You have decided to start building a factory-built home! From the very beginning of this great project, you will need to choose the type of foundation you want to have. choisir le type de fondation Once you receive your official foundation plans, you will need to send them to your excavation and foundation contractor. Here are some important things to consider so that the realization of your home foundation project goes smoothly! Learn more about the formwork method for your foundation and the curing of concrete, and find out how to ensure a quality foundation for your house.
What is the formwork method for your foundation?
The formwork method refers to the use of an assembled mold device that holds the concrete together when pouring a foundation. Forms are usually made of wood or metal. It is becoming increasingly popular to do formwork with “Nudura” or “Integraspec” type insulation.
This method, which replaces the wood molds with rigid insulating foam molds, provides interior and exterior insulation of the foundation, which helps maintain the heat of the concrete in colder periods. With this method, the foundation is less frequently exposed to temperature variations, increasing its durability and limiting cold infiltration. This is the best practice to use for a sustainable, economical and ecological house! maison durable, économique et écologique!
What is concrete curing for your foundation?
A concrete cure is the chemical process by which concrete achieves the specified strength and durability. From the moment the mixing of concrete dust and water is initiated, the curing process begins. For this reason, the delivery of the concrete must be done within a short time. To promote effective curing, it is essential to have the right amount of water required. The outside temperature and the relative humidity of the environment must also be adequate.
Within the first three days of pouring the concrete into the formwork, the concrete will reach 40% of its strength, depending on its chemical composition. After seven days, the concrete should have reached 70% of its strength. In theory, the suggested period for a complete cure of the concrete is 28 days! But, in real time, the concrete will have reached 100% of its strength after 14 days.
In some situations, curing must be extended or controlled. The environment in which the work is performed is critical, especially in colder weather! Under these conditions, the concrete dries out quickly due to the lower humidity level. If the environment causes rapid drying at high temperatures during the summer, it will be necessary to control the concrete moisture.
How to ensure a quality foundation for your home
Depending on the season and the outside temperature, the concrete of your foundation can freeze or even crack. In general, the temperature of the concrete during the pour should be between 10°C and 25°C. Let’s see what environmental control methods to adopt depending on the outside temperature.
Construction during a cooling or thawing period
If the construction of your house is planned during the winter la construction de votre maison est prévue durant l’hiver and that weight will be applied to the foundation (the weight of a house, for example), the cure must be completed before even continuing the work. To do this, one or more of the following methods should be used:
- Cover the concrete with insulating blankets to retain the heat and humidity of the concrete after it is installed in the formwork. You can use this method on cool nights when the temperature drops close to 0°C;
- Create a controlled environment with tarps and install a heating system to maintain temperature. You can use this technique when the temperature is below 0°C at any time;
- Extend the curing time to ensure the strength and durability of the concrete. If necessary, you can use this method in combination with the two previous ones!
Under conditions where the temperature would drop below 5°C, the concrete can freeze. There is no problem with the concrete freezing if there is no weight on the foundation until the concrete has cured, which is when spring arrives. You should not heat the foundation of your home, as this will cause it to cure. It should be done naturally during the thaw period!
Construction during the summer period
If the construction of your home is scheduled for the summer period, take advantage of the opportunity before it gets too hot! Indeed, no environmental control method is necessary if the outside temperature is above 5°C. You will also have optimal conditions to allow a perfect curing process of the concrete!
On the other hand, if the concrete is exposed to high and dry temperatures, continuous watering of the concrete may be required or the installation of damp sheets to supply the concrete with water.
In other words, the construction of your foundation is a crucial step in your factory-built home, for which several details must be taken into consideration. Among other things, we suggest that you choose your excavation and foundation contractor carefully! Good expertise is the key to a quality home.
Our Maison Usinex team can, of course, accompany you in this important step. Make an appointment now to discuss it with our experts.