Pour, Set, Cure, Repeat! How Contractors Make Concrete Walls

Posted on: 16 November 2016

Concrete is not exactly a substance that readily creates vertical forms. Therefore, concrete wall contractors have some special techniques for making concrete do the unimaginable. If you need concrete walls of your own, or you are just curious about how concrete walls are made, here is a little more information to satiate your curiosity.

Vertical Concrete Forms

The first step in creating a concrete wall is to create a concrete form. This is typically done by first building a wire or wooden fence-like structure with metal posts. A second "fence" is built close to the first. Both of these "fences" have their horizontal bars on the outsides. This creates an open space between them where the wet concrete will be poured. The "fences" have become the vertical concrete form.

Other concrete forms may use rebar, cinder blocks and/or metal forms to create structures into which the concrete can be poured. All of these forms, regardless of type, are constructed vertically and constructed prior to pouring any concrete. If anything needs to be removed just after the concrete is poured, the objects have to be removed before the concrete sets.

Setting the Concrete

The concrete will need several minutes, several hours, or several days to set, depending on the type of concrete used and the moisture content in the concrete. While the first concrete wall is setting, the contractor's crew builds the form for the wall next to it. This process continues until a complete wall is formed and comes to the end of the space where the wall has to turn a corner or stop. At this point, the forms that made the first couple of sections can be removed, as the concrete wall here has fully set.

Building Up

If the concrete wall has to go higher, the contractor will wait until the wall sections have set. Then he/she will build concrete forms up from the base wall before more concrete is poured to fill this form and adhere to the wall section under it. At this point, rebar or steel beams are a necessity, since the higher the wall is built, the more weight and sway the concrete will have. The rebar or steel beams help hold the higher concrete walls in place and give them added strength. Each section is cured before adding to it and repeating the process all over again to create a new section of concrete wall.