It is essential to make a concrete screed on the ground before making or designing any type of floor covering. However, its elaboration requires a certain level of knowledge in construction, since otherwise it can be a great waste of time and materials.
To know how to make a concrete screed, you must first define exactly what it is. In this sense, it is a surface made with a type of concrete for screed that separates the land from the bases of a house. Likewise, it allows the floor to be leveled before placing ceramic tiles or any type of coating.
Also, it is possible to use a screed to make a small path at the entrance of the house or even to balance the floor of the rooms if they have different levels. Due to its wide utility, it is an essential surface to carry out any type of construction. In this sense, we have developed a step by step with everything you need to know to make a concrete screed.
How to make a concrete screed?
Before starting with the realization of a screed, it is necessary to have different materials and a certain level of knowledge in masonry and construction . In this case, it is very important to remember that it is not advisable to do this type of work if you do not have previous experience or do not have a professional in this area, since concrete screed regulations must be followed to carry it out.
1. Organize the area
It is necessary to clean and remove debris from the floor before making a screed. Also, leave enough space around to place tools and materials, since this job requires several round trips, so it is advisable to have all the utensils as close as possible.
2. Take measurements
You have to accurately measure the length and height you are going to have. To help you, you can use a tape measure, as well as a bubble gauge that allows you to remove the levels for the concrete screed. This way, you can tell how flat the terrain is. Also, you must make a construction detail of the screed to have a clearer idea of the thickness that the surface will have.
3. Delimit the terrain
When pouring concrete into a room, it is not necessary to delimit the area, as the same space often serves as a limiting structure for the mortar . However, if you want to apply it outdoors, then you should make a formwork concrete screed. First, a perimeter must be fixed with twine and stakes to establish the minimum area and thickness of the concrete base. Then, with wooden planks and nails, you can make a form that can withstand the pressure of the concrete once you add the mixture to the screed.
4. Calculate the volume of the screed
The calculation of reinforced concrete slabs is one of the most important steps, since this way you can be sure of buying enough material. In this sense, to obtain the ratio of concrete to screed, you must first multiply the width of the space by the length and thickness you want.
All these data must be represented in meters at the time of multiplication. In this way, we can obtain the volume in cubic meters (m³), which will later be used to calculate the concrete for screed. Now, for every 1 m³ of screed it is necessary to have 1 m³ of sand and 300 kg of cement. In addition, for every 35 kg of cement you must add between 10 and 15 liters of water to make the mortar.
5. Install insulation or metal mesh
You can pour the concrete directly on the ground or place a separation layer between the floor and the base to avoid the increase of humidity and limit the risk of cracks. The insulation layer is generally made of a plastic construction film. Once placed, you must incorporate the metallic mesh that can come in rolls or sheets. Either way, it is advisable to tie the metal pieces for added strength.
Also, it is possible to make a concrete screed without mesh, but in this case it might not be too strong, since the function of the mesh is to allow the concrete to adhere better.
6. Pour the concrete
After laying the mesh, you should make the mortar in a concrete mixer or on a surface relatively far from the screed. After the concrete mix is made, then you need to pour it. In this step, it is advisable to start in a corner of the space and work systematically across the floor. Depending on the dimensions, it is appropriate to have the help of 2 or more people to add the concrete quickly. On the other hand, it is important to use the reference points previously marked with the strings. In this way, you avoid exceeding the height.
7. Level the sill
For this step, you must have an aluminum ruler and a level that lets you know that the sill is straight. With the screed, you must make rotary movements to remove the excess concrete . You can then use the level to make sure that every meter of the sill is completely straight. If it isn’t, then you should add or remove concrete from the surface to help balance.
8. Let dry
The setting time of the concrete is approximately 5 days. After this period, it is possible to walk on the slab and, after 7 days, we can place heavy objects on it. If you do not wait, some detail may occur in the slab that over time generates cracks and major faults.
On the other hand, if there is a warm climate in the floor space, then the surface must be sprayed with a little water every day to prevent it from cracking during drying. Also, if it is very cold or it is a rainy area, the base must be covered with plastic.
Finally, it should be mentioned that, once the concrete floor dries, it offers a stable, resistant and waterproof surface, which serves as a base to carry out any other type of construction project, but it is necessary to respect these steps to be successful. in this project.