The Concrete Network
Portland Cement Association

Portland Cement Association

Find Manufacturers: Admixtures

Aggregates are generally thought of as inert filler within a concrete mix. But a closer look reveals the major role and influence aggregate plays in the properties of both fresh and hardened concrete. Changes in gradation, maximum size, unit weight, and moisture content can all alter the character and performance of your concrete mix.

Economy is another reason for thoughtful aggregate selection. You can often save money by selecting the maximum allowable aggregate size. Using larger coarse aggregate typically lowers the cost of a concrete mix by reducing cement requirements, the most costly ingredient. Less cement (within reasonable limits for durability) will mean less water if the water-cement (w/c) ratio is kept constant. A lower water content will reduce the potential for shrinkage and for cracking associated with restrained volume change.

Here's an overview of the most important factors to consider when selecting and proportioning concrete aggregate.

Aggregate Information