If you are planning to upgrade your backyard by building a porch or shed, laying a new driveway or concrete slab for a basketball court, it is important to prepare the ground before you pour the concrete. There are several factors to consider prior to pouring concrete, including checking if you have an uneven ground since this could likely break apart or sink in the long run and even cause significant cracks.
Pouring concrete is relatively straightforward but prepping the ground and framing the area can be quite daunting. So, depending on the type and size of the slab you want to create, the prep time will take five to seven hours, sometimes even longer. Therefore, it is essential that you plan and properly level your surface.
Here are our recommended steps for this task:
It is important to measure the area where you will pour the concrete, so you will need to dig to a depth of at least three to five inches. Also, you need to check if the soil beneath is mostly clay because this will require digging at least 2 inches more to hold the gravel and make way for the drainage. Finally, you can use spray paint to mark the area.
You may also need to dig a trench around the spot where the concrete will be poured. Make sure that it's 4 inches deep and 6 inches wide. This is commonly done to ensure that the concrete surface will be stronger and less likely to crack with time.
It is important to create a level surface. You can use the flat side of a rake to smooth the ground. Try filling the pits with dirt and always check accuracy by using a level measuring tool.
Another important thing to do is to tamp down the surface with a manual hand or machine tamper. This will pack the soil thoroughly and make the concrete less susceptible to cracks. You also have the option to add gravel on the surface and tamping it down to ensure that the ground is levelled correctly.
We recommend using stones at the base of the new slope because this will serve as added protection or low wall to prevent erosion or loose soil. Although you will need a professional for specialised projects like building a larger retaining wall for more safety and stability.
Most importantly, don't forget to place a level on several parts of the ground and always check they are levelled correctly. If you noticed that there are uneven spots, try to fill those parts with the removed dirt or gravel from other areas.
Overall, it's essential to do your research and determine if you need to reinforce the concrete. This will greatly depend on the requirements of your project. After following all of these steps, you have now created a great outdoor living space the whole family can enjoy!
Exposed aggregate concrete is often used in constructing driveways because it offers a unique look and feel. Therefore, homeowners in Canberra often use this material to upgrade and renovate their front and backyard landscape.
Another reason it is one of the favourite concretes for landscaping is that it can produce totally unique and compelling designs. It is also more attractive than basic concrete and more durable than bricks. If you are looking at the costs, exposed aggregate is very cost effective.
Here are some notable benefits of exposed aggregate in any landscaping project:
However, you must hire professional installers and concreters that will help you realised your envisioned design. In fact, reliable concreters like Canberra Concreting can lay down and set up an exposed aggregate surface based on your specific preferences. They also have a team of highly skilled and experienced professionals who can provide you with the results you are looking for. No matter what design you choose for your property, they have the equipment and expertise to build it for you.
If you ask any building contractor, they all tell you the same thing – concrete is an integral part of any construction project. Although you do not need to ask a professional to tell you that. Concrete has long been an essential ingredient in any building or structure.
Just look at the structures that surround you, like the pavements that you walk on or the patio in your backyard – concrete is everywhere. That is why we will explore the properties, materials, and uses of concrete and how you can use it for your projects.
What is concrete?
Concrete is the most widely used construction material and is created through a mix of various materials like cement, fine aggregate, water, gravel, and crushed stones. Gravel and sand or crushed stones are common examples of coarse or fine aggregate.
Why is it so important?
Concrete is known to be like mortars in both structure and composition. In fact, concrete becomes a binder for different types of masonry units in construction, which means it acts like mortar.
Although concrete has more uses than ordinary mortar and is more versatile as it contains both fine and coarse aggregates. The large coarse aggregate will provide strength attributes to concrete, a characteristic that mortars do not have. This makes concrete more suitable for heavier and larger structures.
Properties of concrete that make it great for construction projects
Many concrete companies will advertise the benefits of concrete and for good reasons. It offers several excellent attributes for structures and buildings. These include the following:
Overall, the many properties of concrete have made it an essential material for the construction industry in Canberra. Using concrete can add value to your landscape, while also making it an attractive and comfortable place to live.
If you are planning to install or upgrade your driveway, you can contact Canberra Concreting today. We have a team of highly skilled and professional concreters that can help with your project.
Compared to wooden decks, bricks and paver stones, concrete patios are the clear winner in our opinion. In fact, concrete patio surfaces are more affordable, and you can choose from a wide variety of styles. Not to mention they are easy to maintain, durable and more easily repaired or resurfaced.
Why choose a concrete patio surface?
