Concrete paving slabs
Thanks to the development of the construction industry, we receive new and improved old materials for roads and decoration. Once upon a time, concrete tile was an expensive and not very durable material. They forgot about it for a while, and only thanks to the progress and development of the chemical industry, new technologies for its manufacture appeared. Currently, concrete paving slabs are used both for finishing paths in city parks and for private houses.
What is a concrete paving slab?
There are three concrete stone manufacturing technologies, each of which gives us a material with special characteristics.
- For manufacturing, a combination of molds and a vibrating table is used. This technology is called vibration casting. A ready-made mixture of concrete and additives is poured into the molds, then they are placed on a table that is constantly vibrating. This makes it possible to compact the mixture. After aging on a vibrating table, the molds with the mixture are sent to solidify for two days in a warm place. The finished tile has a smooth and shiny surface. This type of production is usually used by small enterprises. Relatively inexpensive production, if desired, can be reproduced at home.
- The second way is to use molds. This time, a mixture of concrete and additives is poured into molds, which are now located on the vibropress. In this case, vibration is combined with pressing the mixture. The disadvantage of this method is that vibration and compression can lead to layering of individual parts of the mixture. This threatens with the fact that it is extremely difficult to achieve the same quality of each element from one batch. But the surface is always rough, which makes walking on the street safer.
- The previous method is somewhat similar to hyperpressing. In this case, we will also pour concrete into molds, now the punch also takes part in the process. The difference is that we will not apply additional vibration. The compression load is much greater, the pressure occurs both on one side and on both sides. This method allows some savings on cement, as compression makes the product strong even with less cement.
Paving slabs on a concrete base
With the tile itself, everything is understood, but what if the old concrete coating remains on the site? Quite often it happens that we need to lay paving slabs on a concrete path. Almost all dachas used to be decorated with concrete. But such a solution is gradually cracking, and the need for an update comes.
There are two ways to work with paving slabs and a concrete path: lay the tiles after adding a new concrete layer, or pour a sand cushion. In the first case, we remove all cracked pieces of the old coating, and in the remaining areas we make notches or small indentations. Then we thoroughly sweep away all the dirt, wet the surface. Now it is already possible to apply a layer of liquid concrete with a reinforcing mesh and lay tiles on top.
There is another method of laying paving slabs on a concrete base, if it has already outlived its own. When using a sand cushion, it is important to install concrete curbs. When the curbs fall into place along the ends of the path, their height should be greater so that after laying the tiles the entire surface becomes level. Then we fill it with sand and start laying the tiles. Often sand is mixed with cement and a little water is added. Experts still recommend dismantling the old tracks, but practice proves that, subject to the rules, the new one is quite strong and durable.