It seems like there are always a few projects around your house that could use a bag or two of cement. (fence post holes, leveling, fire pits) But how do you mix cement? Are there different kinds of cement? How thick or thin do you mix the cement? What is the difference between cement and concrete? How to mix concrete?
Today we are going to answer those questions!
Cement is a mixture of sand and gravel or crushed stone. Concrete is a mixture of cement and “paste” or water in this case. So you basically turn cement into concrete.
However, when you walk into Home Depot you are going to see a million bags of different types of concrete, cement, lime and or leveling compound. You will see bags called Concrete and bags called Portland Cement, lime compounds and other sand mixes and aggregates but we are only going to concentrate on the 40lbs, 60lbs and 80lbs bags of cement/concrete. The only times you would use the others are if you are going to be mixing up your own for a large pour – but then… take our advice and just high a cement truck!
When you pick a bag of cement/concrete just make sure you read the back of the bag to ensure you have picked the right bag for the right job.
There is regular set, rapid set, thin set and leveling. To Fill a form or a hole you will only use regular set or rapid set concrete.
For this project we bought an 80lbs bag of regular concrete mix from Home Depot.
How to Mix Concrete
You will need:
- 80lbs Bag of Cement
- 5 gallon bucket
- Mixing Paddle
- Fill your 5 gallon bucket with 3 inches of COLD water.
- Add 3/4 bag of cement to your water.
Use your mixing paddle and drill and start mixing the cement.
The concrete mixture should be thick. If it is not, add a little bit more dry cement until it’s thicker. Don’t be fooled by the water on the outer edge, it is normal for a very thin layer to be on the edge by the bucket.
Note: If your concrete mixture is runny or soupy it will weaken the concrete.
Pour your concrete into your forms or holes.
Leave it undisturbed for a minimum of 24 hours.
One day we will show you how to use thin set and self leveling compound, but I need to talk The Contractor into ripping out the tile in our laundry room first! He won’t be excited about that “little” project.
Have a great night!
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