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Pouring, Placement And Maintenance: Five Tips for Protecting Precast Concrete Planters From Winter

Posted by on Mar 5, 2015 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

You love the look, versatility and durability of precast concrete planters, but before you invest in them, you want to ensure that they last as long as possible. In most cases, concrete lasts longer than almost any other material you could choose for your planters, but there are ways that you can boost its durability even in the face of extremely cold weather. Here’s what you need to know about helping concrete survive the cold: 1. Hire a precast concrete contractor who understands cold weather concreting The conditions under which your concrete is poured hugely affect its long term sustainability. If you want your planters to last, you need to ensure you hire a precast concrete contractor who fully understands cold weather concrete pouring. Cold weather is defined as three or more days in a row during which the average temperature is below 40 degrees. If you are pouring concrete in temps this low, you need to find a sheltered area where the temps are above 50 degrees, and you need to ensure that the precast structure does not freeze until the concrete reaches a strength of at least 500 psi. If it can reach that level without first freeing, it will be protected from future free cycles. Before hiring a precast concrete contractor, ask him or her about his or her cold weather strategies and how he or she prevents early age freezing in his or her concrete. 2. Reduce water exposure and ensure drainage The amount of water used to mix precast concrete determines how well it can handle freezing and thawing cycles. Talk with your contractor about how much water he or she plans to use in the mixing process. Ideally, the water to cement ratio should be as low as possible. Then, consider how you are going to deal with water after the planter is complete. 3. Keep your planter away from drips If snow or rain falls into your planter, it can eventually freeze and expand, and the expansion can crack your concrete. To avoid this, you need to have adequate drainage in the base of your planter. If possible, you should also move your planter away from areas where it may experience any amounts of water flowing or dripping into it. As anyone who has seen a canyon knows, even a small trickle of water can change rock over time. You do not want divots in your concrete where it has been hit repeatedly with drips of water. To that end, keep your precast concrete planters away from leaks in the gutters or places where icicles tend to form. 4. Apply a waterproof sealant In addition to the placement of your planter and the conditions under which it is poured, you should also think about sealants. If you are having a precast concrete planter commissioned, talk with your concrete contractor about the best type of sealant, and have him or her apply it for you. However, if you already have your planters, you can apply sealant on your own. There are sealants that protect against the weather as well as ones that help with crack repair if you already have issues with cracking. As an added bonus, you can even add fun colors or stains with some concrete sealants. 5. Avoid using salt...

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