Concrete FAQs | Your Concrete Questions Answered | AMS Concrete

Concrete FAQs

Commonly asked questions regarding concrete

Whether this is your first time sourcing concrete for a project, or you’re an experienced tradesperson, we understand you may have concrete questions that need answering.

To try and provide some clarity on the subject of concrete, below we’ve briefly answered some of the most common questions we are asked regarding concrete. 

Concrete advice and orders

For help with choosing the right concrete mix design or to place an order, please call our friendly team 01202 579579 option 3.

You can collect your ready mixed concrete from Canford Recycling Centre, Arena Way, Wimborne, Dorset, BH21 3BW. We are open Monday to Friday 7:30am to 4pm.

The smallest amount of concrete you can collect is 0.3m3 per visit.

The upper limit is whatever weight your vehicle can carry, 1m3 weighs approx 2.3 tonnes.

We can deliver as little as 1m3 in a mixer, but it is usually more cost effective to have any loads smaller than 5m3 delivered via our mix on site option.

To book a ready mix concrete collection slot, call our friendly team on 01202 579579.

Each concrete drum mixer can hold a maximum of 8m3 for delivery in a single visit.

All of the most popular mixes are available, up to C50 for both concrete collections and deliveries.

We currently deliver mix on site or ready mixed concrete to all BH postcode locations.

As a rule you have two hours from the time the concrete is batched to the time it should be placed. This will vary due to temperature with the concrete setting quicker in hot weather.

Yes, we recommend that you wear long sleeved clothing, gloves and wellingtons if you will be standing in the concrete. Any contact with the skin can cause burns and should be washed off immediately. Our drivers will issue a safety sheet on delivery or collection.

We use volumetric concrete trucks for our mix on site service, and these essentially act as concrete batching plants on wheels. As a result, your concrete is mixed on site (as the name suggests) to the exact quantity required. For ready mix concrete deliveries, the concrete is prepared at our batching plant and delivered to you via a drum mixer, particularly useful for larger loads, or when you know exactly how much concrete you will need.

In general, collections of ready mix concrete directly from our batching plant is the cheapest option. For deliveries, the price and best option depends on the volume required. Our ready mix concrete deliveries are particularly cost effective for volumes of 5m3+, whereas mix on site concrete can be more cost effective for smaller quantities.

A volumetric concrete mixer (also known as volumetric mobile mixer) is a mixer on a truck or trailer that contains concrete ingredient materials and water to be mixed at the job site to produce the exact amount of concrete needed.

A volumetric concrete mixer produces concrete by proportioning the materials out over time by volume and relating that volume back to the materials specific weight. These materials are then dispensed into a mixing auger where they are completely mixed together and all the cement is able to come in contact with water to begin hydration as well as encapsulate the complete surfaces of any other material being added into the mix. The material is being added into the mix auger as if it were in handfuls at a time so the there is more than enough energy in the mix auger to ensure a complete and uniform mix by the time it comes out of the discharge end of the auger, which is typically only about 5-10 seconds.

On average, the farthest distance concrete can be placed using a chute is 12 feet, depending on mix consistency, measured from the truck’s tyres to the point of discharge. The wheels of the ready-mix truck must be kept 1 foot away from below-grade walls and 1 foot away from excavations and trenches.

By using volumetric trucks, AMS Concrete can ‘mix onsite’ and dispatch a complete range of concrete mixes, with the most common variations including:

  • C8/Gen0
  • C10/GEN1
  • C15/GEN2
  • C20/GEN3
  • C25
  • C30
  • C45
  • RC35
  • PAV1
  • PAV 2
  • C35 Pump mix
  • Foamed

Our ‘mix onsite’ trucks can dispatch between 1m3 – 9m3 of concrete per trip.

