Concrete Footings, Slabs, Columns & Beams

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Features of Concrete in Structures
Set out below are some of the principal considerations for reinforced concrete slabs-on-ground, footings and concrete superstructures. Concrete is a mixture of portland cement, sand, stone (called aggregate) and water, which sets hard. It may include various other components which provide colour, increase strength, accelerate hardening, retard hardening, improve fluidity, lighten the structure and many other functions.

Concrete is strong in compression, but weak in tension. i.e. It may crack when pulled apart, but not when squeezed together. Tensile strength is provided to concrete structures by the incorporation of steel reinforcement. Concrete shrinks and thus cracks. The inclusion of steel reinforcement (at close centres) will restrict the width of cracks that for in concrete as it shrinks. Steel reinforcement rusts, expands and spalls the concrete if it is placed too close to the concrete surface or if the concrete does not include sufficient cement to protect the steel.

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General Behaviour of Concrete Structures
When a concrete slab is suspended, it will bend under the action of its self weight and any imposed gravity loads. This will cause cracks to form at the top of the slab over supports and at the bottom of the slab at the centre of the span. It is at these locations the main tensile reinforcement is placed. Note: There is other reinforcement placed in concrete slabs and beams to control shrinkage cracking, support the main reinforcement and to control diagonal shear cracking near supports.

Top face reinforcement at support

Top face reinforcement at support

Top face reinforcement at support

Bottom face reinforcement at centre span

Bottom face reinforcement at centre span

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Basic Concrete Specification
Concrete for House Construction in Rural Villages Concrete shall comply with the Drawings, Building Regulations and relevant Standard (AS 2870). Unless stated otherwise, properties shall be not less than:  Characteristic compressive strength of 20 MPa  Maximum aggregate size of 20 mm  Of sufficient slump to facilitate the nominates means of placement The following site-mix concrete is deemed suitable for footings, slab-on-ground and columns. • • • 1 part portland cement 2 parts clean sand 4 parts crushed stone or gravel

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Basic 20 MPa Concrete Specification
For 1 cubic metre of 20 MPa concrete, the mix should consist of: • • • • 8 bags (40 kg each) of GP or GB portland cement Cement is also available in 20 kg bags, in which case 16 would be required. 0.5 m3 of sand Sand should be clean sharp sand, NOT brickies sand or plasters sand. 1.0 m3 of 20 mm coarse aggregate Aggregate should be clean 20 mm river gravel, crushed aggregate or similar. 220 – 230 litres of water Less water should be used if the sand and aggregate are damp.

Set out below are the typical quantities for lesser volumes of 20 MPa concrete mix.
Source: Cement Concrete & Aggregates Australia

Grade 20 Concrete Mix 1 cement : 2 sand : 4 gravel (by volume) Cement (Number of 40Kg bags) Sand (m3) Gravel [20mm Coarse Aggregate] (m3) Water (litres)

Volume of Concrete (m3) 0.2 2 0.1 0.2 50-60 0.4 3 0.2 0.4 70-80 0.6 5 0.3 0.6 140-150 0.8 7 0.4 0.8 180-200 1.0 8 0.5 1.0 220-230

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Source: Cement Concrete & Aggregates Australia Grade 25 Concrete Cement (40Kg bags) Sand (m3) 20mm Coarse Aggregate (m3) Water (litre) Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd 0.7 180-200 1 9 0.5 0.2 2 0.6 4 6 0.8 8 0.2 0. the mix should consist of: • 9 bags (40 kg each) of GP or GB portland cement Cement is also available in 20 kg bags.4 0. river gravel or similar 200 – 220 litres of water Less water should be used if the sand and aggregate are damp • • • Set out below are the typical quantities for a 25 MPa concrete mix.Basic 25 MPa Concrete Specification For 1 cubic metre of 25 MPa concrete.1 0.2 50-60 Volume of Concrete (m3) 0.5 70-80 140-150 0.5 m3 of sand Sand should be concreting sand or sometimes refined to be sharp sand NOT brickies sand or plasters sand. in which case 18 would be required.8 m3 of 20 mm coarse aggregate It is important that concrete be made from clean 20 mm crushed aggregate . 0.4 0.8 200-220 .3 0.4 0. Care in adding water is the key to a successful mix 0.

In both cases. the concrete footings or beams & slabs will bend. • Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd .Masonry Veneer and Cavity Construction Reactive clay foundations under a building may swell to form a dome or shrink form a dish. thus preempting the formation of any cracks. The design of buildings with conventional masonry veneer and cavity masonry walls involves: • Increasing the stiffness of the footings or beams & slabs Incorporating articulation joints in the masonry walls to “break up” the structure. placing stresses on the superstructure.

