construction companies use all types of materials depending on the needs and requirements of the clients. Some of the materials being used currently in the construction business are wood, cement, metals, bricks, clay and concrete. These are the materials that you will commonly find around your city. One of the factors that affect the choice of construction materials is cost-effectiveness.
In the past era, many other materials were also used for building structures like clay, sand, rocks, and even twigs. Nowadays, mostly human-made materials are used as they are more effective and long-lasting. The construction industry has specific trades like plumbing, roofing, insulation work, and others. Today, we are going to talk about one of those aspects: construction material. Specifically concrete and why you should choose it over all the other materials available in the market.
BENEFITS OF CONCRETE
Concrete is one of the most widely used material in the world. There are several advantages that it has over all the other materials that make it highly sought after. Here are 10 of those advantages explained briefly:
1. Concrete is Economic
When you compare the prices of concrete with other materials, you will find out that it is more affordable. The production cost is very economical, that is why the overall cost is also low. You can use it when building your house, a multi-story project, a plant, or anything else that you want, and it will fall within your budget. You will not have to worry about breaking your bank. There are other things that you have to take care of apart from construction. If you have a high cost while building the project, how will you have the budget for other things like plumbing, painting, roofing, etc.?
2. Concrete Hardens at Ambient Temperature
You do not need a specific environment or temperature for concrete. It can set, harden and maintain its strength at room temperature or ambient temperature. That makes it one of the most sought-after material in the world as you do not have to worry about it once you have used it in a project. The reason why it can set and harden at room temperature is that the materials in concrete are bonded inorganically. So, no matter what the weather conditions are in your area, you can safely use it. You might have to use some admixtures occasionally, but that is it.
3. Cast into Any Shape
When you make a fresh batch of concrete, you will see that it is in an almost liquid state. This means that you can pour it into any structure that you want, and it will take the shape of the structure. It does not matter what the size of the structure is or how complex the shape is. Concrete will always take shape.
4. Energy Efficiency in Production
As compared to some other materials like steel, concrete does not need a lot of energy for its production. This is due to several reasons, one of them being that it is an inorganically bonded compound. Structural steel needs around 8000 kWh/ton or more energy to make while standard concrete needs only 450-750 kWh/ton and if you are going for reinforced concrete then you only need to apply 800-3200 kWh/ton of energy. That is why a lot of people go for concrete instead of any other material.
5. Water Resistance
Another one of its features that makes concrete irresistible is its ability to withstand water more than its competitors like steel and wood. Concrete can stay in water for longer without showing serious signs of damage. That is the reason why concrete is preferred in construction projects that are in or near water. These could be pipelines that go through the water or dams, canals, linings, and structures that are near or at the beach or any other body of water.
6. High-temperature resistance
Not only is concrete high water-resistant, but it is also temperature resistant and can withstand high temperatures better than its counterparts like steel and wood. It is also a bad conductor of heat, thus better at keeping the insides of the structure cool and safe. If there is any emergency concerning fire, concrete can give you 2-6 hours of protection so that the rescue teams can reach you. In structures that need to be made with steel, concrete is used for fireproofing the steel as well as in blast applications.
7. Ability to Consume and Recycle Waste
Concrete has the distinct ability to consume various types of waste. It can be used either as a substitute for cement or as an aggregate. Materials that can be used are fly ash, blast-furnace slag, and more.
8. Application in Reinforced Concrete
There are a lot of applications of reinforced concrete as the coefficient of thermal expansion of concrete are comparable with steel. Concrete gives added protection to the steel, especially if the steel is in a corrosive environment.
9. Low Maintenance
Not only is concrete affordable to make, but it is also highly economical to maintain. You do not need any paint or coating on concrete as compared to steel or wood.
10. Multiple Application
One of the reasons why concrete is liked so much is that it has multiple purposes and can be used in different projects and applications. You can apply it with hand, and you can use in highly advanced projects with ease and comfort.
These and many other benefits warrant the use of concrete much more than the other materials that are available in the market.