Tips To Help You Unblock A Concrete Pump

Posted on: 15 August 2016

Most of the factors that are to blame for concrete blockages are related to concrete mixing mistakes, piping system defects, and a malfunctioning motor. The fact that there are many things that can cause concrete pump blockages sometimes makes narrowing down the real cause of a blockage hard. Trying to trace the source of the problem and then fix it while in the middle of a project can therefore be very inconveniencing. The good news is that it is possible to unblock the pump lines even without having solved the what-caused-the-blockage mystery. Being able to do this can therefore allow you to reduce the project's downtime. Here are tips that will come in handy in helping you to get rid of concrete pump blockages.

Finding the blockage

The first thing that will help in detecting the blocked section is the rate at which pressure builds up in the system. This is because while all blockages usually cause pressure increases, blockages that occur down the concrete pump lines tend to cause slower pressure buildups. Therefore, if the readings on the pressure gauge increase at a fast rate, you should focus your blockage-locating efforts in the area near the main pump area. On the other hand, if the pressure readings increase at a slow rate, then focusing your efforts on the delivery end of the concrete pump system is prudent.

The second thing that will help is tapping. Generally, blocked sections will tend to give off a thud-like sound when tapped. As for the unblocked sections, a ringing sound is what is expected. Simply use a hammer to tap on sections of the concrete pump line system and note the thud sounds. However, it is important to note that tapping will be useless when examining a soft delivery hose for blockages. In such cases, gently stepping on the hose and noting firm sections -- a sign of an aggregate jam -- is what will help you find the blockages.

Clearing the blocked sections

To clear a blocked section, you will have to start by allowing any free-flowing concrete mix that is around the blocked sections to escape. Simply removing the coupling next to the blocked section and lifting the line will ensure that this happens. After you are done, use the hammer to tap on the blocked section. The resulting vibrations should be able to force any dried concrete off the walls of the piping system. And if it is a case of a rock jam, the vibrations will cause it to shift, something that may then allow it to move through the line.

Taking advantage of these tips will allow you to continue working on your project while waiting for a contractor to fix the underlying cause of the blockage. It will therefore help to prevent unnecessary delays.

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