Crack Formation in Masonry House Walls As the foundations shrink or swell and the concrete footings (or beam & slab) respond. they will remain intact for small movements. vertical “wide spaced” reinforcement and a continuous horizontal bond beam are capable of cantilevering and spanning large distances without cracking. the most undesirable outcome. • If unreinforced masonry walls have relatively high strength. Unreinforced Masonry Walls • Unreinforced masonry walls of weak masonry may form multiple small cracks. Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd . incorporating steel starter bars. Most likely. but will eventually crack. Reinforced Masonry Walls Connected to Concrete Slab • Single leaf reinforced hollow concrete masonry superstructures built integrally with the concrete footings. this will be a single large crack. the following can occur.

excess water in fresh concrete leads to high shrinkage. while too little water in fresh concrete restricts its flow and makes it hard to compact.Problem of Excessive Water in Concrete Broadly speaking. The problems associated with excessive water are as discussed in the following slides. cracking and loss of strength. Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd .

which remaining moist underneath. The .Excessive moisture in concrete can lead to reduced abrasion resistance of the surface. Abrasion / Surface Dusting . and may exhibit increased risk of reinforcement corrosion and spalling of the surface Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd (concrete cancer). Delamination – If concrete is too wet when finished. . March 2006: Strength – The strength of the concrete.width and extent of cracks will increase as the amount of water is increased. leading to ‘dusting’ and possibly to exposure of the coarse aggregate Durability – Concrete with excess water will be more prone to penetration by water and salts . it could dry and shrink at the surface. Cracking – As water evaporates from concrete during the hardening process. Cement Concrete & Aggregates Australia. there is a tendency for “earlyage cracking” and “drying shrinkage cracking”. causing delamination to occur. can be severely diminished by too much water in the mix. and hence it’s ability to support loads.Problem of Excessive Water in Concrete Reference: Beware of excess water.

Source: Ryan. Longman Cheshire. & Samarin. Water to cementitious content in the range 0. if used) stays the same. with 0. 1992 Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd .Problem of Excessive Water in Concrete Water / Cementitious Content If water is added to concrete after it leaves the batching plant.80 is usual for conventional concrete. Thus the ratio of water to cementitious content drops. the amount of cement (and fly ash. A.45 to 0.6 being common.. Australian Concrete Technology. W.G. This graph demonstrates how the strength of concrete drops significantly as the water to cementitious content increases. If just 25 litres of water is added to a cubic metre of fresh concrete. but the amount o f water increases. the water to cemetitious content would increase by approximately 17 % and the compressive strength would drop by approximately 20 %.

A.3. W.2. The Ryan & Samarin recommendation for reinforced footings is 50 mm to 100 mm. A value of 100 mm is now reflected in BCA Volume 2 Clause 3. Historically. and specifications of 80 mm and 100 mm were common.. 1992 Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd . & Samarin. while the recommended slump for pavements and slabs is 50 mm to 80 mm.1 (a) (iii).Problem of Excessive Water in Concrete Specifying Slump One means of controlling the proportion of water in freshly mixed concrete is to specify an upper limit for “slump”. Australian Concrete Technology.G. Longman Cheshire. the choice of permissible slump was the prerogative of the Engineer. Source: Ryan.

The slump test gives an indication of the quantity of water in the fresh concrete. The slump (the distance down from the top of the cone) can be measured.5 mm thick galvanized sheet steel cone Foot plates 100 De-moulded slumped concrete Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd Slump . the shape of the aggregate and the quantity of cement.Problem of Excessive Water in Concrete Slump Test 100 The fluidity of fresh concrete may be measured by the slump test. although slump is also influenced by the grading of the fine and coarse aggregate. Concrete slump is determined by moulding fresh concrete in a 300 mm high steel cone. Handles 300 1. The mould is then removed and the fresh concrete will settle.

From this chart. there is a resulting loss of strength. Cement Concrete & Aggregates Australia.readymix.5 MPa (approximately 7.com.5% in 20 MPa concrete) • If no other adjustments to a mix are made. March 2006: Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd . 25% increase in slump from 80 mm to 100 mm could result in a reduction in strength of approximately1. resulting from excess water. 50% increase in slump from 80 mm to 120 mm could result in a reduction in strength of approximately 25%. This chart shows that as increasing quantities of water are added.The Effect of Excess Water in Concrete http://www.au/Toolbox/DIY/excessWater.Problem of Excessive Water in Concrete Slump The problem is best indicated by the loss in concrete strength.shtml Similar information is available in: Beware of excess water. Source: Readymix . it is clear that: • If no other adjustments to a mix are made.

