What is Hydraulic Cement - Uses, Properties, & Mixing Process

Hydraulic Cement | Hydraulic Cement Uses | How to Apply Hydraulic Cement | Application of Hydraulic Cement9 min read

What Is Hydraulic Cement?

Hydraulic Cement is one of the cement types that is primarily used for concrete repair work that sets very quickly by chemical reaction with water (hydration) and gets solidified with the immersion of water.

It has the capability to react with water under ambient conditions to form a solidified and water-resistant surface. The hydration reaction in cement results in the formation of a strong solid mass.

Hydraulic Cement
Hydraulic Cement

Hydraulic cement is made up of premium properties like using rusting proof, corrosion, and shrinkage resistance, which is making it popular all around the world for repair works.

This cement is generally used to seal water leakage and set quickly when used for waterworks. Hydraulic cement has properties to get set within 5-10 min of water mixed in it.

This is a type of cement mostly used to seal the water leakage in the concrete structures and also a place where a structure is submerged into a water body.

It is a type of cement that is similar to mortar. It is generally utilized for sealing the structures and in the conditions where structures are submerged in water.

It is made with limestone, gypsum, and clay, which is burned at high temperatures and primarily used to close cracks and leaks in concrete, especially those structures that have weakened with age.

Read More: How to Check Quality of Cement on Construction Site


How to Mix Hydraulic Cement?

Before the mixing process of cement, some initial preparation should be done which is discussed below,

Preparation of surface on which cement mix to be applied:

Surface Preparation before applying Hydraulic Cement
Surface Preparation Before Applying Hydraulic Cement
  • The surface to be repaired and on which the hydraulic cement mix is to be applied should be clean and dust-free. Oil, grease, dirt & loose particles will prohibit the cement from adhering to the surface adequately.
  • It is necessary for the temperature to be maintained between 45 F° (7℃) and 90 F° (32℃) during initial curing since the cement will not be durable on the frozen surface.
  • The area should be saturated for 24 hours before applying cement there on the surface.
  • Small cracks on surfaces & holes should be enlarged before the application of cement. V-shaped cuts are to be avoided.

Mixing of Hydraulic Cement

A mechanical mixer with rotary blades is recommended for mixing the cement to get a uniform mix.

The mechanical mixer should be saturated properly and drained of extra water before mixing.

Mixing of Hydraulic Cement
Mixing of Hydraulic Cement

Following the specification and instruction as per the IS 456:2000, the required amount of water is to be added to the dry mix by referring to the grade of concrete. However, one time it begins to harden, more water should not be added to the mix.

  • It is recommended that small amounts of cement be mixed at a time since it hardens very quickly and has to be placed within 10-25 minutes.
  • The concrete mix should be grinding at a relatively low speed.

Read More: Which Cement is Best for House Construction


Chemical Composition of Hydraulic Cement

The four main chemical constituents of hydraulic cement are listed below:

Belite (2CaO·SiO2)

Alite (3CaO·SiO2)

Tricalcium aluminate (3CaO·Al2O3)

Brownmillerite (4CaO·Al2O3·Fe2O3)

The chemical properties of cement are produced by silicates (belite, Alite) whereas the last two chemicals are essential for the liquid phase in the production process inside the kiln.

In hydraulic cement manufacturing, some admixtures are also added to impart it premium properties like shrinkage resistance, reduction of curing time, and setting time, to be easily used under water concrete structure construction.

The working principle of hydraulic cement relies on the cement hydration process which means the cement mix hardens when water is added to it.

Some chemicals agents present in hydraulic cement state the reactions due to the application of water, which causing the mixture to set & harden very quickly with reducing the curing time of cement mix.

The properties of these chemical agents make hydraulic cement impervious to water damage and to prevent the repaired surface from chemical attacks.

Therefore, This cement is mostly used for concrete construction work which is submerged in a water body or in contact with the seawater.

Another special property of hydraulic cement is its strength against shrinkage and effloresces. Tricalcium silicate & Dicalcium silicate existing in such type of cement cause the following chemical reactions after the addition of water in cement,

Tricalcium silicate+water→ calcium silicate hydrate+other chemical products

Dicalcium silicate+water→ calcium silicate hydrate+other chemical products

  • After these reactions, calcium silicate is the prime product, has a network of short fibers that enhance the strength of the cement mix greatly and also making the surface water-tight.