You can also choose sophisticated designs such as embossing or engraving patterns and logos into the concrete surface to emulate a variety of natural stones from marble to slate. This makes a concrete surface stylish but cost-effective.
Therefore, if you are planning to improve the value of your home, it is important to make a wise decision and ensure that you are maximising your return on investment. Choosing concrete is often a more logical choice because it can have a finish that compliments your home and can be an appropriate fit with your design and backyard landscaping, without the added expense.
Both surfaces must be scrubbed, sanded, and power washed until smooth before you can reseal them. If they are properly maintained, they can last up to 30 years. Although sealant application is far better and more straightforward for concrete compared to wooden decks.
In fact, concrete patios have a distinct maintenance advantage as sealant is only needed once every 3 to 5 years. Wooden decks must be re-stained and resealed annually, which means they will cost more time and money to maintain than a concrete surface. However, it is important to choose the right material for your landscape and design.
Why choose Canberra Concreting
We are the leading concreting company in Canberra, and we have a team of highly skilled and professional concreters that can help you upgrade or build a concrete patio. Combined with state-of-art equipment and our years of experience in this business, you can be sure that we can provide you the best quality service that you expect.
Most importantly, we are transparent when it comes to the total cost of your project. We can even guide you on which type of concrete or cement mix is suitable for your landscape. So, we urge you to get in touch with us today; our team will provide you a quote based on the design you want to achieve.
We want our homes to be safe from all types of accidents, but there will always be a slight risk of fire hazard. That is why we need to know some basic safety precautions to prevent fire accidents in our homes that could lead to costly damages or fatal injuries. There are ways to prevent fire, but many homeowners ignore this.
There are a few simple things you can do to protect yourself and your family from fire accidents, and these will include the following:
Fire tip #1
Home fires can happen at any moment, and it can cause serious dangers to anybody on your property. In fact, it only takes 5 minutes before the fire can engulf the whole house, so inhabitants will only have two minutes to escape. It is best to use a fire extinguisher or if you think it is out of control – get out of the house with your family as fast as you can.
You must also turn off any kitchen appliance after use or just cut the main power switch. Never leave your kids unattended in the kitchen, especially if you have flammable materials in your kitchen like paper towels, oven mitts, etc.
Fire tip #2
We recommend that you use concrete material in your kitchen, especially on the island or sink, since it does not burn, and it can retain its strength even in high temperatures. You may also want your roof treated with a fire retardant. If this is something you are interested in, you need to get in touch with a building contractor because they can provide you with some good options, especially when it comes to fire-retardant compounds.
If you are barbequing in your backyard, you should not use highly flammable materials like gasoline because it tends to blow up, and you might even catch fire to your clothes and skin. It is safer to use a dry kindling material than gasoline.
Using concrete in your construction projects
When building a patio in your backyard, it is best to use concrete since it is more versatile, safer than timber, and fire-proof. Concrete patios are cleaner, smoother, and can be cast to form various designs and geometric shapes, making them more stylish. You can even use concrete for outdoor furniture in your backyard because it’s more durable and a non-combustible alternative to timber or wood. In fact, there are several finishing options that can mimic wood or timber depending on your taste and the design you want to achieve.
Using concrete in some of your fixtures can minimise the risks of fire, and it is more affordable than other building materials. Most importantly, it is easy to maintain, so you can never go wrong if you choose it for your construction or renovation projects.
Overall, concrete is an excellent building material, but if you choose to use it on your projects, you should only deal with professional concreters like Canberra Concreting.
Slippery concrete is quite dangerous, and it can lead to unfortunate accidents. If there is a slippery surface in your home, it is important to take all the necessary precautions to avoid any slip accidents. This means you will need to make sure the slippery surface is protected from water and other elements to prevent it from becoming slippery. However, if this is not possible, there are some things you can do to make your concrete surface less slippery.
Here are some of our recommendations to transform your concrete surface to a non-slip area:
Overall, there are several options to make your surface less slippery, adding functionality, style and value to your Canberra property. However, it would be wise to contact a professional concreting company since they can help you find the best option based on the type of concrete surface you have on your property.
Concrete has many benefits, but the most significant one is its durability, as well as the fact that it is easier to maintain than other construction materials. However, there are specific issues you will encounter in time, especially if you’re not maintaining it properly. Some of the concrete problems will include discolouration, scaling, shrinkage, cracking, other issues.
Here are some troubleshooting tips for many of these issues:
You can reduce cracking on your concrete surface if you remove the soft spots in the subgrade, organic material, and topsoil. You can also compact loose soil or install concrete joints through forming, tooling, and sawing a groove.