Provided that no water is added on site.Problem of Excessive Water in Concrete Site Practices Often concrete with an initial slump of 80 mm will stiffen rapidly. there is very little control. “Water must not be added to the mix to increase the slump to a value in excess of that specified”. with a resulting unpredictable increase in the risk of shrinkage. Because the water addition is made on site. and the resulting concrete most often has more water than necessary. concrete may be specified with a 100 mm slump.3. despite BCA Volume 2 Clause 3. which states. The consequence of refusal is the risk of uncompacted and poorly finished concrete. particularly in hot or windy conditions. cracking and low strength. Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd . Concretors will request that “water be added” to the mixer trucks.2. The addition is most often done.1 (b).

Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd . In some cases the reinforcement diameter is too small and the dimensions of bent bars are incorrect.Concrete Problems & Solutions Footing Reinforcement A common footing design is 1000 x 1000 x 500 with 10 mm diameter reinforcement. The diameter. dimensions and position of reinforcement should be inspected before placing concrete.

Concrete Problems & Solutions Pad Footings Do not put too much reinforcement in the footings and ground beams. but not too much reinforcement Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd . It is just a waste of money. Footings and ground beams should have enough.

8 diameter at 200 mm centres) over compacted fill. so should the reinforcement be increased.0 m) should be at least 70 mm thick with at least SL42 steel reinforcement mesh (3. The thickness of slabs-on-ground (that are bigger than 3.0 m x 3. This can lead to cracking and moisture penetration.Concrete Problems & Solutions Thickness and Reinforcement in Concrete Slabs-on-Ground Often concrete slabs-on-ground are only 50 mm thick and do not contain any steel reinforcement. If the thickness is increased. Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd . Australia The thickness of slabs-on-ground should be 100 mm thick with at least SL72 steel reinforcement over compacted fill.

Concrete Problems & Solutions Formwork Edge forms for suspended concrete slabs are often difficult to secure and keep straight. Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd . When permanent steel sheet formwork is used. preformed metal edge forms can also be screwed to the sheeting by short metal straps.

Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd . commonly known as “concrete cancer”.Concrete Problems & Solutions Reinforcement Cover Steel reinforcement must be surrounded with sufficient thickness of well compacted concrete to prevent corrosion of the steel and spalling of the concrete. Suspended concrete roof corrosion (India) Concrete wall corrosion (Australia) Concrete lintel reinforcement corrosion (India) The lapping of welded fabric reinforcement in the top face of a slab will significantly increase the thickness of reinforcement and reduce the cover.

Concrete Problems & Solutions Reinforcement Congestion Congestion of reinforcement within beams. columns and the like reduces the cover and leads to difficulties in compacting the concrete around the reinforcement. Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd . This can cause both corrosion and loss of bond between reinforcement and concrete.

beams. Concrete density can be maximized by adequate mechanical vibration. Although AS 2870 does not make mechanical vibration of residential footings and slab-on-ground construction mandatory.Concrete Problems & Solutions Vibration The strength of concrete members (footings. and columns) is dependent on the density of the concrete. slabs. Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd . it is strongly recommended. Photo: Wacker Mechanical vibration is recommended for all concrete members.

if the concrete has not achieved sufficient hardness.Concrete Problems & Solutions Concrete Finishing Mechanical trowelling is used to produce a fine surface. the mechanical trowel (helicopter) may “dig into” the surface. Photo: Wacker Excessive trowelling will lead to a concentration of bleed water at the surface and eventual dusting and/or abrasion of the surface. Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd . However.

Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd . water-based acrylic or wax-based acrylic.Concrete Problems & Solutions Curing Contractors often neglect the correct curing of slabs. It may be expedient for the Builder to assume responsibility for applying and maintaining the curing system. Sprayed curing compounds require less attention than moistening and covering the slab for an extended period. However. resulting in excessive cracking and/or dusting and abrasion. solvent-based acrylic. Curing compounds should comply with AS 3799 and shall be hydrocarbon. wax-based compounds should not be used in areas requiring the subsequent application of curing adhesives.

Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd . If there is likely to be difficulty in achieving such uniform falls. the slab should provide for uniform falls to wastes and associated pipework.Concrete Problems & Solutions Recesses in Concrete Slabs In order to achieve falls in tiled floors in bathrooms and the like. Such bars should not puncture the membrane. it is preferable to recess the concrete slabs. This recess may be formed after the concrete has been screeded level. it may be advisable to allow for a 40 to 50 mm screed laid subsequently by the tiler in accordance with AS 3958. tile bedding and tiles should be shown on the structural concrete details. The corner position of recesses can be marked by fixing temporary vertical reinforcing bars to the fabric. to ensure that the finished levels are appropriate.1 Appendix A. For large tiled areas. otherwise there will be a lip at the tiled edge. The thickness of the screed (if required)..

