Concrete delivery systems are designed to add convenience, improve efficiency, and lower costs. However, each of these goals can only be achieved when the delivery system is operating without error. These delivery systems are designed with durability and long-term use in mind, so oftentimes, the source of a problem is human error. If you experience an issue with your concrete delivery system, learn more about some of the operator errors that could be to blame.
All concrete mixes conveyed through a delivery system must have the correct water balance. If the mixture does not have enough water, it will harden or solidify too quickly. The pockets of solidified concrete will then, in turn, prevent the mixture from flowing out of the delivery chamber correctly.
In addition to the intended use of the concrete, the weather conditions also play a factor in the process of determining the appropriate water balance. For example, when it's very hot or dry, the water in the concrete mixture will need to be higher than on a cold or humid day. Failure to keep these factors in mind will lead to problems.
In the same manner that the mixture of concrete is largely based on its intended use, how the delivery system should be set up is also dependent on this factor. Take delivery in a high-rise building, for instance.
If the appropriate type of flexible hose is not used and the delivery system is not set to the correct pressure level, some of the concrete will make it to the top, and some of it will backflow. The result of this backflow is often a clog or obstruction. The operator must be able to look at the job and then determine what adjustments need to be made to ensure the delivery system can accommodate those needs.
Failure to Clean
Concrete is intended to dry; there is no way around this process. Concrete will follow this process no matter where it sets, including the delivery chamber, or pipeline, of the system. If the system is not cleaned correctly after each use, the remnants from the previous concrete will set and dry.
Depending on how much concrete was left behind, the area of set concrete could be large enough to completely obstruct the pipeline and prevent any of the new mixture from coming out. The operator responsible for the machine should also make sure that it has been cleaned correctly at the end of each day.
While human error is a common reason for an operating error, it's not the only reason. Take your time to thoroughly research the source of the problem to ensure you find the correct resolution.