What’s formwork?

Print anything with Printful

Formwork is used to contain concrete for the construction of buildings and structures. It is important for strength and durability, and can range from 3 inches to 20 feet thick. Insulated formwork can reduce heating and cooling costs. After the concrete is set, it is smoothed by hand. Level formwork is important to prevent future cracks.

Formwork is the addition of base materials and concrete contained within retaining walls for use as a slab for the construction of homes, businesses, and other buildings. The importance of concrete formwork is based on strength and durability. These elements are needed to support the weight of the building or structure that is built upon it.

Concrete is extremely heavy, at around 150 pounds per cubic foot (2,400 kg per m3). This weight is held in place by a wooden or metal frame assembled outside the formwork before containing the concrete. The concrete is then poured from a concrete truck, cement mixer or concrete pump to fill the form to the required level.

The thickness of the formwork is determined by the height and weight of the structure that will be built upon it or how it will be used. Roads, sidewalks and patios also use a formwork design to enclose the concrete until it cures. This type of building formwork can range from 3 inches (7.62 cm) to 1 foot (0.3 m) thick. Large structures can use shapes up to 20 feet (6.09 m) thick for support.

Insulated formwork includes the use of insulated concrete formwork (ICF). These make use of Styrofoam blocks, in most cases, which are placed on the outer edge of the form before the walls are filled with concrete. This type of concrete formwork is generally considered to be more energy efficient, as it retains heat from the ground within the home or building and therefore can reduce heating costs. In the summer the opposite is true, so the coolness of the ground can help reduce cooling costs.

Formwork work includes building the exterior wood or steel for retaining walls and removing them as needed after the concrete is dry and hardened. Concrete truck drivers generally direct the flow of concrete into the form using the truck’s chute, and concrete pumps also require workers to place the concrete. After the concrete is set, it is smoothed by hand with specialized rakes or with a concrete leveler that works like a zero-turn lawnmower.

Level formwork should have the same strength throughout. This should help prevent cracks in the foundation at a future date, which is sometimes caused by water retention under the formwork. Building formwork that cracks can lead to costly repairs in order to raise and level the surface again.

Protect your devices with Threat Protection by NordVPN

Skip to content