Concrete Problems & Solutions Control Joints Control joints in concrete structures should be of a material and detail such that they can accommodate the movement that is expected. Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd .

Concrete Problems & Solutions Termite Barriers Care must be taken to ensure that any termite barrier can be properly located on the finished concrete structure. Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd .

1 To prevent termite penetration. Source: AS 2870 Source: AS 3661.1-2000 Termite management Part 1 New building work places a limit of 1 mm on the permissible width of cracks.Concrete Problems & Solutions Limits on Crack Widths AS 2870 Residential slabs and footings defines the following limiting crack widths. AS 3661. Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd .

Concrete Problems & Solutions Cracking Due to Excessive Retardant Overdosing premixed concrete with retardant will cause excessive cracking and surface defects consistent with the extremely slow hardening. Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd .

Specifications This module provides typical specifications.com Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd . summarised from the Electronic Blueprint. More comprehensive editable building specifications may be downloaded from: www.electronicblueprint.

Slab-on-Ground. Piers Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd . Ground Beams.Specifications – Footing.

Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd . • Moisture and Tree Root Shields • Masonry Fire Protection • Termite protection systems for concrete slab-on-ground construction. • Concrete in retaining walls. and precast concrete pavers. columns and stairs. Piers Scope This section covers the construction of the following concrete members for residential applications: • Concrete footings • Concrete ground beams • Concrete slab-on-ground • Concrete piers. Slab-on-Ground.g. comprising suspended beams. Ground Beams. precast pits and thrust blocks. • Superstructures. such as footings and precast concrete blocks.Specifications – Footing. Other specifications cover: • Concrete residential pavements and driveways • Concrete that is incidental to drainage e. • Concrete that is incidental to segmental paving and landscaping such as edging. slabs.

Piers Relevant Standards • AS 3600 Concrete Structures • AS 3610 Formwork for concrete • AS 3660.1 Pliable building membranes and underlays .Specifications – Footing.2 Termite management – In and around existing buildings and structures – Guidelines • AS 3660. Slab-on-Ground.1 Termite management – New Building work • AS 3660.Materials • AS/NZS 4671 Steel reinforcing materials • AS 2159 Rules for the design and installation of piling (SAA Piling Code) Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd . Ground Beams. mortar and grout • AS 2870 Residential slabs and footings .3 Termite management – Assessment criteria for termite management systems • AS 1379 Specification and supply of concrete • AS 1478.Construction • AS 3799 Liquid membrane-forming curing compounds for concrete • AS 4200.2 Chemical admixtures for concrete.

collapsing soils. which can experience moderate ground movement from moisture changes Class H – Highly reactive clay sites. Note: For deep-seated movements. mine subsidence. landslip. Ground Beams. Piers Definitions Site Classifications (based on AS 2870) Class A – Most sand and rock sites with little or no ground movement from moisture changes Class S – Slightly reactive clay sites with only slight ground movement from moisture changes Class M – Moderately reactive clay or silt sites. typical of dry climates and corresponding to a design depth of suction change equal to or greater than 3 metres. reactive sites subject to abnormal moisture conditions or sites which cannot be classified otherwise. which can experience high ground movement from moisture changes Class E – Extremely reactive sites. the classification Classes M.Specifications – Footing. H-D or E-D. soils. which can experience extreme ground movement from moisture changes Class P – Filled sites including soft or unstable foundation. Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd . soils subject to erosion. H and E shall be modified to M-D. Slab-on-Ground. such as soft clay or silt or loose sands.

600 mm 0.075 mm Percent Passing 90 to 100 60 to 100 30 to 85 15 to 60 5 to 30 0 to 15 0 to 10 Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd . Ground Beams. free from salts.1).300 mm 0. Piers Sand Bedding A bedding sand layer 50 to 100 mm in thickness shall be placed over the compacted soil base to the level of the underside of the slab.75 mm 2. and with the following grading: Sieve 4. Unless stated otherwise.36 mm 1.150 mm 0. Sand bedding shall comply with the relevant Standard (AS 2758. vegetable matter and impurities.Specifications – Footing. Slab-on-Ground.18 mm 0. sand shall be clean.

