Now that you have had a chance to look at your estimates you may be wondering why some of your bids include a pump while others don’t? There are 3 main reasons to consider a pump. In Most cases a team of wheel barrow pushers can be used but here are a few reasons why the pump is the answer.
The Mess – In the early years of my concrete career it wasn’t exactly rare to see the new guy spill a wheel barrow full of concrete. The penalty for spilling one was a 24 pack of beer to share with the crew at the end of the week. Even though the beer was great the clean up wasn’t… especially if it was on the driveway.
Once the 2-3 wheel barrows finished bringing in the concrete the next messy issue came up. We had to wash out the wheel barrows as well as the chute of the concrete truck. This becomes problematic in most yards. We have to pull landscaping rock back to wash out on the soil and then replace the rock at the end of the day. Not ideal.
When using a pump the truck driver washes his chute directly into the pump hopper. Then the pump operator washes his hopper back into the truck. A special j shaped hose is used to pump the waste directly into the drum of the truck to be disposed of back at the plant. Nice!
Terrain – The year was 1994. The crew were all athletes at the peak of their ability. I was on wheel barrow that day. A steep hill 60’ long stood between us and the patio we were pouring. We raced to lap one another and bragged about having the heaviest load over and over again. Wow! no wonder my knees are shot. Over the years we traversed planks, hills and valleys but like with many things once you see the light there is no turning back. If your yard is rough just pump it please.
Summer Heat – A warehouse, a pole barn, tons of sidewalk and every shape of patio possible have been wheel barrowed from distances that are ridiculous. It usually worked out just fine but once the air temperature gets too high you can have a hard time keeping up with the set. A responsible Contractor knows the importance of getting the concrete on the ground quick. A pump just can’t be beat for that. The other nice thing about the pump company we use (Davco) is that the operator handles the hose so it’s like having another guy on the crew while we pour.
Thank you for reading. Please take a look at the blog from time to time.