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There's no substitute for testing when it comes to checking the strength of your building materials

by , 22 August 2014
What kind of concrete do your site managers tell your employees to use? Is it good quality? Will it be strong enough and tough enough to hold the building you're constructing? You won't know the answers to those questions while it's still in its bag in powder form.

That's why, you have to do strength testing on all your concrete support structures as your building process goes along.

This can help you avoid disasters such as the Tongaat Mall collapse or this week's Meyersdal building collapse.

So ensure you do these four different types of tests on your concrete support structures...


Do these four tests to ensure your concrete support structures are strong enough for the job

1. Hammer test
You can get speciallised hammers that apply a certain level of force to your concrete support structure. This test's the force the concrete can withstand. You can also do a rebound hammer test. This tests the rebound strength of the concrete.
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2. Pullout Test 
In this test you embed a metal shaft with a larger head into fresh concrete. The tip of the shaft must stick out so you can grab it. The test then measures how much force it takes to pull it out.
3. Windsor Probe Testing 
This tests how the support structure withstands when you fire a hardened steel probe at the column.
4. Maturity Method 
This tests how strong the concrete by determining its temperature.

Here's what to look for when you do these strength tests

You must look for:
- How much pushing pressure the concrete can withstand;
- How much pulling pressure the concrete can withstand;
- How much impact pressure the concrete can withstand; and
- How much heat the concrete can withstand.
This will help you determine if the concrete is strong enough to support the weight of your whole building.

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There's no substitute for testing when it comes to checking the strength of your building materials
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