When is the best time of year to lay concrete?
Is there a certain time of year that’s best when it comes to your DIY concreting project? Whether you're looking to build a patio or concrete a driveway, our experts lay out the perfect conditions for concrete installation.
Mild weather is considered best when it comes to ready mix concrete installation – that is, not too hot and not too cold. For this reason, spring and the start of autumn (around September) are considered good times to carry out a DIY concreting project.
Not only can you generally rely on the weather to stay above freezing during these periods, temperatures also aren’t as likely to reach higher than mid-twenties. However, this isn’t an absolute rule; the UK generally has a temperate climate, so there’s a lot of leeway. Still, there are certain conditions you should absolutely try and avoid when pouring ready mix concrete.
Snow & Ice
If there’s snow or ice on the ground, then it’s too cold to pour concrete. Fresh concrete that becomes frozen during the first 24 hours after installation can lose up to 50% of its overall strength, so avoiding pouring concrete in very cold weather is very important.
Generally, if the average daily air temperature is consistently below 10 degrees, then it’s better to wait until later in the year and warmer temperatures.
Whilst there are ways around it, rain is also less than ideal when it comes to pouring concrete. We go into much more detail about the logistics of pouring concrete in the rain here. Simply put, if too much rainwater mixes with a fresh concrete mix, then its overall strength can be compromised. It’s therefore best to wait for a clear day if possible.
Ready mix concrete contains water as an essential component and a higher temperature mean faster evaporation. Hot weather can cause all sorts of problems for freshly laid concrete; not only does surface water evaporate too quickly, potentially causing cracks, the process by which the concrete solidifies is sped up, which means it doesn’t strengthen as much as it should. You can read our top tips about laying concrete in hot weather here.
If you are considering a DIY concreting project this year, our team of concrete specialists can help. We can suggest the best concrete mix for your requirements, and deliver it directly to you on site. Don’t hesitate to contact the team today on 0117 958 2090 for tailored ready mix concrete in Bristol, Newport and the surrounding areas.