Topic: Concrete

How to Choose the Best Concrete Contractor in San Jose

calvac paving concrete work commercial in San Jose

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How to Choose the Best Concrete Contractor in San Jose

Essential Tips for Selecting the Right Concrete Expert

calvac paving concrete work commercial in San Jose

Are you planning a home renovation project? Building a new parking lot? Or do you need someone to handle the groundwork and foundation for your new residential or commercial building projects? Whatever your reason is, choosing a good concrete contractor in San Jose can be a daunting task especially when you’re completely clueless on how to start. 

Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered! We know how important it is to find someone trustworthy to get the job done right. This guide will walk you through some simple tips and tricks for finding good concrete contractors. From checking out their experience to reading reviews, we’ll cover all the bases to make sure that your project is in good hands. 

Do your research

First off, you need to research concrete contractors in the San Jose area. It’s crucial to do your homework when looking for concrete contractors. You can start by checking out online directories like Google and even asking friends and family for recommendations.

After that, you can proceed to check out the testimonials indicated on their websites or social media accounts. When doing this, you have to pay attention to things like quality of work, communication, and overall satisfaction because they’ll give you a good idea of what to expect! Paving companies that are proud of their work show it off on their social media.

calvac paving concrete work commercial in San Jose

Evaluate their experience and expertise

When it comes to choosing concrete contractors, experience is key. You need someone who is experienced and knows all the ins and outs of what they’re doing.

So, how can you tell if a concrete contractor has the right experience? You can start by asking about the past projects they’ve worked on, how long they’ve been in the business, and if they specialize in doing concrete projects.

You want an excellent concrete contractor with experience in a variety of concrete services, whether it’s creating a new driveway or fixing cracks. 

Check their licensing

Making sure your concrete contractor is licensed is a big deal. So, if in any case something goes wrong, you want to make sure your project is well covered!

To check if a contractor is legit, you can usually ask for their license number and check with your local licensing board. 

Hiring licensed and insured concrete contractors isn’t just about playing by the rules but it’s also about keeping everyone safe. Plus, it guarantees that your project is compliant with the law, so you can have peace of mind knowing everything’s legal.

Request Detailed Quotes

Asking for a detailed quote for your concrete project is a wise move that everyone should do. This will help you budget every dollar you spend and make sure that there are no unexpected expenses along the way! 

What to look for in a quote? You can look for things like the cost of materials, labor, and any additional fees or taxes. The more details, the better! Once you’ve gathered quotes from different concrete contractors, you can compare and evaluate each quote while taking note of their similarities and differences. This will help you figure out which concrete contractor is the best match for your budget and needs. 

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Communication and Professionalism

Establishing good communication with concrete contractors will make sure that everyone’s on the same page. Miscommunications during the project are the last thing we want, which makes this part crucial.

When meeting with a contractor for the first time, you have to keep an eye out for signs of professionalism, like showing up on time, listening attentively to your needs, and being honest and transparent about their process. 

Whether it’s discussing project timelines or addressing any concerns, keeping the lines of communication open will result in a smooth journey to the success of your concrete project. 

Don’t forget to ask the right questions! 

Before you proceed with starting your concrete project, you need to ask questions to get to know them better! You can ask about things like their experience, previous projects, and how they handle challenges. 

Take note of how quickly the concrete contractors respond to your inquiries and how transparent they are about their process. This part is crucial especially when problems arise in the middle of the project.

Asking questions is a great way to establish understanding and trust as well as gain knowledge.  Here’s a list of sample questions you can ask your concrete contractor:

  1. Who are your material suppliers and why?

  2. What is your working day like?

  3. How will additional charges be dealt with?

  4. How do you handle unexpected issues or changes during the project?

  5. What is your policy on cleaning up the job site at the end of each day?

calvac paving concrete work commercial in San Jose

It’s time to finalize everything and make a choice

Start off by carefully reviewing all the information you’ve gathered from the tips above. Consider different factors like the contractor’s experience, cost, and how well you trust the contractor. Trust your instincts and go with what feels right for you!

Remember that when it comes to contract and timeline negotiations, finding common ground is important. So, don’t hesitate to ask questions to your concrete contractors and speak up whenever there’s something that doesn’t quite line up with what you had in mind. 

After all that, never forget to finalize everything by signing a detailed contract. This detailed contract lays out all the terms and expectations for your concrete project. 

Need a trusted concrete contractor? Calvac Paving is the answer! 

Calvac Paving has been the go-to choice for comprehensive and high-quality concrete services for 50 years in San Jose, California. With over five decades of experience in the industry, Calvac Paving offers a wide range of concrete services. Whether you need precise installations, efficient repairs, or comprehensive maintenance, you can always rely on their proven expertise. 

