Recycled Concrete – What are the Benefits?
Recycled Concrete can be an efficient way to reduce material wastage and bring down the costs of a construction project. Use of reclaimed materials has been on the rise over the past few decades, due to increasing environmental consciousness amongst companies and a rising awareness of the benefits of using recycled aggregates.
Old, brittle and unsightly concrete can get in the way of a project, and so many assume the best solution is to discard it. However, getting rid of old concrete takes time and resources, and costs can quickly ramp up. Thankfully, there is a solution – recycling concrete.
What do we mean by “Recycled Concrete?”
Recycled concrete is material that has been created to specification, by crushing and breaking existing concrete for re-use as recycled aggregate. These recycled materials are both strong and durable and have found use in a wide range of construction projects – from roads and highways to car parks and urban driveways. Recycled concrete is often used as a subbase for these projects but can also be mixed with new materials and used in new concrete.
What are the benefits of Recycled Concrete?
There have been significant efforts to increase use of recycled materials since World War 2, however it is only in recent years that studies have been carried out on the efficiency of their properties. Furthermore, it is estimated that 40% of all landfill waste in the US comes from construction projects. With increasing expectation for businesses to increase their environmental efforts, the spotlight is firmly on the construction industry.
Recycling concrete reduces reliance on virgin materials, and so in turn reduces the environmental pressure associated with the exploiting and transporting these new materials. It also avoids useful materials ending up in landfills when they could be repurposed.
Recycled concrete can also be significantly lighter than virgin concrete, which means increased volume with each weight order.
For businesses, using recycled concrete can be a particularly efficient cost-saving exercise. It streamlines expenditure on landfill taxes and unnecessary transport, as the recycling of concrete can often be done on-site. As landfills become more stringent on what materials can be accepted, it could also reduce the time spent dealing with regulations.
How to recycle concrete?
Recycling concrete can be done in two ways – either by transporting it to a quarry to be crushed, or on-site using a mobile concrete reclaimer such as the Rapid Reclaimer. There are pros and cons to both methods. On-site recycling costs less and causes less pollution than the option of transporting elsewhere. By carrying out the process on-site, there are also time-saving benefits, as the process can be carried out there and then.
Using the Rapid Reclaimer for recycling concrete
The innovative Rapid Reclaimer is a mobile reclaiming unit for the recovery of unused concrete. The unit recovers washed out sand, aggregate and grey water and can process up to 20m3 of slurried concrete per hour. With its fixed position water jets, aggregate conveyor and twin water giraffes, the Rapid Reclaimer is the perfect mobile unit for on-site recycling. The portable nature of the Rapid Reclaimer allows you to enjoy all the time-saving and cost-saving benefits of using recycled concrete, without the costs of transporting the materials off-site for crushing.
For further reading, you can find more information on recycled concrete on The Portland Cement Association’s website.