Setting Posts in Concrete the Easy Way

No deck, fence or mailbox would last very long without a strong foundation, and that starts with setting the posts in concrete. 

Posts, which 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 traditional concrete mix. 

“Today’s Homeowner” host Danny Lipford pours Quikrete Fast-Setting Concrete Mix into a post hole.
Major construction work is unnecessary for minor projects. Quikrete Fast-Setting Concrete Mix is the efficient choice for small jobs. 

About Fast-Setting Concrete

Using Quikrete Fast-Setting Concrete, in the red bag, simplifies and speeds up the process of setting posts in concrete. 

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 Quikrete will eliminate any guesswork.

Application is easy — just dig a hole, pour in the concrete and add water. Then mix the concrete and water by agitating them with a stick until the components are thoroughly combined.

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 concrete mix is versatile and can be used for a variety of general-purpose applications, whether you’re installing a mailbox post, basketball goal or a small slab. 

Closeup of Quikrete Fast-Setting Concrete Mix poured into a post hole
No mixing is necessary when you use Quikrete Fast-Setting Concrete Mix. But you can agitate the water and concrete mix with a stick. 

How to Set a Post in Concrete

Ready to set a post in concrete? Follow these directions: 

1. 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. 

2. 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.

3. Pour water in the hole. Add up to 1 gallon of water in the hole until it soaks into the concrete mix. Then agitate with a stick.

4. Wait. Allow 20 to 40 minutes for the concrete 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

“Today’s Homeowner” host Danny Lipford pours concrete mix into a fence post hole

A sagging post isn’t a death sentence for the structure — fix it with Quikrete Fast-Setting Concrete Mix. 

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

Whether you’re setting a post or fixing one, 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. 


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