FOUNDATIONS & SLABS
Concrete Foundations & Slabs Must Be Adequately Designed Before They Are Put in Place
Every building structure requires foundations and slabs to make the property stable, long lasting, and usable. Concrete foundations & slabs must be laid by professional construction companies who erect buildings, and to the specifications decided by design engineers.
Concrete is a material that is resilient and easy to mold, while its cost is affordable. To lay concrete for foundations and slabs you need to prepare a formwork of the shape you want these structures to take, lay in any steel reinforcement bars that designers require, and arrange to pour the concrete, which can be mixed at the site, or obtained from ready-mix plants. A concrete foundation will require you to excavate the soil to a depth that is again decided by engineers. This depth can depend on the analysis of the soil, the expected loads on the building and other factors. Concrete foundations can at times be capping that is cast around the tops of piles, in places where heavy loads are expected, or the soil bearing capacity is inadequate.
Concrete foundations can be of many types, ranging from just mass concrete of adequate thickness, in the form of footings for columns, beam and slab arrangements, or slabs on grade. There are many other types of foundations that may be required as per the requirements of the structure that is to be erected. Most foundations are laid on a bed of gravel, or a lower grade of concrete. Foundations may also need waterproofing protection in the form of chemicals or membranes, in order to extend the life of the foundation, that can be affected by groundwater.
Slabs are a common element in all parts of any concrete structure used for a building. They can make part of floors and ceilings for multistoried structure or ground level slabs and roofs of single-story structures. It is essential that the work of concrete foundations and slabs is completed in any building structure before any work is undertaken to put in partition walls and do other finishing work. Slabs of concrete at ground level have to be solid and work on them must be undertaken after the foundation is completed and the structure brought up to the required level. They may require dam proofing underneath to prevent moisture getting into the building from the soil beneath the slab, through capillary action. Slabs at upper levels need to be supported on a framework of columns and beams, or span required distances between brick or other supporting side walls. Slabs can even be precast and erected later after the support structure is completed.
Concrete foundations and slabs form the essential elements of any building, and require strict attention to quality and design, as per prevalent building codes. Besides the actual work of laying the concrete, their usefulness to any structure will depend on the correct design factors based on the usage to which the building is to be put. Superimposed loads must be taken into account for the design based on this usage. These loads are transferred to the soil, and soil bearing capacities can play a part in foundation and slab design.