Another important thing to do to reduce cracking is to maximise the amount of course aggregate and avoid using retardant admixture because this can easily weaken your concrete so that it becomes prone to cracking.
To remedy discolouration, you need to prepare a uniform subgrade and wait until the water evaporates before finishing the process. This will prevent hard trowelling on the surface and ensure the colour is even throughout the concrete.
It is essential to talk to your contractor and ensure that they are correctly bonding materials when applying thin topping mixes. They must also use the right amount of steel reinforcement on each concrete slab. Also, concrete must be placed on an absorptive sub-grade to ensure that water will not be pushed on the top of the slab.
Overall, choosing the right concrete for your intended application, maintaining it regularly and repairing it when issues arise, will ensure that you can enjoy your concrete surface for years to come.
Your outdoor landscape is an important element of your home since it provides a space for entertainment and gatherings. In fact, it can even become the extension of your indoor space. The specifics of an outdoor landscape can be customised based on your envisioned design and lifestyle, but there is a broad category of concrete to choose from.
Here are some options we recommend:
Poured concrete is the most popular option for an outdoor landscape because it comes in a wide variety of textures and colours, making it suitable for any type of surface. It’s also low maintenance and can be properly installed in any landscape. However, the costs for using concrete will significantly depend on the complexity of the finishing process.
You should also understand that concrete is an impermeable surface, which means water cannot pass through it. Instead, water runs off its surface, which may cause localised flooding.
Therefore, you must hire an experienced concreting service provider who can guide you with the right concrete mix, as they have the right tools to professionally lay concrete.
Stamped concrete or textured concrete is another great option since it can replicate stones, tiles, bricks, and even wood. There are a wide variety of patterns and colour choices – making stamped concrete popular for beautifying pool surrounds, driveways, patios, and more outdoor entertainment areas.
Additionally, stamped concrete is affordable since it requires less maintenance than other types of concrete.
Concrete pavers are available in various colours, shapes, sizes, and texture, and it can easily be placed on top of packed sand. It can also be butted together to get a smooth and unbroken surface. This type of method is suitable for hindering the growth of weeds between spaces.
However, if you like a more traditional look, then you can leave the spaces between the pavers and just fill it up with pebbles, pea gravel, or a tight, low-growing ground cover.
Outdoor Patterned Concrete
Patterned concrete is a revolutionary method in concreting since it incorporates colour and patterns to freshly poured concrete on patios, paths, and driveways. Using this method, you can re-create the looks of authentic materials like slate and stone.
It is also cost-effective since it requires minimal maintenance. Patterned concrete with dolomite as sub-case and four inches of fibre can reinforced its strength and eliminate any problems in the long run. Patterned concrete can survive the winter and rainy months – making it a fantastic alternative to wooden decking.
To learn more or organise your free quote, contact Canberra's best concreting contractors now.
Wood is a popular material for many construction projects in Canberra because it is plentiful, durable, and can easily be cut based on the project's requirements. Timber also has several benefits like thermal elasticity, resistance to electrical charges, sound isolation, and it's easy to repair and maintain.
However, wood has several structural disadvantages, which can affect any type of construction. In fact, it's known to shrink, swell and deteriorate when exposed to various kinds of conditions like extreme temperatures. Wood is also known to produce biological diseases and fungi if they are not properly treated.
Not to mention that termites, insects, and moisture can also damage it. Fortunately, there are other alternatives in the market that you can use to mitigate these disadvantages.
Here are some of our alternative recommendations:
Bamboo is considered a natural raw material, and it's more elastic than wood and it can significantly absorb energy, which means it's ideal for seismic-resistant construction for areas with frequent seismic activity. It's light and can easily be cut despite its strength.
So, if you are planning to upgrade or construct a new driveway or patio at your Canberra property, we recommend that you use concrete instead of wood. You will also need a reliable contractor who can help with your project. Our Concreting Services in Canberra can help you with any of your concrete needs.
Adding outdoor living spaces can add zest and will expand the usable square footage of your property. It’s also an ideal way to enjoy your outdoor areas, which is beneficial for Canberra homeowners because it will make outdoor living possible throughout the year. Once you have your new patio surface installed by professional concreters in Canberra, you can decide on accessories ideal for your needs and desires.
One good example is adding an outdoor kitchen and dining areas to your patio so it can be used as a venue for morning coffee and other outdoor activities like family barbecues. You can go much farther by creating ingenious living space that will transform your patio into something that will amaze your guests.
