Remote Concrete Temperature Monitoring Boosts Success of Cold Weather Concrete Curing

Concrete curing sensors and low-temperature alerts reduce failures of low-temperature pours

The curing of concrete is both art and science, and it requires strict attention to detail. Cold weather concrete curing is especially tricky. Just a few degrees of difference in the temperature of the concrete or the ambient air can affect how well the concrete cures and the strength and durability of the finished product.

As a general rule, concrete requires a minimum curing temperature of 40°F to 55°F, depending on the thickness and desired strength, and those minimum temperatures must be sustained throughout the curing process. But concrete temperature monitoring can be a time-consuming, labor-intensive process.

WEDGE, a remote concrete monitoring system available only from United Rentals, allows contractors to monitor concrete pours at any time from a computer, tablet or smartphone, without a site visit, and makes concrete temperature monitoring surprisingly easy. WEDGE can help contractors save costs, improve safety, and accelerate project schedules, all while giving invaluable peace of mind.

How WEDGE works

WEDGE starts with a network of wireless thermocouple sensors embedded in the concrete pour and placed in the surrounding area. The information from the sensors is converted into temperature data. Using the WEDGE dashboard, contractors can access up-to-the minute temperature and humidity readings, as well as historical cure data required for reports.

With WEDGE, contractors can set up text or email alerts that notify them if the temperature or humidity of the concrete or the surrounding area goes outside of a predetermined threshold. These alerts identify the nature of the problem and pinpoint the location of the sensor or sensors that triggered the alert. They let contractors take immediate action to ensure that the concrete curing proceeds properly.

Fast interventions prevent costly do-overs

Prompt correction of temperature variances during a pour can make a big difference in a project’s bottom line. One contractor placed WEDGE’s concrete curing sensors in a newly poured slab and in two locations in the surrounding protective structure. The night after the pour, winds displaced the tarps around the concrete. The ambient temperature quickly plummeted below the 5°C (41°F) minimum threshold the contractor had set.

Thanks to the WEDGE alert, the contractor was able to send workers out to fix the tarp and get the ambient temperatures back in range before the slab cooled down. WEDGE saved the contractor thousands of dollars in rework.

Remote concrete monitoring drives efficiencies and boosts safety

Remote concrete monitoring eliminates the labor costs of manual monitoring, which add up fast on long-term projects with ongoing concrete pours. It can also free up those workers to perform more productive tasks. By keeping workers off the site at night, remote monitoring may also increase worker safety, too.

In addition, when WEDGE sensors are used to provide temperature data for different parts of a jobsite, that data enables optimized heater placement and may help reduce the need for rental heaters. If certain rooms or floors are warmer than necessary, heaters can be taken off rent or moved where they are needed. Contractors who use the SmartControl add-on to the WEDGE system can save fuel by remotely adjusting connected heaters.

Shorten project schedules with data-based concrete curing times

United Rentals will configure your WEDGE monitoring system by strategically placing the sensors and inputting the relevant data about your concrete pour into the WEDGE software. That information includes ASTM standards for the desired mix strength as well as the concrete curing time, concrete curing temperature and humidity level needed to ensure the concrete meets all engineering requirements.

Combining this information with sensor data enables WEDGE to alert contractors when the concrete has reached the desired strength. This has allowed contractors to reduce the time between pours. One contractor working on a 36-story office building was able to move the forms from one pour to the next 24 hours earlier than planned. WEDGE shortened the schedule by 36 days, which translated to huge savings on manpower, equipment rentals and other expenses.

Contractors today need to take advantage of every tool and technology that can help them work smarter and more efficiently. Using WEDGE when curing concrete can shrink schedules and save man-hours. Even more important, it gives both contractors and project owners confidence in the quality and strength of concrete placements. You should always consult with an expert regarding the specific circumstances, applicable rules and regulations related to your site and to your situation.

Visit WEDGE.UR.com or call 833.450.1400 for more information on how you can use WEDGE to reduce costs and increase efficiency on your next concrete project.

 

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