We have seen a lot of changes during the past year in the way construction projects are run. With an increased priority on keeping workers safe, and social distancing, contractors have been forced to identify strategies to keep projects on schedule and running efficiently. At FoxArneson, we have been using precast at our job sites for years — and we know all the ins and outs of doing so. Precast is a concrete product produced by casting concrete in a reusable mold that is then cured in a controlled environment and later transported to the jobsite for installation. As precast becomes more popular in modern construction, it is important to understand the benefits and drawbacks of using this type of modular construction.
Cuts Down Construction Time
Probably the most important benefit of using precast for your project is that it significantly reduces construction time. How? As a modular (or offsite) construction item, precast is ready to be placed as soon as it is on the job site. This means all other pre-construction tasks, from earthwork to surveying, can be completed at the same time the precast is being made in the warehouse.
Another draw to using precast is the price. While many people think it may be more expensive to manufacture the product off-site and transport it, it actually reduces the cost because there are no environmental factors that could push back production or delivery time. Since it is created in a controlled environment, precast is made the right way every time with carefully measured proportions of raw materials.
Precast is often much more durable than traditional concrete. Since it’s made in a controlled environment that constantly utilizes new advances in additive manufacturing, precast can be up to two times more strong than traditional concrete. This new technology also allows for increased permeability, meaning it is slower to break down over time, is more resistant to acid attack, corrosion, impact, and reduces service voids.
Difficult to Modify
Once a precast wall is set, it can be difficult to modify a structural wall without compromising the integrity of the rest of the structure. Once on-site, precast walls must be assembled carefully to ensure strong structural behavior. Typically, assembly requires either a tower or portable crane to assist with heavy lifting.
Since precast is manufactured in a controlled warehouse with advanced technology, it will need to be transported to the job site. The weight of the concrete often can be too heavy for certaintypes of trucks, so you will need to ensure you have the correct truck for transporting your precast. More importantly, the precast needs to remain stable during transport to prevent damage.
FoxArneson has worked with precast concrete for years. Not only do we have some of the best partners, but we have a deep knowledge of the manufacturing and installation processes — making us experts. We understand the complications that come with a construction project, and our goal is to make your experience easier using the best of modern construction technology. Explore our work with precast.