Curing is the most crucial process for any concrete project. And keeping the concrete wet during the curing is a must, So, it is a big “YES!!”. Now, there are many aspects that we have to keep in mind to cure our concrete.
For proper curing, you need to maintain the correct temperature and dampness for the first time that concrete is poured. Currently, the curing process is simple to caper, but it will significantly affect the consistency of your finished work. Although curing is necessary for all concrete, with horizontal surfaces, the problems arising from not curing are most evident.
Similar to this, there can be many difficulties during this curing process. Let’s not discuss all of them here. We have elaborated them through the article.
Let’s get started.
Do You Need to Keep Concrete Wet During the Curing Process?
Tools required for Concrete Curing
Every construction work needs a tool. There are some tools which you can buy for doing this work.
What does the concrete curing method mean?
Curing is the method of maintaining, during cement hydration, the rate and degree of moisture loss from concrete. It avoids the loss of moisture from the exposed surface by constantly wetting it.
What is wet concrete?
A flow-able type of concrete that can be poured from a mixer, hopper or truck is wet concrete. To aggregate around reinforcement and around the form, the damp cast is often used for more significantly more challenging sections and require flow-ability in the concrete.
Factors of curing
We have to keep in mind these factors that are discussed below. Curing is a sensitive process, which can be ruined for a single slight mistake. So be very careful and follow the process.
After doing some investigations we find concretes at various ages when cured for the first 28 days at temperatures of 120°, 105°, 90°, 73°, 55°, 40°, and 25°F, and then cured for the remaining period at 73°F until the age of 365 days. After one day, the 120°F concrete becomes the strongest, and the 25°F concrete becomes the weakest.
By seven days the high-temperature cured concrete had no more strength than the 73° concrete or even less. By the age of 28 days, the high-temperature concrete is weaker than the 73° concrete. From 28 days to 1 year the 55° concrete is considerably more robust than the 73° concrete.
From 90 days onward the 40° concrete was more potent than the 73° concrete, and the 25° concrete was slightly more robust than the 73° concrete.
All the information says that concrete cured at about 55 ° for the first 28 days eventually reaches the sharp peak, provided continuous curing.
Concrete needs to remain moist for it to cleanse. The internal relative humidity needs to be above 80% to 85% relative humidity for hydration. A barrier of water is created by wetting the surface of bare concrete. It prevents the moisture from inside the concrete from being drawn out when the surface moisture evaporates.
There have a buffer acted like water on the concrete. When concrete is covered in plastic, the air trapped under the plastic rapidly becomes saturated with water vapour.
The concrete remains moist, the greater its strength and resistance to the suction forces. This means fewer cracks and less curling. Wet curing reduces pore size, which is less moisture is accessible to evaporate.
Some businessmen try concrete to create a dry pole properly. Temperature and relative humidity are important factors to pay attention to that your concrete dries to the degree you need it to so that sealer performs the path you and your client expect it to. If your shop is cold, the evaporation rate is slower.
These limit how much drying occurs. If your shop is at 100% relative humidity, it doesn’t matter how long you “dry” the concrete. It won’t lose moisture and dry out because the air surrounding the concrete can’t hold any more water.
Wet concrete doesn’t dry out in small, cold shops with still air. Rapid drying will be caused by hot shops with moving air that has a little relative humidity.
How long healing time does concrete take?
Generally, when the bleed water is evaporating from the surface faster than it is rising out of the concrete at the time of concrete wet during the process, some initial curing is needed to do by you else you end up with plastic shrinkage cracks. Medium curing will be required between the first set and last set if the finishing is done before the previous stage. After the final scene, you have to do the final curing.
The entire concrete healing period takes approximately one month. Due to contrasts in the weather, each project differs slightly. Here is the pacing of the concrete mix and methods for preparation and finishing.
24 to 48 hours, the forms can be removed after the first stage, and individuals can walk on the floor. At seven days the traffic from cars and devices should be cleared after partial healing. And at last, after 28 days the concrete should be fully cured at the previous point.