The benefits of outdoor kitchens
It is now possible to create outdoor kitchens and built-in grills, a growing trend in 2021. For a unique feel, you can even add features to your outdoor kitchen like outdoor rugs, flat screen televisions, cocktail tables, and outdoor chairs.
There are many benefits of outdoor kitchens but the most significant one is that it adds ambiance and style to your aging patio. There are a wide range of simple features you can add to your patio and outdoor kitchen that would impress a full-time chef. Constructing these new elements in your backyard will surely add value to your property.
Cooking outdoors is fun
The easiest and most ideal way of keeping your house tidy is to go out in your backyard and cook in your outdoor kitchen. You can even install a built-in grill in your patio and customised it to complement all your cooking needs. You can add drawers, burners, and other essential accessories to make your cooking more convenient.
If you are someone who loves pizza then you can install and add an outdoor pizza oven, which could have ceramic or flat brick surface. These ovens are operated by burning wood and the heat generated cooks the pizza. Outdoor ovens can also bake tender pizzas with bubbly crusts that are perfectly crisp.
Another excellent idea is to install a modular outdoor kitchen in your patio, which is created solely by concrete to make it more cost-effective and maintenance-free.
To make your out space even more beautiful, you can introduce some finishing touches like installing cylinders that can hold your plants, painting splashes of vibrant colours, elegant curvy urns that can add an inviting ambiance that your guests will surely love. You can even plant ornamental grass that will wave in the breeze – giving your outdoor area a more relaxing and comfortable feel.
Lastly, you can put outdoor rugs on your patio and some furniture to add some living room feels even while in your outdoor area.
Overall, it is possible to make your outdoor area into a functional and more enjoyable space, and you don’t need to break your bank to achieve it.
If you are a homeowner in Canberra and are planning to increase the value of your property, we suggest that you upgrade your outdoor space. This might include making your garden more attractive, as it can add as much as 10 percent to the value of your home.
Here are some cost-effective tips to spruce up your garden:
Creating a grand entrance to your home
Potential buyers or guests want to see something extraordinary when they go to your property. For this purpose, you should create a grand entrance to your home. Slow-growing alpine plants and conifers will do the trick. In fact, these plants will often grow about 7 to 8 feet tall and 6 feet wide, and they often give a welcoming ambiance that your guests will surely love.
Removing those overgrown shrubs and trees
Overgrown shrubs are not pleasant to the eyes, so you should not overlook your pruning chores because this will make your garden look neglected and dirty. Therefore, it’s a must to maintain your garden, and it’s also a great way to spend your lazy weekend with your buddies or family.
Adding outdoor container plants and mulch
Large tropical plants can add allure and contrast to your doorways and patios. Adding these container plants will surely wow your potential buyers when they enter and exit your home. In fact, these plants can make your home more inviting to your guests.
We also suggest that you add different types of mulch in your surrounding areas because it enhances the contrast in your home, especially if they are combined with various breeds of container plants. Not to mention that mulch is cheap and easy to apply.
The magic of decorative pots
If the plants in your garden don’t look as good as they should, then it’s time to replace them with decorative pots. Although you don’t need to remove these plants, you just need to relocate them to another area. The best thing about decorative pots is that they add variety and ambiance to your garden.
Vertical plants grow upright, giving them the capability to sprawl out in your garden nets, trellises, and fences. Examples of these crops will include cucumbers, spaghetti squash, peas, and pole beans. Vertical planting is a great way of saving lots of space and makes weeding a lot easier.
Leave a sweet spot in your garden
Gardens are magical places where you can enjoy nature right in your own backyard. Therefore, you need to beautify it by adding cheap decorative chairs and tables where your guests can sit and smell the flower or just enjoy their time when they visit your home.
Resurfacing and repairing your pathways, driveways and other outdoor areas
Another important thing to do to increase the value of your property is to repair, resurface, or place your damaged and old-looking outdoor areas and driveways. You can have an elegant and great looking driveway or patio through concrete resurfacing, or replacement with new decorative concrete.
There are several options to choose from when you repair, replace or resurface your outdoor areas. You can either choose exposed, stencilled, stamped, stained, or stencilled concrete with colour added. Although before you start this project, you need to seek the help of a professional and experienced contractor since they can determine if your surface or landscape is a good candidate, while also suggesting which materials are best for your property.
Overall, maintaining and improving your garden or any outdoor area is likely to increase the value of your property. Canberra Concreting can help you create and maintain your pathways, patios and driveways.