If you were asked one day, out of the blue, about the difference between concrete and cement, what would you say? Is that beautiful patio design in your backyard made out of cement, or was it concrete? Cement and concrete are often used interchangeably even though they are very different terms.
Cement is made from a mixture of ingredients like limestone, calcium, silicon and more that are heated at high temperatures to form clinkers, a product similar to marbles. These are ground into powder and, with the addition of gypsum, a gray flour-like substance is created; cement. Adding water to this mixture triggers a chemical process allowing it to harden. One of the most commonly used cements in construction is Portland Cement as it remains strong underwater and in wet conditions. In simple terms cement is the binder that holds concrete together.
Concrete, on the other hand, uses cement to bind aggregate, a combination of crushed stone, sand and rock, together. When mixed with water, the cement and aggregate will begin to harden. This mixture can be poured into molds or spread to form a solid, stone like mass upon hardening. Because of its components, concrete is extremely durable making it perfect for a wide variety of uses. It can even take a variety of finishes and textures that will endure for years to come.
If you asked West Coast Modernscape’s masons what material a sidewalk was made out of they would be able to tell you. In fact, you would probably get quite the speech as a reply! We are experts in the use of beautiful, sustainable concrete in your outdoor living space. If you are interested in the variety of opportunity that concrete provides, feel free to contact us!