If the motion of the concrete is stopped in a frosted pipe, the heat will radiate from the concrete so quickly that the entire line can freeze completely in a matter of moments. Usually if this happens, the pour cannot be completed until the slick line is replaced, and the concrete sitting on the job will often be rejected before it can be pumped. Many dollars can be lost when this occurs.
Never stand on ice-coated pipes or other round objects and use caution on the pumping unit’s decks and steps. Workers are reminded to wear the appropriate cold weather personal protective equipment and to always wear insulated gloves when handling icy pipes and clamps that can slip causing injury.
Extreme caution is especially needed during and after cleanout as all areas surrounding the pumping unit might be coated with ice as a result from the water that was used to clean out the pipes and accessories. Serious injury can occur as result from slips and falls.
Pumping concrete in temperatures as low as -10° Fahrenheit, and even lower, is not only possible but routine in many parts of the world. However, the pump’s manufacturer may prohibit use of the boom when temperatures fall well below sub-degree temperatures and the pumping company should be aware of the specific temperature restriction of their respective manufacturers. Use of the boom in extreme cold conditions will cause the steel of the boom to become brittle and cause it to crack from normal boom bounce.
Prior to the pump arriving on the jobsite, it is a good idea to communicate with your employees and/or the pumping company to discuss any conditions, such as extreme temperatures, which may have an effect on the safety and performance of the pour. Work to develop a plan which will not only ensure a successful pour but one that enables you to obtain the maximum benefits of placing concrete with a concrete pump.
Source: Schwing America, Inc.Manufacturer’s Operating Manual for Concrete Pumps
Cold Weather Concrete Placing Product Roundup
Whether you're pumping concrete or using another placing system, if you're working in cold weather conditions you'll want to have products designed for that type of concrete work. Here is a small roundup of jobsite products for cold weather concrete placing.
Multi-Duty (MD) Heating Blankets from Powerblanket
Cure Sprayer Trailer from E-Z Drill, Inc.
Insul-Tarp Form Cover from Insulations Solutions Inc.
Extra-Hot (High Heat) Blankets from Powerblanket
Topper Concrete Curing Blanket from Insulations Solutions Inc.
E1100 Hydronic Surface Heater from Wacker Neuson Corporation
Premier 170-DF from L.B. White Co.
Thaw Devil TD600 Hydronic Heater from Heat Wagon Inc.
PowerHeat 300 Pro Skid Mounted from Quest Climate Control Equipment
Heat King Glycol Mobile Heater from Tamarack Industries
HeatZone H1350 Flameless Heater from Thawzall LLC
PowerHeat 980 Pro Trailer Mounted from Quest Climate Control Equipment