Whether you are setting a fence post or pouring a small slab, Quikrete Fast-Setting Concrete Mix fills the bill.
No deck, fence or mailbox would last very long without a strong foundation, and that starts with setting the posts in concrete.
Posts, that support the rest of a structure, must be perfectly plumb (that is, vertical), sturdy, and securely anchored.
Unfortunately, since posts go in before everything else, they can hold up progress. So, for some jobs, it’s good to consider an alternative to the traditional concrete mix.
About Fast-Setting Concrete
Using Quikrete Fast-Setting Concrete, in the red bag, simplifies and speeds up the process of setting posts.
Quikrete has an easy-to-use calculator to determine exactly how much mix you’ll need to set your post. Enter the depth of your post, and the calculator will eliminate any guesswork.
Application is easy — just dig a hole, pour in the mix and add water.
Fast-setting concrete mix sets hard in 20 to 40 minutes, so you can quickly level things and move on with the project. You can even use the post after four hours.
Best of all, this mix is versatile and can be used for a variety of general-purpose applications, whether you’re installing a mailbox post, a basketball goal or a small slab. Be sure to always follow the directions on the back of the bag.
How to Set a Post in Concrete
Ready to set a post in concrete? Follow these directions:
- Dig the hole. Make it three times the width of the post and one-third to a half the length of the post. Then pour 6 inches of Quikrete All-Purpose Gravel into the bottom of the hole.
- Put the post in the hole. Level the post and fill the hole with Quikrete Fast-Setting Concrete Mix within 3 to 4 inches from the top of the hole.
- Pour water in the hole. Add up to 1 gallon of water in the hole until it soaks into the mix.
- Wait. Allow 20 to 40 minutes for the mix to set. You can place any heavy objects on the concrete, or allow traffic to pass over it, after four hours.
Setting a wooden post in concrete is the best way to keep it stable and secure for many years, but seasonal changes can cause the wood to shrink and loosen the post.
To prevent this, drive several large, rust-resistant nails into all four sides of the post at different angles.
Why nails? Think of the steel bars or wires that reinforce concrete slabs. For this project, we also need something to keep the post and the concrete together. The nails will further tie the post to the concrete, and hold it firmly in place even if the wood shrinks.
For more information, watch: How to Reinforce a Wooden Post Set in Concrete
Fixing a Leaning Post
Fast-setting concrete mix doesn’t just come in handy for new projects — it also saves the day for fast fixes — like fences that lean or sag.
When you look at a leaning post, the problem often appears much worse than it really is; the cause could be incorrect anchoring or insufficient structural support.
Either way, you just need some Fast-Setting Concrete, construction screws and basic tools to straighten it out.
For more information, read How to Fix a Leaning Fence
Pouring a Concrete Slab
If you’re thinking about hiring a contractor to pour a small concrete slab, like a trash can pad or deck stair landing, you might be waiting for a while.
Small projects like this are low priority for the pros. They take away time and resources from larger jobs that pay a lot more. And if professionals do agree to do the job, the price could be marked up exponentially and set at an inconvenient time for you.
With Quikrete Fast-Setting Concrete, you can have a usable slab in just a day. Here’s how:
- Build a form from 2x4s and remember to account for the width of the forming lumber.
- Secure the form in place with wood stakes and deck screws. You may have to dig a slight trench to set the forms at the correct height. Backfill against the forms to ensure stability and use the level to check for proper slope. The right end of the level should be about a half inch above the outside form, indicating a slight slope away from the building.
- Excavate the slab area to a depth of about 7 inches, allowing 3 inches for a gravel base and 4 inches for concrete.
- Compact the gravel inside the form as a base. This creates a solid sub-base that will help prevent erosion and slab settling.
- Dampen the gravel base using a garden hose to prevent shrinkage cracking especially in hot temperatures.
- Place the recommended amount of water into the mixer and then gradually add Fast-Setting Concrete into the mixer with the water until it is the appropriate consistency. You can also mix the concrete manually in a wheelbarrow or a mortar box. Do not mix more concrete than can be placed in 10 minutes.
- Pour the mix evenly into the form until it is two to three inches above the top of the form.
- Strike off excess mix using the screed board back, float the surface with a trowel and apply non-slick broom finish.
- Remove the form from the slab using an edger and wait four hours before placing any heavy objects or allowing foot traffic.
Whether you’re setting a post, fixing one or pouring a small slab, the next time you face a concrete project that needs to be done quickly, but without compromising strength or quality, call on Quikrete Fast-Setting Concrete Mix to do the job right.