One of the most popular questions we answer on a weekly basis here at Blockwalls is about how our Concrete Lego Block Walls stack up (Excuse the pun) when compared to more traditional types of Concrete Blocks.
Traditional Concrete is used for many different products across many industries. When it comes to Concrete Blocks you can use different size blocks for building a retaining wall in your garden to building and adding finishing touches to residential buildings. These are normally much smaller in size than the Concrete Lego Blocks we manufacture, and would require footings being prepared first and then the walls being bonded to increase their strength and safety. This is where Concrete Lego Blocks excel. Because of their size more often than not there is a flat and solid base for the blocks to be laid on. This is all that is required and no footing or bonding is needed. This is usually down to the size and weight of the Recycled Blocks which can weigh up to 1.1 Tonne each. The Downside is they aren’t as versatile as traditional Concrete Blocks when it comes to the amount of projects they can be used in.
Traditional Concrete can vary in price depending on the amount you need and the Labour cost, however there can be a huge difference when it comes to pricing against Recycled Concrete. Recycled Concrete is more cost effective because of the raw materials that are being used in the manufacture of the end product. Materials from Recycled Concrete Aggregate (RCA) to PFA (Pulverised Fuel Ash) can be used in the manufacture of Recycled Blocks and this is great not only from a Green Perspective, but also in terms of cost too. A significant amount of Recycled Concrete was used in the Construction of the Olympic Park in London. It was estimated that around 500,000m3 of ready mixed concrete and an equivalent aggregate requirement of 1m Tonnes was used in its construction
In a report recently published, The European Quality Association for Recycling (EQAR)* referenced that Recycling Quotas for the Construction Industry and Demolition Waste is to be increased to 70% of the waste produced until 2020 in the European Union. The Fields of application of Recycled Building Materials shows a high marketability of these products compared to natural stones in lots of European countries and have been used in diverse projects ranging from Roads, Road foundations, and Sports Centres to Retaining Walls, Earth Banks and Segregation Bays. Here at Blockwalls we find that the most popular uses for our blocks are in the Construction and Waste Management sectors where there is an increasing demand for using Recycled materials. Many large recycling companies in the UK today have dedicated centres specifically designed to recycle different aggregates, demonstrating their green credentials and embracing the Circular Economy.
* Ref: http://bit.ly/20q6BTv
It is generally accepted that when natural sand is used, up to 30 percent of natural crushed coarse aggregate can be replaced with coarse recycled aggregate without significantly affecting any of the mechanical properties of the concrete. As replacement amounts increase drying shrinkage and creep will increase and tensile strength and modulus of elasticity will decrease, however compressive strength and freeze-thaw resistance are not significantly affected.
Here at Blockwalls we are always looking at ways we can increase the Green Credentials of our products without compromising on strength and durability. We have recently secured a Knowledge Transfer Partnership with one of the biggest and most recognised Universities in the UK where we will be employing Civil Engineers to work on this very topic. We feel that if we can incorporate certain recycled materials into the manufacture of the blocks it will further set us aside from the competition when it comes to quality and environmental benefits. At present each project is absolutely unique and will require a different strength of block depending on the final destination. Fortunately, we have both the machinery and materials to cater to all types of Concrete Lego Blocks required for different projects from small segregation bays to large Construction projects.
For more information on our products and how they could benefit your next Construction project, click here to see more.