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What is the difference between concrete and liquid screed?


If you are new to the world of concrete, then you’d be forgiven for not knowing the difference between ready mix concrete and liquid screed; after all, both are made from a mixture of aggregate, water and cement. However, both concrete and liquid screed are very different in their texture and in what they are used for.

How is liquid screed different from ready mix concrete?

What is ready mix concrete made of?

Ready mix concrete is prepared at a plant to each clients individual specifications using a calculated mixture of aggregates, water and cement, combined with any desired additives to achieve the required result, such as enhanced strength or faster curing times.

The aggregates used in ready mix concrete, usually gravel and crushed stone, typically measure up to 20mm in diameter. These larger aggregates give strength that makes is more suitable for structural building jobs.

What is liquid screed made of?

Liquid screed also contains aggregates, water and cement, however, what makes liquid screed different from ready-mix concrete is the amount and size of the aggregates used. 

Using smaller and fewer aggregates (between 5-6mm) results in a smoother consistency and easier flowability, making the screed closer to a liquid than a solid.

What are ready mixed concrete and liquid screed used for?

Due to their different consistencies, concrete and liquid screed are used for different purposes in construction.

What is ready mix concrete used for?

Ready mix concrete is used for mostly external applications in structural foundations, pathways, shed basesdriveways, fences, paving, walls, footpaths and anywhere else where a strong and long-lasting result is of the utmost importance.

What is liquid screed used for?

Liquid screed on the other hand, is only used internally and is used to create a smooth finish. The flowability of liquid screed means you don’t have to worry about any lumps and bumps on your flooring and can be used to create a protective layer over an existing concrete floor.

Liquid screed can also be used to make the most of an underfloor heating system, as its composition means that it lays flush against pipework in a way that regular ready mix screed would not, eliminating air bubbles and maximising conductivity.

Are you looking for ready mix concrete or liquid screed for your DIY or commercial concreting  project? We can supply you with quality ready mix concrete and liquid screed tailored to suit your requirements. Don't hesitate to contact us to discuss your project with us 0117 958 2090.