Concrete Additive for Swimming Pools

Concrete Additive for Swimming Pools

When constructing swimming pools, concrete must meet strict requirements for strength and permeability. Whether pouring or shotcreting, the concrete mix must be designed for easy placement and optimal performance. Additives and admixtures, such as EdenCrete® and EdenCrete Pz®, provide a way to modify concrete properties to meet design requirements.

However, some in the industry use the terms “admixture” and “additive” interchangeably, and it’s sometimes difficult to tell the difference. So before continuing further, a point of clarification.

Cement Additives vs. Concrete Admixtures

Note that “additives” is used after “cement” and “admixture” after “concrete.” Simply put, additives are added to the cement in the manufacturing process, while admixtures are added to concrete, shotcrete, or mortar when mixing to modify their properties. 
For example, EdenCrete® and EdenCrete Pz® are admixtures added during mixing to increase the strength and durability of concrete, while grinding aids or strength enhancers added during cement manufacture are examples of cement additives.

Here are some of the benefits of admixture application in swimming pool concrete (shotcrete) and why you should consider EdenCrete® products:

Minimize Waste and Save on Materials

Overspray usually covers everything in the vicinity of shotcreting operations, forcing contractors into costly measures to protect against overspray, including covering everything with plastic sheeting, removing all equipment from the job site, and painstakingly cleaning afterward. Admixtures like EdenCrete® help minimize overspray by improving the rheology of the mix to ensure efficient placement.

In some mixes, the increased strength from EdenCrete® can reduce the amount of cement needed while still meeting design requirements.

Improve Strength and Durability

Admixtures are an excellent way of increasing concrete compressive and tensile strength, abrasion resistance, and resistance to chemical damage such as deicer scaling, ensuring the durability of swimming pools. EdenCrete® products incorporate carbon nanotubes that enhance the bonds at the interfacial transition zone between the cement paste and the aggregate to help boost strength and durability.

Reduce Permeability

Although a waterproof layer is usually added after concreting a swimming pool, excessive concrete permeability can cause a myriad of problems, including chemical damage and water seepage into or out of the pool. The carbon nanotubes in EdenCrete® fill spaces between the hydrated cement particles at the nanoscopic level so that when concrete cures, it does not leave porous voids.

Shrinkage and Cracking

Excessive shrinkage can lead to cracking, affecting the strength and durability of concrete. Using EdenCrete® is an excellent way to improve your mix and reduce cracking due to drying shrinkage.

Reduce Wear and Tear

Fresh concrete is abrasive and can be rough on equipment such as pumps in shotcrete placement. EdenCrete® improves concrete workability and pumpability, thus reducing wear and tear on the pump as the concrete can move with less resistance. Also, the hydraulic pump pressures needed to pump shotcrete and concrete is lower. Over the long term, these savings on energy and maintenance can have a large positive impact on profits.

EdenCrete®  vs. EdenCrete Pz®

At this point, you may wonder what the difference is between EdenCrete® and EdenCrete Pz®. While both admixtures are suitable for swimming pool construction, EdenCrete Pz® was specifically designed for concrete mixes that use pozzolans—hence the Pz— such as fly ash and/or slag to replace cement. Pozzolans are chemicals that react with calcium hydroxide in the presence of water to form compounds with cementitious properties. Check out the products page to learn more about EdenCrete® products.

Admixtures offer an opportunity for sustainability by reducing cement usage in a given mix, even as the demand for cement continues to increase worldwide in the carbon-intensive concrete industry. The added creaminess provided by EdenCrete® and EdenCrete Pz® admixtures increases the volume of concrete or shotcrete produced from a given quantity of cement, reducing costs and the carbon footprint.

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