Maturity matters the most
By calculating the best mix design and training personnel exhaustively on how to bundle, place and consolidate. At the same time, these are all essential steps in manufacturing quality concrete. The world’s project identifiers rely on precast concrete because of exceptional hardened properties.
These are durability, strength, and resistance to harsh environments. Curing is much more than simple hardening due to water and cementitious ingredients undergoing a chemical reaction.
During hydration, calcium silicate hydrate (CSH) gel creates and makes the “glue” that qualifies concrete to harden. When we think of curing, we usually think of ensuring we keep moisture on the concrete’s surface. But a wet body does not become enough. For full design strength, concrete must be adequately cured at its surface.
Hydration is a direct function of both the w/c and available water. Designers know a low w/c means an inherently stronger. This is the reason why dry weather requires shallow water for proper curing. If the internal humidity falls below 80% within the first seven days, strength and service life may be jeopardised.
Ambient temperatures below 50 F are terrible news because concrete’s falls below 40 F, hydration virtually stops. The higher the curing temperature, the faster the hydration, the greater the strength gain.
Three wet-cast curing phases
Generally, curing is a single-step process. Here we give these steps elaborately because of your understanding, and this may be easy for you to do work by yourself.
- Original curing: During concrete placement and final finishing, initial curing occurs to decrease moisture loss from the finished surface. Curing steps should be initiated at this point immediately after the bleed water sheen disappears, as the body is shielded from drying as long as it is filled with bleed water. Initial healing measures that show low or negligible bleeding are needed for concrete. The risk of plastic-shrinkage cracking is minimised by initial curing and also involves evaporation reducers and fogging.
- Medium curing: Intermediate curing requires processes after completion but before the final collection of concrete.
- Final healing: Final curing applies to the procedures conducted after completion and after the final collection has been accomplished. Finally, final curing applications such as wet coverings for curing mixtures are required to use saturated burlap covers.
The Importance of Concrete Curing
Curing plays a vital role in strength development and durability of concrete. So, curing” is the chemical process through which, once poured, concrete hardens.” The mixture’s water content blends with aggregate and cement during hydration in a chemical transformation that provides the best possible strength in the final slab.
Adequately cured concrete has a higher surface hardness and can withstand wear and abrasion of the surface better. There is often more moisture in the initial mix than the final slab can contain. The process of hydration is not complete without proper curing.
The planned strength of concrete can never be obtained, and please remember that this is a loss of power for a lifetime, and there is no simple solution to reinforcing such weak concrete that is poorly cured. So be patient and heal with care at all times.
Some Important FAQs
Please go through this question and answer part. These will assist you in understanding the topic above.
- During recovery, can you wet concrete?
The curing process is helped by holding concrete moisture. If a lot of water is disoriented by evaporation from the concrete, the hardening process falls asleep or ceases. After pouring, concrete begins to gain strength, but the longer it wet-cures, the slower the gain of power.
- How long does it take for 4 inches of concrete to heal?
After anywhere from 24 to 48 hours, the concrete should be solid enough to step on without leaving footprints. Your concrete should be cured to at least 70 per cent of its maximum strength by seven days.
- Is concrete going to recover under the dirt?
During building there is not too much water applied to the mix, you should be alright in covering the concrete with dirt. If concrete dries, it minimises its power. We may assume that the dirt fracturing weight will physically destroy it within a few hours.
- In a hole full of water, may you pour concrete?
The good news is that you can pump water into the concrete. Movement is the main difficulty with pouring concrete underwater. It will wash away the cement paste, which keeps the sand and gravel together if the water flows.
Finally, we can say that curing maintains satisfactory moisture content and temperature in concrete for a while immediately placing and finishing so that the desired properties may develop. Concrete wet during curing has a strong influence on hardened concrete properties; proper curing will increase durability, strength, abrasion resistance, volume stability, resistance to freezing, thawing, deicers, and volume stability.
I’m a concrete contractor by trade and have been working in the industry for over 25 years now. I’ve seen (and done) it all when it comes to concrete, and I love sharing my knowledge and experiences with others who are interested in learning more about this amazing material. In my spare time, I enjoy spending time with my family, fishing, and watching NASCAR races.