A Comprehensive Guide to Concrete Delivery
From skyscrapers to patios and new building projects, concrete plays a crucial role in shaping our modern infrastructure. It couldn’t happen, though, without different types of concrete delivery. This pivotal stage in any construction project ensures that the concrete reaches the designated site promptly and in excellent condition.
Custom Concrete is a long-established supplier of volumetric concrete to the construction industry, residential builds and DIY across Bedfordshire, Buckinghamshire, and Hertfordshire. In this comprehensive guide, we will consider the different types of concrete delivery, by taking a close look at the equipment used, and best practices that ensure a successful and timely procedure.
Types of Concrete Delivery
There are two ways that concrete can be delivered to your site, by concrete mixer, or by volumetric trucks:
1. Mix On-Site Concrete Delivery
Mix on-site concrete delivery involves the transportation of the concrete raw materials in volumetric trucks. Once in position, the truck is programmed to mix the concrete batch you require fresh and ready to pour. Multiple batches can be produced in the course of one visit.
This method is beneficial when immediate usage of concrete is required, or when the construction site has limited access to ready-mix batching plants. Advantages for site owners include the provision of freshly mixed concrete, reduction of waste, and the ability to make tweaks on site to the volume or mix.
2. Ready-Mixed Concrete Delivery
Ready-mix concrete delivery involves the use of specialised batching plants that mix concrete ingredients to precise proportions. The freshly mixed concrete is then transported to the construction site using transit mixers, which are large trucks equipped with rotating drums. The controlled mixing process guarantees a consistent and high-quality concrete mix, tailored to the specific project requirements.
The Concrete Delivery Process
Awaiting a concrete delivery can be a nail-biting process for site managers. If trucks get delayed, the schedule is impacted and with it, your profits. Good concrete delivery involves close attention to detail, and the support of a knowledgeable customer service team to keep the process working at maximum efficiency.
1. Planning and Scheduling
Efficient planning and scheduling are critical for a smooth concrete delivery process. Customers work closely with concrete suppliers to determine the required quantity of concrete, delivery timelines, and specific project needs. A well-coordinated schedule helps prevent delays and ensures that the concrete is delivered when and where it is needed most.
Volumetric concrete is ordered by volume using a specialist calculator. Customers enter the dimensions of the job they need the concrete for, and the mix they require. They can then order the exact volume for the task.
2. Pre-Pour Inspection
Before ready-mix concrete is dispatched for delivery, it undergoes a pre-pour inspection. This inspection involves checking the quality and consistency of the concrete mix to ensure that it meets the project specifications. Any discrepancies are promptly addressed, ensuring that the concrete delivered is of the highest quality and integrity.
Volumetric concrete delivery allows for quality checking on site. The truck is programmed to mix the required batch, with any last-minute adjustments taken into account. It is then inspected pre-pour and dispatched immediately.
3. Concrete Delivery
Once the concrete is ready for delivery, it is loaded onto transit mixers or mobile mixers, depending on the chosen method. The delivery team follows the predetermined route to the construction site, taking into account factors like traffic, road conditions, and weather.
For ready-mix concrete trucks, prompt delivery is essential, as concrete has a limited window of workability before it starts to set. This does not apply with volumetric concrete as it is mixed on-site where it will be poured immediately.
4. Placement and Pouring
Upon arrival at the construction site, the concrete is poured and placed according to the project requirements. Not all sites provide the perfect environment for a pour, which is why concrete pump hire is often an integral part of the concrete delivery process.
There are 2 types of concrete pumps for hire as part of your concrete delivery: the concrete boom pump, and the concrete line pump. No matter the access challenges your site presents, one of these pumps will provide the perfect solution.
- Concrete Line Pump. Made up of multiple connected pipes, the line pump is used to navigate any obstacles on site, reach across long distances and speed up concrete delivery. The concrete is channelled into the hopper and then pumped through the pipes to its destination. The line pump guarantees fast, clean delivery of your concrete.
- Concrete Boom Pump. If you require drop delivery from above, the boom pump is what you need. A hydraulic arm facilitates the lifting and placing of pipes where access is difficult. Boom pumps are used on sites with restricted access, or in the construction of multi-storey buildings.
Best Practices For All Types of Concrete Delivery
You may have the best trucks, batching plants, and raw materials, but a concrete delivery company that does not follow industry best practice won’t gain and keep long-term customers. Here are the 4 key priorities to ensure customers are well served:
1. Collaborative Communication
Effective communication between the construction project team and the concrete supplier is the cornerstone of successful concrete delivery. Regular updates, sharing of project plans, and addressing potential challenges proactively are essential to maintain a smooth flow of operations.
Integral to clear, effective communication is having a team that either has industry experience or has been trained to understand the uses of concrete, concrete delivery, and customer requirements.
2. Adherence to Safety Protocols
Safety should always be a top priority during concrete delivery. Both the delivery team and on-site workers must strictly follow safety protocols to prevent accidents and injuries. Regular safety training and the use of personal protective equipment (PPE) are vital in ensuring a safe working environment.
3. Use of Advanced Technology
Embracing technological advancements can significantly enhance the concrete delivery process. GPS tracking systems should be integrated into delivery vehicles, allowing real-time monitoring of the concrete’s location and estimated time of arrival. Additionally, advanced concrete mixers equipped with automation features can ensure precise mixing, reducing human errors.
4. Environmental Considerations
Concrete suppliers and construction companies are increasingly adopting eco-friendly practices. Using sustainable materials in concrete mixes, optimising delivery routes to minimise fuel consumption, and reducing or recycling concrete waste are some eco-conscious initiatives that can positively impact the environment.
About Custom Concrete
Custom Concrete is a specialist supplier of site mixed concrete. We operate a modern fleet of volumetric concrete trucks that bring all the ingredients to site and mix the quantity, strength, and workability that you require. Our concrete delivery can be relied upon to be prompt, efficient, knowledgeable, and friendly.
If you would like to know more about Custom Concrete delivery for residential, construction and DIY sites, call us today on 01525 861899