Temperature extremes make it difficult to properly cure concrete. On hot days, too much water is lost by evaporation from newly placed concrete. If the temperature drops too close to freezing, hydration slows to nearly a standstill. Under these conditions, concrete ceases to gain strength and other desirable properties. In general, the temperature of new concrete should not be allowed to fall below 50 Fahrenheit (10 Celsius) during the curing period.

Pouring concrete in Poole

There are a lot of reasons that concrete could crack. Initially, it could be because the concrete dries too quickly, there’s too much water in the mix or expansion joints weren’t installed properly.

That’s why it’s important to hire an experienced concrete contractor who knows just the right amount of water for the type of concrete being mixed and how to pour the concrete to avoid cracking.

Over time, tree roots could grow under the concrete and push up, resulting in stress on the concrete and eventual cracking. Settling in the ground underneath the concrete also can result in cracks if the concrete settles unevenly.

Under normal conditions, concrete has a useable life of about 1½ hours. However, in summer it will lose workability more rapidly. Ideally, it should be placed and completely finished within 1 hour of discharge from the truck. Usually, the concrete will need to be laid and levelled within two hours before the setting of the concrete makes things more difficult.

A cubic meter of concrete weighs about 2.5 tonne (2500 kgs) and it takes about 25 builders barrows to move 1.0 metres of concrete. Each barrow weighing 100 kgs approx.

We operate a minimum order of 0.5m3 of concrete. You can call us on 01202 579579 to discuss your requirements further and we’ll be happy to help.

When concrete is supplied by our volumetric trucks, it is discharged in to a pump’s hopper where agitators keep it moving. The concrete is then pumped through the pipelines to the pour location.

One cylinder pushes the concrete into the pipeline on the forward stroke, while the other cylinder draws concrete from the hopper on the return stroke. The pistons in both cylinders move in opposite directions to keep the pressure consistent and the concrete flowing freely.

The European standard for concrete EN 206, and its complimentary British Standard BS 8500, requires that concrete must be supplied at a minimum temperature of 5°C at the point of discharge and this temperature must be maintained on site using insulation. Therefore if concrete is batched below the minimum temperature the ticket is stamped and the strength of the concrete cannot be guaranteed.

Need more advice on concrete?

Our friendly and knowledgeable team would be happy to help you with your concrete queries or to place an order for you. You can speak to them today by calling 01202 579579 option3.

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Delivery Zone 1

  • BH1 – Bournemouth Town Centre, Springbourne, East Cliff, Boscombe
  • BH2 – Bournemouth Centre, West Cliff
  • BH3 – Talbot Woods, Winton
  • BH4 – Westbourne, Branksome Woods
  • BH5 – Boscombe, Pokesdown
  • BH7 – Littledown, Iford
  • BH8 – Malmesbury Park, Queens Park, Strouden Park, Townsend, Holdenhurst, Throop
  • BH9 – Winton, Moordown, Throop, Muscliff
  • BH10 – Kinson, Northbourne, Redhill, Ensbury Park, Wallisdown
  • BH11 – Kinson, Bear Cross, West Howe, Wallisdown
  • BH12 – Branksome, Alderney, Upper Parkstone, Wallisdown, Newtown
  • BH13 – Canford Cliffs, Sandbanks, Branksome Park
  • BH14 – Lower Parkstone, Lilliput, Penn Hill
  • BH15 – Poole Town Centre, Hamworthy, Oakdale
  • BH16 – Upton, Turlin Moor, Lytchett Minster, Lytchett Matravers
  • BH17 – Canford Heath, Creekmoor
  • BH18 – Broadstone
  • BH21 – South only
  • BH22 – Ferndown, West Moors, West Parley

Delivery Zone 2

  • BH6 – Southbourne, Tuckton, Wick
  • BH20 – Wareham, Wool, Bere Regis
  • BH21 – North Only – please contact us for further details
  • BH23 – Christchurch, Mudeford, Highcliffe
  • BH24 – Ringwood, St Leonards, Ashley Heath
  • BH31 – Verwood, Three Legged Cross