How to level concrete

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How to level concrete

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Project Overview

Concrete is a great option for plenty of D.I.Y. jobs around the house. We’ll show you how to do the job right. You’ll learn how to level and smooth the surface of concrete. Plus, you will see how to properly use a straight edge and a finishing float. 
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coloured concrete
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Difference between cement and concrete

It is easy to get concrete and cement confused, but they are actually quite different. Cement is a powder that is one of the ingredients of concrete. Concrete is made up of cement, sand and aggregate. We compare the two so you can see the difference for yourself.

Step by Step Instructions

1 Level the concrete to the formwork
2 Smooth the surface of the concrete
  • Step 1. Level the concrete to the formwork

    Use your square mouth shovel to spread the wet concrete evenly around the inside of the formwork. Make sure all the corners are properly filled. Leave the concrete raised 1cm or so above the formwork. Then use your straight edge to level the surface. Work the straight edge side to side across the formwork, pulling it from one end towards the other. The straight edge will drag the raised 1cm of concrete in front of it, levelling the surface.
  • Step 2. Smooth the surface of the concrete

    Once the concrete is level, use your finishing float to smooth out the surface. Gently glide the flat of the blade across the top of the concrete. This works out any small imperfections left by the straight edge. Finish by removing any wet concrete that’s spilled over onto joining surfaces. And don’t forget to clean your tools before the concrete dries.

Tools and Materials

Tools

  • Gloves
  • Safety glasses
  • Square mouth shovel
  • Straight edge

Materials

  • Concrete finishing float
  • 5

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Health & Safety

Please make sure you use all equipment appropriately and safely when following the advice in these D.I.Y. videos. You need to be familiar with how to use equipment safely and follow the instructions that came with the equipment. If you are unsure, you may feel it is safest to consult an expert, such as the manufacturer or an expert Bunnings Team Member.

Grave health hazards are linked to asbestos, which may be in homes built up to 1990. Health hazards may result from exposure to lead-based paints in older materials and copper chromium arsenic (CCA) treated timber. For information on the dangers of asbestos, lead-based paint and CCA treated timber and tips for dealing with these materials contact your local council's Environmental Health Officer or visit our Health & Safety page. You can also use a simple test kit from Bunnings to indicate the presence of lead-based paint.
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