Precast concrete is one of the trends the construction industry has adopted in executing projects. It refers to concrete that’s prepared off-site and later brought on-site for installation. The reason for the adoption mainly lies with faster project execution, especially since the curing process is canceled out. Also, construction professionals get to achieve the desired quality standards since the process is in a controlled environment.
With precasting, you can achieve most building elements such as beams, stairs, and slabs. Suppose you want to install precast stairs. How will you execute the project? Here’s a guide to the installation:
Planning before installing your commercial concrete stairs ensures you get it right the first time. There’ll be no errors and reworks that extend the project execution period.
A staircase has many parts, mainly the risers, treads, and landings. It’s important to know the number of each. The size of your stairwell should determine this. Wrong dimensions will make you order the wrong precast concrete stairs that won’t fit your stairs. Therefore, calculate the number of steps you’ll have as part of planning.
It’d help to seek assistance from your general contractor. The vendor from whom you’ll source your precast concrete stairs can also help you arrive at this figure.
Clear The Area
The precast concrete stairs need a clean surface to place on. It’ll ensure they serve you for the long term. The focus should be on eliminating any shrubs or grass in the area. Also, dig a few inches deep to remove the topsoil. Topsoil is associated with the settlement of the stairs over time, which can become a safety issue.
With everything out of the way, level the remaining ground to ensure your stairs are flat and not raised at any point. Extending the area you’re clearing by a few inches from the exact staircase dimensions is best. It provides room for adjustment should the need arise.
Prepare The Sub-Base
The sub-base will provide a stable ground for the stairs. It also breaks direct contact between the stairs and soil for longevity and minimal to no settlement.
The ideal sub-base is gravel or crushed stones. They’ll also aid in drainage. It’d help to lay a 4-inch sub-base and finish off by compacting or tamping it. The aim is to achieve a flat surface.
Pour Your Base
The base is where your precast concrete stairs will sit upon laying. The ideal base is made of concrete due to its stability and strength. It can carry all the load and constant traffic of the stairs.
Prepare the area by placing formwork around the area you’ll pour your concrete. Mix your concrete with an average ratio, preferably class 15 or 20, and pour it into the sectioned area. Use a concrete vibrator to ensure the concrete evenly spreads without air spaces. Lay the concrete at least 100 or 150mm thick. Follow this with a trowel to level the top of the concrete.
Let the concrete base cure and harden overnight or for 24 hours before placing your precast concrete stairs.
Purchase And Deliver The Precast Concrete Stairs
With the surface ready, it’s time to purchase your precast stairs. The purchasing process is crucial since you want to buy quality stairs that’ll last a lifetime. It’d help to buy from a reputable manufacturer. A reputable manufacturer is one known for producing quality precast concrete stairs.
Looking at the manufacturer’s reviews will provide information about their services. You’ll find these online or on the company’s website. Upon purchasing, it’s important to plan for transport. Precast concrete stairs are heavy, and you might need equipment to load and offload them on your site. Inquire if the vendor will deliver the stairs for you, or you’ll have to find independent means.
Install The Stairs
The installation process is quite easy. All you must do is place the precast member on the set concrete base. In most cases, you don’t need to join the precast stairs with the concrete pad. Placing the stairs in place is enough.
Joining is necessary if your staircase design requires several precast concrete stairs instead of one. Concrete epoxy will make the process easy. Ensure you apply an adequate amount at the contact point for effective jointing. It’d help to have an expert install your precast concrete stairs. They better know how to do it without errors.
Precast concrete stairs are a great addition to your home or office complex. The discussion above details the installation process. As seen, it’s a simple guide that you can easily follow. Therefore, adopting it as you execute your precast concrete stairs installation project is best. The process will be easier and faster.