The Constructor

Concrete Wall Construction Process Including Materials

Concrete Wall Construction Process Including Materials

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Construction of concrete walls is a crucial phase in building construction. It is constructed as a load bearing structure to transfers loads from floor to the wall below or to the foundation, in addition to divide spaces in multi-storey buildings. Moreover, concrete wall is a desirable structural element in earthquake prone areas since it exhibit satisfactory performance during earthquakes. Therefore, it greatly controls the safety of the building. That is why considerable cautions shall be practiced during its construction. Finally, apart from proper construction process, materials used for concrete wall construction play major role to improve the performance of the wall during its life span.

Materials used in Concrete Wall Construction 

There are different types of materials used in the construction of concrete walls. These materials need to be conform with applicable codes and specifications like requirements of ACI 318-14:
  1. Cements; different types of cements are available, and Portland cement is most famous one.
  2. Aggregate
  3. Sand
  4. Admixtures
  5. Steel Reinforcement
  6. Formwork materials; wood, steel, aluminum, plastic, a composite of cement and foam insulation, or composite of cement and wood chips

Equipment used in Concrete Wall Construction 

  1. Concrete Mixing and Delivery machinery
  2. Concrete compaction and finishing equipment
  3. Safety accessories for workers

Concrete Wall Construction Process

1. Reinforcement Placement

Generally, if wall thickness is smaller than 100 mm, then reinforcement bars are installed in one layer. However, reinforcement bars shall be placed in two layer if wall thickness is greater than 200 mm. Steel bars are placed horizontally and vertically in the wall in a grid pattern according to the design drawings. Designated steel bar size, spacing, and concrete cover shall be provided with highest possible accuracy. Reinforcement bars are placed on the tension side of the wall. After the reinforcement is completely placed then formwork fixing operation starts.

Fig. 1: Fixing Horizontal Reinforcement of Concrete Wall

Fig. 2: Vertical Reinforcement of Concrete Wall

At construction joints, steel bars shall be extended for continuous resistance. Moreover, it splices with the rebar on the other side, overlapping for a specified distance. Similar overlap should be provided for reinforcement bar ends and steel bar that turns a corner.

Safety Tips Considered During Reinforcement Placement

There are certain advices which need to be considered during reinforcement placement for to maintain the saftety of workers:

Fig. 3: Plastic Caps Placed on Extruded Steel Bars for Safety Reason

2. Formwork of Concrete Wall

3. Construction Joints in Concrete Walls

4. Concrete Production

Concrete should be produced in batching plants under strict quality control, and convey it to site using suitable transportation means like transit mixers.

Fig. 7: Concrete Production

5. Pouring Concrete 

However, if self-compacting concrete is used, then only pin vibrator is employed for concrete compaction. Therefore, no internal vibration is required to compact self-consolidated concrete.

Fig. 8: Pouring Concrete

6. Removal of Formworks

Formworks of concrete walls can be removed 1-2 days after the concrete placement is ended. The removal of concrete wall formworks shall be performed carefully. In residential houses, early removal of formworks can be obtained by hot air curing / curing compounds. This will increase the pace of construction.

Fig. 9: Removing Formworks of Concrete Walls

7. Curing Concrete Wall

Fig. 10: Curing of Reinforced Concrete walls

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