Suitability of Hydraulic Cement for Construction

The right kind of cement is to be chosen based on the construction nature and development work. Various mixes of hydraulic cement contain changing proportions of chemical components to suit specific necessities.

This cement is most preferable in a construction project where the speed of construction matters. In such a case, hydraulic cement provides less curing time and setting time of cement which make work faster.

However, it just gives a short window of time to work with it before it solidifies. Hydraulic cement is only suggested where the concrete mix is going to be used within 10-15 min of the time period.

This cement is capable to provide strength to structures that are in contact with water. Therefore, hydraulic cement is used for concrete structures which are highly durable in nature.


How to Apply Hydraulic Cement

Applying Hydraulic Cement on Water Leaking Wall
Applying Hydraulic Cement on Water Leaking Wall
  1. First step of hydraulic cement application is clean the damgaed surface with wire brush.
  2. Make sure the surface where hydraulic cement is to be applied is not infected with oil and dirt otherwise cement mix will not from proper and strong bond with the surface.
  3. The repair surface must be saturated with water atleast 24 house before hydraulic cement is to be applied on it.
  4. Try to use mechanical mortar mixture to form proper mix of hydraulic cement with water.
  5. Mix water in hydraulic cement as per supplier guidance.
  6. Any excess water left in mix should be removed before application
  7. Now, apply hydraulic cement for repair work where it is required.

Precaution While Using Hydraulic Cement

The hydraulic cement mix should be applied on the surface as fast as be possible.

Excessive blending/mixing will cause bleeding and segregation.

Some other admixtures or additives should not be added except if mentioned in the manufacturer’s instructions.

For constructing the underwater structures, hydraulic cement has particularly no other alternative option. Being impermeable to water, it is very well utilized in constructing structures that are in steady contact with water.

This type of cement mix doesn’t corrode or rust, hence consequently it holds its strength even when submerged in water. It is also incredibly useful for water-sealing.


Hydraulic Cement Uses

Hydraulic Cement is very useful for the following construction:

  • Footings and foundations
  • Heavy construction
  • Levee walls, sea walls, retaining wall
  • Bridges, culverts
  • Monolithic concrete houses, concrete block
  • Tower structures
  • Dams and breakwaters
  • Irrigation ditches, filter beds
  • Fireproofing structures
  • Chimneys and sewer pipes
  • Road foundations paved roads, sidewalks
  • Tunnels and prison cells

Advantages of Hydraulic Cement

  1. To use hydraulic cement no special skill are required.
  2. Hydraulic cement is set too quickly which helps in achieving desired strength as early.
  3. This cement has premium properties like shrinkage resistance and corrosion resistance.
  4. Hydraulic cement is most water resistance and can be used for underwater construction work.
  5. It is proven to economical for repair work compare to other chemical products in market.
  6. It is mostly reccomanded to be used for long lasting concrete structures.
  7. It is used for sealing the minor concrete crack of basement and various concrete damages surface cracks.

Disadvantages of Hydraulic Cement

  1. It major disavantages is that it has to be used within 10-15 min after water is added in cement. Its means it sets very quickly comapare to others.
  2. Hydraulic cement not reccomanded to be used in frost affected area.
  3. This cement is not flexible in nature. therefore it is only offers mechanical strength of structure.
  4. It cannot be utilized in areas where the temperature is below 48°F.

Conclusion

Overall, Hydraulic cement is a modern invention that reacts with water chemically to gain strength and form a hardened surface.

Due to its unique properties, it is mostly used across all forms of construction. Hydraulic cement does not shrink or contracts like ordinary cement, and a few mixes even develop solidifying.


FAQs: Hydraulic Cement

What is the difference between hydraulic cement and regular cement?

The main difference between hydraulic cement and regular cement is that hydraulic cement is able to set in wet conditions whereas regular cement essentially required dry conditions to set quickly.

What is hydraulic cement good for?

Hydraulic Cement is widely used to repair water leaking problems in concrete and masonry walls. This is because hydraulic cement is quickly set even in wet conditions.

Hydraulic Cement

Hydraulic Cement is one of the cement types that is primarily used for concrete repair work that sets very quickly by chemical reaction with water (hydration) and gets solidified with the immersion of water.

Does hydraulic cement stop water leaks?

Yes. Hydraulic cement is made for this purpose to stop water leaks quickly.

Watch Video: How to Use Hydraulic Cement

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