14 Different Types of Concrete

Author

Published

Adam Bombini

November 12th 2020

From bridges, parking lots, and roads to malls, sound walls, and dams, concrete can be found everywhere around us. It’s the most commonly used building material due to its durability and superior quality, as well as the fact that it’s safe and healthy for building occupants. For these reasons, it’s a critical building material in modern-day construction, especially for structural work. 

There are many different types of concrete, which are all used in construction for various reasons and in various applications. 

1. Precast Concrete

This type of concrete is made in a controlled factory setting and manufactured according to specific design requirements. The concrete products are created off site and then transported to the construction site to be installed. 

Precast concrete is commonly used for walls, staircases, concrete blocks, and poles. Because the concrete is manufactured in a controlled environment and undergoes a series of quality control tests, it’s known to be extremely high quality

2. Reinforced Concrete

In this type of concrete, reinforcements are added to the concrete before it cures to make it stronger. These reinforcements are known as rebar and can include steel rods, cables, or wires. Rebar helps resist tensile forces. Reinforced concrete is widely used in modern construction as a key building material in buildings, roadways, and bridges. 

3. Prestressed Concrete

Large concrete projects often rely on prestressed concrete units. During the manufacturing process, prestressed bars or tendons are placed at the ends of the structural unit, which is then put into compression once the concrete cures. This special technique makes the lower section stronger against tensile forces. 

This type of concrete is found in bridges, roofs, and heavy-loaded structures. 

4. Pervious Concrete

This concrete allows stormwater to drain into the ground, which is why it’s commonly used in driveways and pavements. 

5. Limecrete 

Rather than cement, limestone is used to prepare this type of concrete. Limecrete is commonly used for vaults, domes, and floors. 

6. Normal Strength Concrete

Cement, sand, and aggregates are mixed using a 1:2:4 ratio to create normal strength concrete. It’s used for buildings and pavements that don’t require high tensile strength. Because it cannot withstand wind loading or vibration stresses, it isn’t used for many other types of structures. 

7. Plain Concrete

Using the same 1:2:4 ratio of cement, sand, and aggregates as normal strength concrete, plain concrete has the same strength challenges. However, it’s durable and also used in dam construction. 

8. Rapid-Set Concrete

This concrete is ideal for winter applications when your options are limited to due the cold weather. As the name suggests, this rapid-set concrete has faster set times and is resistant to low temperatures. 

9. Lightweight Concrete

This low-density concrete is made using lightweight aggregates, including pumice, scoria, clays, perlite, vermiculite, and expanded shales. It’s commonly used to protect steel structures and to build building blocks and long-spanning bridge decks. 

10. Vacuum Concrete

This type of concrete has a high water ratio in the concrete mix. A vacuum pump is used to remove excess water from the mix without waiting for the concrete to cure. This vacuuming process allows the concrete product to strengthen in approximately 10 days.

11. Air Entrained Concrete

This type infuses air, foam, or gas into up to 6% of the concrete. The microscopic air cells this process creates helps relieve the concrete’s internal pressure and allows space for water to expand when it freezes.

12. Polymer Concrete

This type of concrete reduces the volume of voids in the aggregates by having the aggregates bond with the polymer rather than cement. 

13. High-Density Concrete

High-density concrete is made from high-density aggregates like crushed rocks. It’s most frequently used to resist radiation. For this reason, it’s used to construct atomic power plants.

14. Pumped Concrete

Primarily used to create the upper floors of high-rise buildings, pumped concrete is discharged via a pipe to the required area. It’s also used to build super flat floors, roadways, bridges, and swimming pools. 


There are many other types of concrete, including ready-mix, glass, and asphalt concrete. Our experts will help your choose the right concrete for your project.

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