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How Far Can You Pump Cellular Concrete

“How far can you pump cellular concrete?” is one of the most common questions we’re asked about CJFill-UL Ultra Lightweight cellular concrete at CJGeo. Qualitatively, the answer is a solid “really far!”. Quantitatively, the answer depends on a lot of factors. The furthest that CJGeo has pumped cellular concrete was 5600LF.

Driving Factors

These factors drive how far you can pump cellular concrete:

  • pipe or hose size
  • generation rate
  • generation method
  • density of the cellular concrete
  • type of preformed foam
  • elevation loss or gain

Determining The Maximum Pumping Distance

The best people to determine how far you can pump cellular concrete are the people who pour thousands of cubic yards of cellular concrete a week. Our contact info is below. But, in general, this is how the various factors drive the answer to “How far can you pump cellular concrete?”:

Pipe or Hose Size

For very small pipes, pressure is often the limiting factor. Placement pressure drops exponentially relative to pipe size if placement rate is kept constant. So, the smaller the pipe, the higher the pressure it takes to place material. While it’s possible to pump 1600LF through 2″ line, you have to pump really slow, but it may only take about 30 minutes to fill that entire length of pipe. If you’re filling a very large pipe, they consume significantly more material per linear foot, so the amount of material you can make in a day may be the limiting factor, not the actual distance that could be pumped.

Generation Rate

There’s only so much time in the day. The more material you can make in a day, generally the more you can pump, and the further you can pump it.

Generation Method

High quality mixing, like CJGeo’s dry batch plants use, makes higher quality material. High quality material can be pumped longer distances without consolidating. Ready mix, paddle, and other low energy mixing methods make lower quality material that’s less tolerable of long pumping distances.

Density of the Cellular Concrete

The lower the density, the less mass there is to move, so the easier it is to pump long distances. High density material with sand, such as CJFill-UW, is more difficult to pump than neat mix material at the same density. The sand increases in the internal friction, which requires additional pressure.

Type of Preformed Foam

Cellular concrete made with organic preformed foams, such as Mearlcrete, tends to be less tolerable of long distance pumping. Fully synthetic preformed foams, such as Aerlite-iX, and Aquaer-iX handle long pumping distances well. CJGeo exclusively uses these synthetic foaming agents.

Elevation Loss or Gain

Gravity is your friend. Pumping downhill lowers pumping pressures, and therefore facilitates longer pumping distances. Because most cellular concrete is really lightweight, pumping cellular concrete uphill is significantly easier than pumping normal weight concrete uphill.

Speak With An Expert

Facing a challenge? Give us a shout or shoot us a text. Click the state marker for the location of the project for contact info for the appropriate rep.

Cellular Concrete Projects