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Old 12-13-2009, 04:07 PM   #1
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soft concrete-10 days old-now what?

Weather was turning cold when I was running last of concrete floor for a basement that is all open yet. We ordered and they put 1% calcium into the mix and it seemed to get hard and set up faster. My mason contractor said it would 'set' in a couple hours and then all will be well. Didnt need heat it would be just fine.

Fast forward 10 days now since pouring it and weather took a dump,,snowed a foot,,,and got pretty cold for this time of year. It has been below zero lots of nights,,one night -11,,one night 50 mph wind gusts giving a chilling effect on top of -2 temp.

So now my last run stuff is like jello and can still be sunk into with footwear. Is there hope for this green jello??Or does it have to be replaced?? any other 'help' it can use?? (heat doesnt stay inside since there are 10 big holes where the wind blows thru,,,the beams are still there to support it)

I do have one of those large 'Knipco' heater that runs on kerosene and a couple LP heaters.

Related wise,,,can the 'missing block' be patched in(where the support beams are now??) and finished in such weather?? 'winter came a tad early this year!!'


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Old 12-13-2009, 04:20 PM   #2
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If your concrete has not begun to set after 10 days, it will almost certainly have to be replaced. Come Spring.


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Old 12-13-2009, 05:00 PM   #3
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Was there any protection (heat, poly, insulated blankets, etc.) for the slab to allow it to cure under the conditions you described.

Even with minimal protection, the natural chemical reaction of cement and water should give some kind of strength and not result is "mush". If the concrete has not frozen, it can continue to cure when the conditions have improved.

Keep in mind that a "wind chill" is just an air temperature effect on skin and not a measure of the concrete temperature that really controls curing. Protection of the concrete lets the natural hydration continue which will preserve the energy and promote more curing and qucker strength gain.

what does a "missing block" have to do with a concrete slab? - and what are the support beams?

Is it a slab on grade or a real basement?

If it is actually "mush" as you described, it probably will need to be replaced if you have proof and more than just an opinion. You hired the contractor and may have controlled what he could do for extras depending on the weather.
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Old 12-13-2009, 05:29 PM   #4
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check your last ticket see if they sent your speced concrete
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Old 12-13-2009, 08:08 PM   #5
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this house was an existing house that used to have a crawl space. It was jacked up on beams and a block full basement was built under the whole house. Only a very small corner of the basement floor is affected. I talked to the finisher of it tonight and he NEVER ever heard of anything like that happening and he has been finishing concrete for 40 years. he said it was set and getting hard within 2 hours of pouring it,,,but it never finished hardening. He wants to see it too. Anyway,,,goes to prove if it can happen to anybody it can happen to me!!! This was 6 and 1/2 bag mix with fiber mesh in it with the 1% calcium. I would have fired up the heaters and lettem blow all day,,but they talked me out of it,,,said it will be just fine!!! least its only like a 1 and a half yard pour area,,,but the mess of it all next spring,,,yikes

Thanks for all your replies,,it means alot to me.
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Old 12-14-2009, 05:01 AM   #6
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never had it happen to us, either - then again, we always had heated conc &/or heat & blankets if placing under those conditions,,, sounds as if it froze solid w/o any protection,,, sure - you can repair/replace it even while its cold - just keep in mind what protection you'll need.
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Old 12-14-2009, 05:51 AM   #7
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Ayuh,... At this point,... I'd tent it with plastic,+ put the heat to it,..
You've got Nothing to loose...
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Old 12-14-2009, 12:59 PM   #8
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Some understanding:
I found carbon dioxide interesting! Hope it works out!
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