Piers Vapour Barrier Vapour barriers shall be placed over the bedding sand layer. Slab-on-Ground. Ground Beams. Adhesive tape shall be fixed around pipe penetrations. or polyethylene tape for fixing to higher strength or thicker membranes. vapour barriers shall be not less than medium impact resistance polyethylene vapour barrier 0. In areas of known salt damp. Vapour barriers shall comply with the Drawings. a damp-proofing membrane with high impact resistance is required.Specifications – Footing. Adhesive tape shall be PVC for normal applications. Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd . Building Regulations and relevant Standard (AS 4200). Unless stated otherwise.2 mm thick.

Piers Reinforcement for Concrete Slab on Ground and Footings Reinforcement shall be placed in accordance with the drawings such that the following laps and cover are achieved. low (L) or normal (N) ductility ribbed wires • Fitments -500 MPa. rectangular fabric and trench mesh . Unless stated otherwise.g.500 MPa.0 metre long shall be placed at all re-entrant corners. low (L) or normal (N) ductility ribbed wires • Round bar (e. AS 2870.500 MPa. Ground Beams. Reinforcement Minimum Required Laps Bars Fabric Trench mesh 500 mm 2 cross wires overlapping 500 mm Bar and Fabric Reinforcement Reinforcement shall comply with AS 4671. Slab-on-Ground. fibre reinforcement shall be polypropylene or steel fibres capable of being mixed uniformly throughout the concrete.Specifications – Footing. Fibre Reinforcement Fibre reinforcement used for enhancing toughness and impact resistance of concrete shall comply with the relevant Standard (ASTM A820 Type 1 for steel fibres). Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd . normal ductility (N) • Square fabric. properties shall be not less than: • Deformed bars . Unless stated otherwise. Three N12 corner bars 2.250 MPa round. R250 N10 for dowels) .

Bar chairs shall be placed to give the following clear cover. is used. the bar chair spacing shall be reduced to 800 mm. Where fabric with 7 mm bars at 200 mm centres (SL72). Piers Bar Chairs Bar chairs shall be placed at one metre centres both ways.Specifications – Footing. Ground Beams. Bar chairs shall incorporate wide bases and be placed on metal bases that do not puncture the vapour barrier. • 40 mm in concrete in contact with unprotected ground • 40 mm in concrete exposed externally • 30 mm to a sealed vapour barrier • 20 mm to the internal surface Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd . Slab-on-Ground. or lighter.

properties shall be not less than: • Characteristic compressive strength of 20 MPa (Strength grade N20) • Maximum aggregate size of 20 mm • Of sufficient slump to facilitate the nominates means of placement • Subject to plant control testing. Piers Concrete for slab on ground and footings Concrete shall comply with AS 2870. Unless stated otherwise. Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd . Ground Beams.Specifications – Footing. Slab-on-Ground.

Reinforcement Cover .Off form finish. • Vertical surfaces not exposed in the completed building . Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd . driveways and parking areas at greater than 10% slope .Rubbed back to fill all voids and provide smooth surface.Fine broomed steel float.Specifications – Footing. Ground Beams. Finishing Concrete Concrete surfaces shall be finished as noted below unless specified otherwise. • External paths. When permanent steel sheet formwork is used. • External paths. • Vertical surfaces exposed in the completed building .Edge forms for suspended concrete slabs are often difficult to secure and keep straight. The slab thickness shall be such as to provide both sufficient cover and sufficient effective depth.Steel float.Coarse broomed steel float.The lapping of welded fabric reinforcement in the top face of a slab will significantly increase the thickness of reinforcement and reduce the cover. driveways and parking areas at less than 10% slope . • Floor slabs . Slab-on-Ground. Notes Formwork . All concrete shall be compacted by mechanical immersion vibrator. Piers Placing Concrete Trenches and footing excavations shall be dewatered and cleaned prior to concrete placement so that no softened or loosened material remains. preformed metal edge forms may also be screwed to the sheeting by short metal straps.

Ground Beams. or Ensure that the Contractor correctly applies and maintains the curing system. the slab should provide for uniform falls to wastes and associated pipework. Apply and maintain the curing system. Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd . The thickness of the screed (if required). The corner position of recesses may be marked by fixing temporary vertical reinforcing bars to the fabric. For large tiled areas. Wax-based compounds shall not be used in areas requiring the subsequent application of curing adhesives. Such bars should not puncture the membrane. Notes 1. 2. recess the concrete slabs to avoid a lip at the tiled edge. The Builder shall. it allow for a 40 to 50 mm screed laid subsequently by the tiler. This recess may be formed after the concrete has been screeded level. to ensure that the finished levels are appropriate. Slab-on-Ground. tile bedding and tiles should be shown on the structural concrete details. If there is likely to be difficulty in achieving such uniform falls. Sprayed emulsions require less attention than moistening and covering the slab.Specifications – Footing. Curing Concrete All concrete shall be cured using a sprayed curing compound. Piers Recesses in Concrete Slabs In order to achieve falls in tiled floors in bathrooms and the like.

Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd . 150 or 200 mm slabs. Unless stated otherwise. Stripping Formwork Unless adverse weather or the use of retarders delays the hardening of concrete. Key Joint Form Key joint forms shall comply with the Drawings. key joint forms shall provide keys in 100. a polyethylene foam strip shall be inserted. the minimum stripping time for formwork shall be 3 days. Piers Formwork Formwork shall comply with the relevant Standard (AS 3610). the colour shall be grey. Maintenance The building owner is responsible for the building and site maintenance as detailed in the CSIRO Pamphlet 10-19 Guide to Home Owners on Foundation Maintenance and Footing Performance. Otherwise a PVC capping strip shall be inserted.Specifications – Footing. Unless stated otherwise. Slab-on-Ground. Building Regulations and relevant Standard (AS 2870). Ground Beams. Where a control joint is to be constructed with a flexible sealant. and shall include all required wedges and pegs.

Specifications – Concrete Superstructures Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd .

2 Chemical admixtures for concrete. and • other relevant Regulations. including beams. • other Standards nominated in this specification. columns. mortar and grout • AS 3799 Liquid membrane-forming curing compounds for concrete • AS/NZS 4671 Steel reinforcing materials • AS 3850 Tilt-up concrete construction • AS 1538 Cold formed steel structures code • AS 1397 Steel sheet and strip Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd . Building Regulations and Standards All materials and construction shall comply with the most recent version of: the relevant parts of the Building Regulations: • the Standards referred to therein. Relevant Standards • AS 3600 Concrete Structures • AS 3610 Formwork for concrete • AS 1379 Specification and supply of concrete • AS 1478.Specifications – Concrete Superstructures Scope This section covers the construction of reinforced concrete superstructures. suspended slabs. stairs and walls.

Unless specified otherwise on the drawings. structural laps shall be as follows: N 12 bars N 16 bars N 20 bars N 24 bars Fabric 500 mm 650 mm 800 mm 1100 mm 2 cross wires overlap In slabs. bar chairs shall be placed at one metre centres both ways.Specifications – Concrete Superstructures Reinforcement Reinforcement shall be placed in accordance with the Drawings and the relevant Standard (AS 3600). bar chairs shall provide cover not less than the following: Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd . Unless specified otherwise in the Drawings or Standard.

Specifications – Concrete Superstructures Minimum Cover Requirements for Standard Formwork and Compaction (mm) Characteristic Compressive Strength of Reinforced Concrete Exposure 20 MPa 25 MPa 32 MPa 40 MPa 50 MPa Classification A1 20 20 20 20 20 A2 (50) 30 25 20 20 B2 (60) 40 30 25 B1 (65) 45 35 C (70) 50 Note: These values may need to be increased to comply with the particular Standard. Minimum Cover Requirements for Rigid Formwork and Intense Compaction (mm) Characteristic Compressive Strength of Reinforced Concrete Exposure 20 MPa 25 MPa 32 MPa 40 MPa 50 MPa Classification A1 15 15 15 15 15 A2 (35) 20 15 15 15 B2 (45) 30 25 20 B1 (50) 35 25 C (55) 40 Note: These values may need to be increased to comply with the particular Standard. The values in brackets apply when the exposure is to only one surface. Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd . The values in brackets apply when the exposure is to only one surface.

being industrial and any climate zone members in exterior environments above ground and 1 km to 50 km from the coast. being subject to repeated wetting and drying members in exterior environments above ground and further than 50 km from the coast. in any climate zone members permanently submerged in sea water Exposure Environment C includes : members tidal splash zones Exposure Environment U includes: members in aggressive soils members in soft or running water members in exposures other than those described above Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd . residential footings in non-aggressive soils. members in interior environments fully enclosed within a building except for a brief period of weather exposure during construction. in any climate zone members in fresh water Exposure Environment B2 includes: members in exterior environments above ground and up to 1 km from the coast (excluding tidal splash zones). being non-industrial and temperate climate Exposure Environment B1 includes: members in interior environments in industrial buildings. being non-industrial and tropical climate members in exterior environments above ground and further than 50 km from the coast. members in exterior environments above ground and further than 50 km from the coast.Specifications – Concrete Superstructures In reinforced or prestressed concrete structrures: Exposure Environment A1includes: members in contact with the ground and protected by a damp-proof membrane. being non-industrial and arid climate Exposure Environment A2 includes: other members in non-aggressive soils members in exterior environments above ground and further than 50 km from the coast.

