Joints should be sawn as soon as the concrete withstands the sawing energy without fraying or dislodging aggregate particles. For most concrete mixes, this means sawing must be completed within the first six to 18 hours and should never be delayed more than 24 hours. Make sure you cut the joints soon enough. In hot climates, concrete could crack if joints are not cut within 6-12 hours of finishing the concrete.
In this condition, if you don't want to use a grooving tool to cut joints, there are lightweight early entry dry cutting saws that can be used almost immediately after finishing. These saws cut from 1 to 3 depths, depending on the model. Sawing can start between three and six hours after pouring concrete, depending on weather conditions. The best way to determine if the slab is ready is to make test cuts to check for fraying.
Saw cutting should begin as soon as fraying stops during these test cuts. After pouring the concrete, you can start cutting the concrete slabs within six to eighteen hours. During particularly hot climates, it can start even four hours after the concrete has been poured. Sawing control joints in concrete requires experience.
The time window for cutting poured concrete may vary depending on weather conditions and mix designs. Cutting freshly poured concrete too late can lead to unwanted cracks in the concrete, rendering joints ineffective. If it is too soon, the concrete will not have cured enough to support the saw and the operator. Joints should be sawn as soon as the concrete can withstand the sawing energy without fraying or dislodging aggregate particles.
For most concrete jobs, cutting should be done within the first 6 to 18 hours and never more than 24 hours. Smaller early-entry saws are available, which can allow cutting to begin within hours of placement. When sealing or filling control joints, it is important to wait longer so that the joint can widen and cracks can occur. At Cobra, we use many unique saws for each job depending on the need.
Our team will recommend the right time and equipment for a precise cut. Unfortunately, the time for sawing joints is based on experience and trial and error. Experience with local weather conditions and mix designs provide a window of time for sawing, but exact time is still determined by trial and error. At the beginning of the time window for sawing, make a saw cut on the slab.
If the edges of the saw cut fall apart, dislodging the aggregate, then it's too early to saw. Continue sawing at regular time intervals until cut edges show only minimal fraying. When this happens, the slab is ready for saw cutting. For the early entry dry cutting process, saw cuts are made with a specific type of saw that has an upward rotation of the cutting blade that leaves the fresh joints clean and keeps the saw in place.
The blade is designed to cut the concrete before it hardens without adding water in the saw cut. Early entry saws are generally limited to a 1-inch deep saw cut. Early entry saws are used once the concrete is firm enough that the concrete aggregate does not fray, but before the concrete hardens. Alternate and fine cutting is strongly recommended to allow air to flow around the blades of the hand held concrete saw and reduce.
Control cuts help alleviate random cracks by creating weak spots in concrete slabs, forcing cracks to form along the cuts rather than appearing in more obvious and unsightly places on concrete slabs. As concrete begins to experience shrinkage stresses that exceed the strength of concrete, there is a lot of “movement” in the slab. Cutting the concrete saw can be a difficult task, and making a mistake can increase the cost of cutting the concrete saw. There are several types of saw blades that can be used, depending on the type of concrete and how quickly the cuts start.
Cutting too soon causes fraying, an effect created by the saw blade pulling the aggregate out of position, leaving a messy, weakened edge along the cut. If you're new to concrete laying, this is a key area you need to understand to ensure you avoid problems in the future. If concrete is going to be stamped, ask what are the best ways to avoid interrupting the pattern with control joints. With this equipment, you can lay concrete in the morning and then cut the slab during normal working hours on the same day.
Expansion joints, or insulation joints, are used between two different concrete sheds, or when the concrete meets another material or even a structure. Due to variations in weather and mix designs, the time for sawing joints after concrete has been finished ranges from about four hours in warm weather to three days in cold climates. Cuts should be made at a predetermined distance and only after the concrete has gained sufficient strength, but before internal cracking begins. Factors such as curing techniques, slab thickness, and base type should be analyzed before selecting where to cut joints.