What’s the Difference Between Concrete and Cement? 

What’s the Difference Between Concrete and Cement? 

When it comes to making sure your construction project has the best quality aggregate materials at your fingertips, Pillar Aggregates has the best concrete, cement, and anything you might need to ensure your project has what it needs for a solid foundation and beyond. 

When it comes to the makeup of cement and concrete, aggregates are exactly what makes those two materials up – but what’s the difference between concrete and cement, really? We’ve got all of your answers. 

What is an Aggregate?

Before we get to the difference between cement and concrete, let’s tackle what makes up each of these materials. Both of these are made up of aggregates, or raw materials made from natural sources and taken from pits or quarries. Aggregate materials include crushed stone, river rock, masonry sand, gravel, crushed granite, and more. 

When you bind some of these materials using water or cement (more on that later), they will form compound materials, like concrete. 

Aggregate materials, cement, and concrete alike are keystones of any construction project, and one of the most important aspects of any project you’re embarking upon. Making sure you have the most high-quality products for your project ensures that you’re not only getting the most value for your money but so that you’re building with integrity and with dependable materials. 

Concrete vs. Cement

If you’re wondering what the difference is between these two materials, odds are you’ve heard each term used interchangeably to refer to the other and vice versa – but that would be incorrect. In actuality, cement is an ingredient of concrete and is not actually the same thing. 

So what’s concrete then? Concrete is a material used in a wide variety of construction and building projects that contains cement as one of its key ingredients. However, in total it’s a mixture of cement, stone, sand, and water. The mixture is strongest when less water is used amongst the mixture. 

That being said, water is still an important part of this mixture, as it’s the ingredient that will activate your cement (which binds your mixture!). Both coarse and fine aggregates are bound by cement, but mixes using larger aggregate materials are generally stronger than those with finer aggregates. 

When looking at the big picture, cement makes up around 10%-15% of the total concrete mix. After mixing your materials, cement and water will bind and harden the aggregate materials into a solid mass akin to a rock. The hardening process can often go on for years, which makes concrete become stronger and stronger as it ages. 

How to Find Aggregate Materials

When using quality aggregates in your project and as the pillars for your concrete mix, you’ll rest assured that the outcome of your project will be durable and high-quality – just like the ingredients that went into it! 

Plus, if you’re using low-quality materials, your mixture can be thrown off and can impact the thickness and hardening of your concrete.

Looking for the best aggregate materials in your area? Enjoy our quarry direct pricing and fast delivery without the middleman when you work with Pillar Aggregates

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