Specifications – Concrete Superstructures Reinforcement Reinforcement shall comply with the relevant Standard (AS 4671). properties shall be not less than: • Deformed bars . Bar chairs shall be placed to give the following clear cover.g. rectangular fabric and trench mesh . Bar chairs shall incorporate wide bases and be placed on metal bases that do not puncture the vapour barrier. • 40 mm in concrete exposed externally • 20 mm to the internal surface Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd .250 MPa round Bar Chairs Bar chairs shall be placed at one metre centres both ways. low (L) or normal (N) ductility ribbed wires • Fitments -500 MPa. or lighter. is used.500 MPa. Where fabric with 7 mm bars at 200 mm centres (SL72). normal ductility (N) • Square fabric. Unless stated otherwise.500 MPa. the bar chair spacing shall be reduced to 800 mm. R250 N10 for dowels) . low (L) or normal (N) ductility ribbed wires • Round bar (e.

Unless stated otherwise. curing compounds shall be hydrocarbon. Unless stated otherwise. Curing Compounds Curing compounds shall comply with the relevant Standard (or AS 3799). The Drawings shall state the required strength and aggregate size for each member. waterbased acrylic or wax-based acrylic. solvent-based acrylic.Specifications – Concrete Superstructures Concrete Concrete shall comply with the relevant Standard (AS 3600). properties for low rise construction shall be not less than: • Characteristic compressive strength of 32 MPa (Strength grade N32) • Maximum aggregate size of 20 mm • Of sufficient slump to facilitate the nominates means of placement • Subject to plant control testing. Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd . Wax-based compounds shall not be used in areas requiring the subsequent application of curing adhesives.

• Vertical surfaces exposed in the completed building .Off form finish. When permanent steel sheet formwork is used. Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd .Edge forms for suspended concrete slabs are often difficult to secure and keep straight.Steel float. Finishing Concrete Concrete surfaces shall be finished as noted below unless specified otherwise. • Vertical surfaces not exposed in the completed building . preformed metal edge forms may also be screwed to the sheeting by short metal straps.Specifications – Concrete Superstructures Placing Concrete Trenches and footing excavations shall be dewatered and cleaned prior to concrete placement so that no softened or loosened material remains. • Floor slabs . The slab thickness shall be such as to provide both sufficient cover and sufficient effective depth. Reinforcement Cover . Notes Formwork . All concrete shall be compacted by mechanical immersion vibrator.The lapping of welded fabric reinforcement in the top face of a slab will significantly increase the thickness of reinforcement and reduce the cover.Rubbed back to fill all voids and provide smooth surface.

If there is likely to be difficulty in achieving such uniform falls. to ensure that the finished levels are appropriate.Specifications – Concrete Superstructures Recesses in Concrete Slabs In order to achieve falls in tiled floors in bathrooms and the like. Such bars should not puncture the membrane. recess the concrete slabs to avoid a lip at the tiled edge. the slab should provide for uniform falls to wastes and associated pipework. it allow for a 40 to 50 mm screed laid subsequently by the tiler. tile bedding and tiles should be shown on the structural concrete details. Notes 1. Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd . This recess may be formed after the concrete has been screeded level. The Builder shall. Apply and maintain the curing system. 2. For large tiled areas. Wax-based compounds shall not be used in areas requiring the subsequent application of curing adhesives. or Ensure that the Contractor correctly applies and maintains the curing system. Sprayed emulsions require less attention than moistening and covering the slab. The thickness of the screed (if required). Curing Concrete All concrete shall be cured using a sprayed curing compound. The corner position of recesses may be marked by fixing temporary vertical reinforcing bars to the fabric.

75 mm. Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd . Stripping Formwork Minimum stripping time for formwork shall be 14 days. No masonry shall be constructed on slabs that are still supported by props.Specifications – Concrete Superstructures Permanent Formwork Formwork shall comply with the relevant Standard (AS 1538.00 mm (as nominated on the drawings) • With 550 MPa yield strength • With a galvanised coating not less 200 gm/m2 (Z200). AS 1397).90 mm or 1. Unless stated otherwise. Formwork Formwork shall comply with the relevant Standard (AS 3610). permanent formwork shall be: • Cold-rolled steel • Manufactured from galvanised steel base material of thickness 0. 0.

Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd .Sample Inspection Schedules This sample inspection schedule defines a minimum level of control that should be exercised by a builder during construction. It is not intended for use by licensed tradesmen. who would need to apply more rigorous inspections. installers or authority inspectors.

.20% + 20mm ..10% +...Construction Checklist Builder: Site: Activity: Cast in-situ Concrete Piers Item or Product Drawings & specifications Pier location Pier diameter Founding material Pier depth Casing (if required) Reinforcement grade Reinforcement diameter Reinforcement spacing Reinforcement laps Reinforcement ligatures spacing Concrete strength Inspection Required Inspect controlled docs Check grid Check hole position Check auger diameter Visual inspection Measure depth or monitor volume Measure diameter Spot check markings Spot check diameter Spot check Spot check Spot check Spot check dockets Accept Criteria Latest issue on site +.10% As specified Hold Witness Hold Hold Hold Hold Hold Hold Hold Hold Hold Hold Hold Hold Witness Date Inspector Comment Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd .50mm +.10% +..10mm As specified As specified +.50mm As specified As specified +...

Slab-On-Ground Item or Product Drawings & specifications Footing width Footing length Reinforcement cover Edge forms Level on sand bed Membrane and tape Reinforcement grade Reinforcement diameter Reinforcement spacing Reinforcement laps Reinforcement ligature spacing Plumbing roughed-in Concrete strength Curing Inspection Required Inspect controlled docs Spot check Spot check Check chair size Check all edges Spot check levels Spot check taping Spot check markings Spot check diameter Spot check Spot check Spot check Check all positions Delivery dockets Spot check Accept Criteria Latest issue on site + 10%.2% As specified +..10% +.10% +.Construction Checklist Builder: Site: Activity: Concrete Footings. Ground Beams. -30mm As specified As specified As specified +...10% +.2% + 10%...20 mm + 10 mm..50 mm As specified As specified Hold Witness Hold Hold Hold Hold Hold Hold Hold Hold Hold Hold Hold Hold Hold Witness Witness Date Inspector Comment Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd ..

50 mm As specified As specified Hold Witness Hold Hold Hold Hold Hold Hold Hold Hold Hold Hold Hold Witness Witness Date Inspector Comment Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd .2% + 10%.2% + 10%.2% As specified As specified As specified +..Construction Checklist Builder: Site: Activity: Concrete Superstructures Item or Product Drawings & specifications Beam & column width Beam & column depth Slab and stair depth Reinforcement cover Reinforcement grade Reinforcement diameter Reinforcement spacing Reinforcement laps Reinforcement ligature spacing Plumbing & electrical roughed-in Concrete strength Curing Inspection Required Inspect controlled docs Spot check forms Spot check forms Spot check forms Check chair size Spot check markings Spot check diameter Spot check Spot check Spot check Check all positions Delivery dockets Spot check Accept Criteria Latest issue on site + 10%.10% +.....10% +..10% +..

They are intended to demonstrate the principles relevant to site safety for this form of construction. minimizing risk of injury and fatality. However.com . they are not intended to be a complete list of all requirements. Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd . must be prepared in accordance with the applicable legislation and regulations. Work Method Statements. relevant to the particular project.electronicblueprint. for inclusion as part of a site-specific Safety & Emergency Plan and Job Safety Analysis.Safety & Emergency Work Method Statements All work shall be carried out in a safe manner. “Site Safety” from www. Sample Work Method Statements for construction activities are available in a Training Package.

Permission is also given for not-for-profit Nongovernmental Organizations to use this material in the preparation of Building Skills Training Programs and for the design. who must make themselves aware of any changes to the applicable standards. engineers or builders with the requisite qualifications and experience. with the express intention that architects. engineers and builders will edit them to suit the particular requirements of specific projects. Use of this material for any other commercial purposes prohibited without the written permission of the copyright owner. Copyright: Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd . These broad principles and practices must be translated into specific requirements for particular projects by professional architects. The authors.Disclaimer & Copyright Disclaimer This training package covers broad engineering principles and building practices. building regulations and other relevant regulations. Associated sample specifications and drawings are available in electronic format. engineers and builders. The design. specifications and associated drawings do not accept any responsibility for incorrect. publishers and distributors of these documents. Copyright © Quasar Management Services Pty Ltd All rights are reserved. construction and costing of structures must be carried out by qualified and experienced architects. with particular emphasis on affordable housing and associated village infrastructure in the AsiaPacific region. specification and contracts for individual projects. inappropriate or incomplete use of this information. specification and construction of affordable housing and associated infrastructure in the Asia-Pacific region. Permission is given for individuals to use this material in the preparation of designs.

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