Precast concrete buildings are fast becoming a popular choice in the construction industry. There are several reasons for this. Before we discuss them, it is important to understand precast concrete and its applications. So, let’s get started!
Understanding Precast and Its Use
Manufactured in a controlled factory environment, precast concrete is produced using advanced manufacturing techniques. A highly versatile product, precast concrete comes in a range of shapes, sizes, and finishes. Additionally, it has many applications including landscaping, civil construction, and buildings.
By combining quality with speed, precast concrete makes construction projects fast and durable. The durability and reliability of precast concrete is a byproduct of its controlled production. Today, entire buildings are being created by combining architectural and structural precast, pre-stressed components. The design approach of such projects can take several shapes including hollow core or double tee flooring and precast beams and columns.
These beams and columns come with load-bearing precast walls or panelized cladding. Every member of the construction team including the architect, contractor, engineer, and developer can benefit from the use of precast concrete in a construction project. Following is how:
With precast concrete, architects everywhere can ensure a seamless design process and achieve the goals set by the owner of the building under construction.
The use of precast concrete in construction projects makes the job of general contractors at the site easy. This, in turn, ensures a smoother process for the architects and owner in both the short and long term. A construction project involves precast products requires fewer trades to coordinate.
Designing with total precast concrete systems is easy for most structural engineers. Additionally, they benefit from the efficiency and ease of use of precast products.
Compared to steel or cast-in-place concrete construction projects, construction projects involving precast concrete can be completed six to eight weeks earlier. This is a major advantage of using precast concrete in construction projects for developers. The time savings could mean launching a new building project into the marketplace at a time when property prices are sky high or getting it ready for occupancy before or by a specified date.
A high-quality construction material, precast concrete provides construction, quality, design, safety, strength and sustainability benefits to everybody involved in a project as seen above. And, this is one of the reasons precast concrete is fast becoming a popular choice in construction projects.
The Precast Components in a Building
Many different types of precast components are used in a building. Following are some of the major precast components used in a building:
There are two main types of precast beams: internal beams and external beams. Internal beams are precast beams where floor loading is almost symmetrical. On the other hand, external beams are precast beams where floor loading is mostly non-symmetrical.
Normally, each precast column will be continuous to the building’s full height for structures of five floors or less. Two or more columns are braided together for structures greater than five floors. The main types of precast columns include edge columns, internal columns, and corner columns.Edge columns are columns symmetrical in one direction. Internal columns are columns symmetrical in every direction while corner columns are columns that are not at all symmetrical.
Precast Floor Slabs
As the name suggests, precast floor slabs are slabs installed horizontally. There are two main types of precast floor slabs: hollow colored slab and double tee slab.
Precast walls serve two functions: as boxes or walls around lift shafts and staircases, and for solidity. Now, you can categorize walls as cantilever or infill. The former are cavernous beams to which the frame is affixed. The latter are walls that depend on the transferrable composite action with the column frame and beam.
Precast staircases can be constructed in three different ways:
- A single precast unit with all the flights and landings
- Individual precast flights and landings
- Segments of flights and landings made in a single piece
Now that we have covered the precast components present in a building, it is time to look at why the construction companies for sale should opt for precast concrete over traditional solutions.
Why Opt for Precast Concrete Over Traditional Solutions
Having an understanding of precast concrete and its use inbuildings would make you more confident about using it for your construction project. However, to make the decision easy for you, we are going to provide you with all the reasons to opt for precast concrete over traditional solutions.
This is perhaps the biggest reason to choose precast concrete over traditional solutions. Precast concrete is produced in accordance with the relevant quality standards. Additionally, they are produced with uniform consistency as they are manufactured in a tightly controlled factory environment.
Precast solutions enhance worker safety and improve logistics. They do this by removing trades from the construction zone and by ensuring cleaner sites. Generally, precast components do not need to be stored on site as they are positioned into building directly from a crane that lifts them up. This ensures a clean site, which in turn reduces the risk of accidents and injuries on site.
Compared to buildings that use other materials, structures built using precast concrete require less maintenance.
Keep Track of Pricing
The cost of precast structures can be determined early in the process. This is because the production process of precast concrete is short and tightly controlled. Also, to ensure that estimates remain stable, construction team members can quickly reassess changes during design development. With this, the architect, owner, and contractor can be assured that the project budgets will remain mostly stable.
Precast concrete comes in a variety of sizes and shapes. So, by choosing an appropriately sized and shaped precast for your project, you can ensure structural efficiency and optimization.
Time is money. In construction, the more time a project takes to complete, the more its cost will be. Precast concrete can help you meet tight deadlinesby ensuring speedy erection, design, and fabrication. Once the foundations are laid, precast structures are ready to be erected. This is particularly useful when unforeseen delays arise at the site due to several different factors.
A wide range of precast concrete panel styles is available to you. This allows the panels to be produced in a variety of finishes, textures, and colors. This, in turn, provides the designer and other construction team members with endless aesthetic options. By replicating stone, brick, or granite, precast panels can ensure an aesthetically pleasing structure. This too at a fraction of the cost you’d have to incur to do the same with a traditional solution.
Considering the above-mentioned benefits, precast concrete should be an automatic choice over the traditional alternatives available today. This is in the interest of your construction company.