AFRICAN JOURNAL OF BUILT ENVIRONMENT RESEARCH

Effect of external curing methods on the compressive and flexural strengths of concrete in the hot-humid climate

ABSTRACT

Designers and producers of concrete products use different curing methods without considering their influence on the strength development of concrete. In the hot humid climate, the method of curing used is critical in achieving the needed strength of concrete for construction application. This study sought to investigate how the various curing methods can influence the compressive and flexural strengths of concrete in hot humid climates. Concrete of a mix ratio 1:1.5:3 at 0.60 water-cement ratio, with a targeted strength of 20 N/mm2 was used to cast plain concrete cubes and beams. A total of 120 concrete specimens were prepared, comprising 60 each for cubes and beams. Four different curing methods (immersion, jute sack covering, plastic sheet covering, and water sprinkling) were adopted. The concrete specimens were tested on 7, 14, 21, 28 and 56 days of curing. It emerged that the immersion curing method recorded the highest compressive values of 23.43 and 25.83 N/mm2, respectively for the 28 and 56 days curing at a significant difference of 16% increase strength over the sprinkling method. It was also found that the immersion curing method obtained the highest flexural strength of 2.81 and 3.49 N/mm2, respectively, for the 28 and 56 days curing at 14% increase strength over the sprinkling method. The study further found a strong positive linear relationship between the compressive and flexural strengths of the curing methods. The study, concludes that the use of an appropriate method of curing can have a significant effect on the flexural and compressive strengths of the concrete, and therefore recommend the adoption of immersion curing method, especially in the hot humid climate for precast and laboratory-based concrete units’ production.

Author(s): Gabriel-Wettey, F. K. N., Danso, H. and Appiah-Kubi, E.
Published online:  April, 2021
 

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