Over the past couple of decades, concrete has become a very popular material in the construction industry. It can be seen in large buildings, in the driveways of domestic households and many public locations. Concrete is mainly used outdoors in order to provide a unique, distinctive look to the building. However, many companies also offer decorative concrete, which can be used to brighten up a wall or make a room look much better. Decorative concrete must not be confused with outdoor concrete.
Even though they are made of the same composite material, decorative concrete comes in many shapes and sizes. Concrete is a mixture of cement, water and aggregate. Often times, building companies add a variety of other reinforcements, like rebar into the mix as well. This helps to make the concrete mixture stronger. Throughout the ages, concrete has been used in many different buildings. Popular examples include the Roman Pantheon, the Panama Canal and the Hoover Dam.
There are many types of concrete available nowadays. In order to achieve the desired physical properties, many building companies include different additives into the mixture. Concrete is not a modern find. For thousands of years, it has been used in the construction of buildings. The Romans used concrete in many of their buildings. Perhaps the biggest example is that of the Coliseum, which is built primarily of concrete. So why is concrete so popular? Why has it been used for thousands of years, and is still popular today? Here are a few reasons:
Very High Resource Efficiency
The main material used in the mixture of concrete is limestone. It is the single most common raw material used in building structures today. More importantly, limestone is the most commonly found mineral on earth. There are vast reserves of raw material in virtually every country. Millions of tons of limestone are extracted every day. Yet, geologists continue to find more and more reserves. Moreover, limestone is not the primary raw material used in concrete.
In fact, concrete can be made from a number of other materials, such as silica fume, fly ash and slag cement. In case you did not know, all three are waste by-products from steel mills and power plants. Many manufacturing facilities release large amounts of silica fume and slag cement. Building companies usually purchase this waste at a very cheap price and turn it into concrete.
When constructing any building, architects and designers have to worry about the heat. Without proper reflectivity, the building could turn into a massive, heated structure. Dark colored structures tend to absorb more heat as compared to light colored ones. That is one of the main reasons why concrete pavements are so popular. Not only do they reflect a large amount of solar radiation during the day, but they also absorb significantly less heat. This is one of the main reasons why concrete in Melbourne is popular. Since temperatures tend to skyrocket in cities such as Melbourne, concrete helps to maintain a bit of cool.
There’s no denying the fact that concrete is one of the most durable building materials currently in use today. Some of the oldest structures in the world were made of concrete. The Pantheon and the Coliseum are prime examples. Both of these are thousands of years old, and still stand strong. Companies that take on building contracts generally want to create robust, long lasting structures. Nobody wants to invest in a building which has an average life of around 100 years. The life span of concrete is approximately double or triple than that of conventional building materials. Because of the durability factor, concrete has a distinct advantage over other materials.
While taking on large building contracts, companies want to minimize their costs. However, they also have to comply with a series of different building regulations and construction codes. Not only is concrete one of the most widely accepted building materials in the world today, but also it is also very affordable. Because of the fact that it is made from such abundant materials and minerals, concrete does not command a high price.
Building an energy efficient home can help save you thousands of dollars in the long run. Houses or buildings that are built using concrete have much more thermal mass as compared to standard building materials. The reason why concrete buildings are more energy efficient is simply because they can absorb and retain more heat. This allows homeowners and building occupants to save significantly on utility bills. Moreover, it also allows them to invest in cheaper and smarter HVAC equipment to regulate the interior temperature.
Little to No Waste
Minimizing waste during the construction of a building is very important. According to government regulations, the company is responsible for picking up any residual waste after the project is complete. During the production of concrete, very little waste is generated. Even when a building needs to be demolished, the concrete can be crushed using sophisticated machinery. Then, it can be recycled and turned into aggregate. The aggregate can then be utilized in other applications, such as the construction of concrete pavements or as a road base.
It Retains Storm water
Pavements that are made out of concrete can prevent storm water from infiltrating the soil. If a lot of storm water permeates into the soil, it can create an imbalance in the ecosystem. This can even result in much greater problems such as erosion of the soil, flash floods, ground pollution and the depletion of the water table. Maintaining an even level is vitally important. When concrete is used for the construction of sideways, driveways, pavements and other types of walkways, it can store the storm water. This can later be used to replenish the water supplies of a particular building.
These are just some of the main reasons why concrete is such a popular building material. Currently, there are many companies that sell many types of concrete for different applications.