|How Much Concrete Will It Take To Make Your Patio?
by: Konkratar Seifener
There's a simple way to calculate how much concrete it will take to make
your patio, plus you will be able to make sure you are getting your
money's worth, if you decide to hire a contractor.
First, decide how big a patio you want. Since almost everybody needs to
see something before they actually understand if that is what they want,
you need to layout the size of the patio that you want to add on your
Contractors use spray paint to mark the outline of things they are going
to build. This is called laying out a project. When you have spray
painted the grass to show the size of your proposed patio, you will
better understand exactly what your project will look like when you
finish. Use a lot of paint so you can easily see the line.
Over the next couple of days, look at the outline to see if that
is the size patio you want. What do you like about it? What
don't you like? What would you like to change?
Now is the time to make any changes that you want because it
does not cost you anything to do it. Make the changes in a
different color paint.
Now that you have decided on the size and shape of your patio,
you can start to determine how much concrete you will need to do
the job. This is called creating an estimate of the cost and is
not as hard to do as it sounds.
Measure the outside of your patio and calculate the
area. For instance, if your patio is 20' x 25' the area is the width x
the length. So the area would be 500 SQ Feet. Now decide on how thick
you want your patio to be. Most patios are 4" thick. Now you need to
convert the thickness of the patio into feet by dividing by 12. This
would give you a thickness of 0.3333 feet.
Now its time to calculate the volume of the concrete that you will need
to build your patio. Multiply the area in Sq. Feet (500 Sq Feet) x the
thickness in feet (0.333 feet) and you get 166.66 Cubic feet.
All concrete is sold by the cubic yard. There are 27 cubic feet in 1
cubic yard of concrete, so in order to get the number of cubic yards you
need just divide 166.66 by 27. The total number of cubic yards you need
Concrete costs vary from $70 per cubic yard to as high as $100 per cubic
yard. (The concrete ready mix company and any contractor you talk to
will refer to concrete in terms of yards instead of cubic yards, so
don't get confused.)
If you are going to do the patio yourself, you will need to tell the
concrete ready mix company what you are going to be doing and when so
they can give you the right mix of concrete. They will make the concrete
to match the weather conditions and what you are going to be using it
I would not recommend that you attempt to make a pour this large unless
you have some experience with concrete or have someone who can help you.
6 cubic yards is a lot of concrete to place and finish, especially if
you are in your back yard and have to wheelbarrow it.
A reputable contractor will have a crew of 4-6 people to place a project
of this size, so don't think for a moment that you can do it with your
buddies and someone who has seen concrete poured before. If you do
decide to save a little money by doing it yourself, you might just have
12,000 pounds of concrete that you need do break up and haul away. (Each
yard of concrete weighs around 3,500 lbs.)
You should get 3 prices from contractors in your area because prices
vary from area to area. Choose the price in the middle so you know you
are getting a reasonable price from a solid contractor.
About The Author
Konkratar Seifener is a web-entrepreneur and creator of Real Concrete
which is one of the best sites on the net for information about
concrete. If you want more information on how to buy a camcorder please
go to: http://www.realconcrete.com.