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Maintenance Monday – Joints In Concrete Slabs

calvac paving discusses joints in concrete slabs

Maintenance Monday:

Joints In Concrete Slabs

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Concrete Joint Information

Different joints in concrete slabs all have the same bottom-line purpose of preventing cracks

As concrete moves, if it is tied to another structure or even to itself, we get what’s called restraint, which causes tensile forces and invariably leads to cracking. Restraint simply means that the concrete element (whether it’s a slab a wall or a foundation) is not being allowed to freely shrink as it dries to expand and contract with temperature changes or to settle a bit into the subgrade. Joints allow one concrete element to move independently of other parts of the building or structure. Joints also let concrete shrink as it preventing what’s called internal restraint. Internal restraint is created when one part of a slab shrinks more than another or shrinks in a different direction. Think how bad you feel when part of you wants to do one thing and another part wants to do something else! Concrete feels the same way. If you have a question about Calvac Paving, please contact us at Calvac Paving 2645 Pacer Ln San Jose, CA 95111 408-225-7700  

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Maintenance Monday – How Portland Cement is Made

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Maintenance Monday:

How Portland Cement is Made


Portland cement is the basic ingredient of concrete. Concrete is formed when Portland cement creates a paste with water that binds with sand and rock to harden. Cement is manufactured through a closely controlled chemical combination of calcium, silicon, aluminum, iron, and other ingredients. Common materials used to manufacture cement include limestone, shells, and chalk or marl combined with shale, clay, slate, blast furnace slag, silica sand, and iron ore. These ingredients, when heated at high temperatures form a rock-like substance that is ground into the fine powder that we commonly think of as cement. 

The most common way to manufacture Portland cement is through a dry method. The first step is to quarry the principal raw materials, mainly limestone, clay, and other materials. After quarrying the rock is crushed. This involves several stages. The first crushing reduces the rock to a maximum size of about 6 inches. The rock then goes to secondary crushers or hammer mills for reduction to about 3 inches or smaller. The crushed rock is combined with other ingredients such as iron ore or fly ash and ground, mixed, and fed to a cement kiln. The cement kiln heats all the ingredients to about 2,700 degrees Fahrenheit in huge cylindrical steel rotary kilns lined with special firebrick. Kilns are frequently as much as 12 feet in diameter—large enough to accommodate an automobile and longer in many instances than the height of a 40-story building. The large kilns are mounted with the axis inclined slightly from the horizontal.

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The finely ground raw material or the slurry is fed into the higher end. At the lower end is a roaring blast of flame, produced by precisely controlled burning of powdered coal, oil, alternative fuels, or gas under forced draft. As the material moves through the kiln, certain elements are driven off in the form of gases. The remaining elements unite to form a new substance called clinker. Clinker comes out of the kiln as grey balls, about the size of marbles. Clinker is discharged red-hot from the lower end of the kiln and generally is brought down to handling temperature in various types of coolers. The heated air from the coolers is returned to the kilns, a process that saves fuel and increases burning efficiency. After the clinker is cooled, cement plants grind it and mix it with small amounts of gypsum and limestone. Cement is so fine that 1 pound of cement contains 150 billion grains.  The cement is now ready for transport to ready-mix concrete companies to be used in a variety of construction projects. Although the dry process is the most modern and popular way to manufacture cement, some kilns in the United States use a wet process. The two processes are essentially alike except in the wet process, the raw materials are ground with water before being fed into the kiln.

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The Lost Art Of Concrete

Cement Contractors

The Lost Art Of Concrete

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The saying “They don’t build ‘em like they used to” is literal truth in the concrete industry.

For decades, modern science has struggled to work out how ancient societies such as the Romans were able to create buildings, monuments, and roadways which are still visible and even in use today, when the average lifespan of modern concrete tends to be far more modest. Now, a team of scientists from the University of Utah believes they may have found the surprising answer to this centuries-old mystery. Modern concrete uses Portland cement as its base, which is a fine powder created from lime, chalk, sandstone, iron and other materials and then combined with aggregates of varying sizes. However, the Romans used a type of cement created from the ash of certain volcanoes. These volcanoes’ emissions contained a rare combination of mineral elements which only occurs naturally in very specific areas with particular geological profiles.

What’s most surprising is that the minerals which make Roman cement different from Portland cement appear to react to seawater, which encourages the crystalline structure of the minerals to continue growing. This actually makes the concrete self-healing and impedes cracking, a feat modern science is still trying to replicate. This discovery of how Roman concrete was made is important because it could lead to greener and more eco-friendly concrete production and paving technologies, as well as structures with higher strength, structural integrity and longevity under adverse conditions than modern concrete allows for. In addition, Roman concrete did not use reinforcing steel such as a wire mesh mat or rebar, both of which Portland cement will corrode and degrade over time. This may lead to significant cost reductions for new construction on structures like bridges, building footings and other applications.

However, the research team warns it’s too early to get too excited about Roman concrete. First, Roman concrete relies on very specific minerals, namely tobermorite and phillipsite, being present in certain quantities. The researchers say the composition of Roman concrete was largely a matter of luck and being in the right place, at the right time, with access to the right materials. Second, we don’t yet know exactly how the Romans made their cement or what the process was for mixing it with aggregate and placing it. This by itself may leave us several years, or even decades, away from being able to use Roman concrete effectively. Despite these hurdles, the concepts behind Roman concrete and other green discoveries from the ancient world are constantly being studied, evaluated and applied to our modern understanding of how to build things that last.

At Calvac Paving, we’ve been serving the Bay Area for over 45 years in the most environmentally friendly, safe and expedient way possible. We’re always on the lookout for new developments, technologies and ideas which will let us do our jobs more effectively, with less impact on the world we all share. To learn more about our commitment to the environment, or how Calvac Paving can help you with your next project, contact us at: Calvac Paving 2645 Pacer Ln San Jose, CA 95111 (408) 837-9021

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