Introduction: Pour Concrete

A simple guide to pouring concrete! This instructable is more for small pads. However, the techniques are pretty much the same as large ones. The large pads just have a few extra steps. I hope you enjoy the instructable and post in the comments if you have any questions.

Step 1: Tools and Supplies

1. Pre-mixed concrete
2. Wheelbarrow
3. Concrete trowel
4. Rebar
5. Rebar ties
6. Shovel
7. Mag float
8. Level
9. Measuring tape
10. Dobies
11. Hammer- if needed
12. Drill hammer- if needed

Step 2: Grade Your Area

You'll need to grade your dirt to ensure you poured the concrete deep enough.

1. Remove or add dirt to your pad until you're 4 to 5 inches deep. The measurement should be from where the top of the concrete will be to the dirt level.

2. You can set heights with wood boards on large pads. On smaller pads, you can just place a level across for your height.

Step 3: Place Rebar Into Walls, If Needed.

You'll drill a hole into the sides of the walls, if needed. So if you're pouring your concrete into a similar area like ours then you'll need to place rebar into the existing cement.

1. Drill 5" inwards into the wall with a 1/2" drill hammer bit.

2. Grab #4 rebar and place into the hole. Hit the end of the rebar with a hammer until rebar is inserted the 5".

Step 4: Install Rebar

Place your rebar in a crisscross fashion.

1. Place your rebar 16" to 18" apart from each other.

2. Tie the rebar at the crisscross sections.

3. Also, tie the rebar from the wall to the parallel rebar if needed.

4. Remove 2 inches of dirt underneath the rebar. You need the concrete to surround the rebar for strength.

5. Add dobies to ensure the rebar is lifted. The rebar should be around 2 to 3 inches from where the top of the concrete will be.

Step 5: Pour Concrete

1. Make your concrete. Grab pre-mixed concrete and place into a wheelbarrow. Add water till your concrete is pretty wet.

2. Dump the concrete into your area. Use a woodboard to flatten the top of the concrete for height. It doesn't have to be perfect, but should pretty even.

3. Grab your mag float and start smoothing out your concrete. Add concrete to low areas and holes to fill in voids.

4. Wait till the concrete starts to harden. Constantly smooth the concrete with the concrete troul over the next few hours.

5. Once the concrete is dry and smooth enough then let it dry completely.

Step 6: Congrats!

Congrats! You're done. This instructable is for small pads. If you do a large pad then you'll need to place cuts into your concrete to ensure it doesn't crack. However, you need a giant concrete saw. So, you can hire someone to place these cuts at a pretty cheap price. I hope you enjoyed the instructable and make sure to subscribe.

Comments

author
pfred2 made it! (author)2016-03-07

I have poured a lot of concrete and while your method may work, it is not how the professionals usually do it. If we need to tie rebar into existing concrete we epoxy it in. We also never pour right on soil. We always pour on a crushed stone base. A vapor barrier is nice to have too. Also, we usually do not use rebar for pads. Rebar is more for foundations. We use wire mesh. Roll it out upside down, so it doesn't spring back up on you. The hard part of pouring concrete is finishing it too. You want a power trowel, or helicopter to do that. You need to bull float the concrete after you skreed it too. Don't forget your expansion, and control joints either.

author
midnightprophet made it! (author)midnightprophet2016-08-14

Three questions: Could I use fibers in the concrete like a countertop?

My basement is all cracked out. Could I pour multiple small pads to replace it? So over a period of time; do one a month or something

Does the rebar have to tie back to the house?

author
beaujgraham made it! (author)beaujgraham2016-03-07

Hey pfred2,

Thanks for responding to my instructable. This pour was for a foundation at a commercial job site. I agree with the epoxy, but have never had a problem pouring concrete without using it. However, we do use epoxy on most job. Our company does do follow up to ensure the highest quality of work. I was writing this instructable for the normal homeowner to learn about the basics of pouring. However, we do not ever use wire mesh. We believe that rebar is stronger and get surrounded by the concrete better. I've done to many demo jobs where the wire mesh drops below and doesn't strengthen the concrete. We did bull float this concrete, but we didn't add joints due to it being a foundation. We have to remember that their is always more than one way to complete the job

author
rvse7en made it! (author)rvse7en2016-03-08

Though there may be a somewhat better enveloping of the steel reinforcements, the use of wire mesh is recommended to control shrinkage. Using high diameter rebars instead of wire mesh with the same area of steel, even though it would ensure similar bearing capacity in both cases in theory, since there would be a great area without steel reinforcements, this may lead to shrinkage cracking and thus decreased load bearing capacity.

The lowering of the wire mesh can be a problem. If it drops to form level, there is no way it will correctly reinforce concrete. I suggest you use more spacers to prevent this. Or you could always pour self-compacting concrete. It is more expensive due to the greater cement and superplasticizer content to increase consistence, but there is no need to vibrate it, it will envelop all reinforcements and will give you an excellent smooth finish.

Also, though some pour concrete directly to a granular stone base, it is always preferable to pour it on a less permeable material (geotextil or vapour barrier) to prevent loss of water to the ground. This would cause weakening of the concrete since it would lose water that would hydrate the cement.

author
beaujgraham made it! (author)beaujgraham2016-03-08

Hey rvse7en,

Thanks for responding. We weren't worried about shrinkage of the concrete because it was a pour back. We had to make it ADA compliment. . Also, load bearing isn't an issue because the inside will be a clothing store. The concrete is going to be covered, so cracks will be hidden. We are based out of California, so we are known for our ground moving. We need that rebar strength over the wire mesh. The method we used was approved by the head contractor, a concrete contractor, and another general B contractor. It's a commercial job, so it has to be effective and cheap.

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Bio: Hey everyone! My name is Beau. I'm a father, a diy lover, and a partner in a construction company. I started learning the construction ... More »
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