Liquid Screed: What To Consider & How To Avoid Any Mistakes

February 17, 2015

Installing liquid screed is a great option for projects which require a smooth and high-quality floor finish. It’s also suitable for many different environments such as, commercial, industrial and residential. However, ensuring it is installed correctly to avoid any screed failures is very important. Screeds provide a vital layer in a floor that bonds the finish that people see and walk across, to the concrete substrate of the building’s structure. If properly applied and maintained then most screeds need never been seen. However failures in the planning, application, curing or drying processes can lead to later problems, which can be very costly.

If you’re opting for a colourful or functional floor, then liquid screed is required rather than a bare concrete surface. Commercial and industrial locations will require a more robust screed, due to the fact that the floor will undergo frequent traffic as opposed to a residential project. Most screeds are used for internal projects only, often covering underfloor heating systems, acoustic or thermal insulation. However, there are polymer-modified screeds available for external installations as these are hard-wearing, water-resistant and are able to withstand a more demanding environment. It’s important to be advised first on which type of screed is best suited to your project, to ensure the outcome is correct and to avoid any problems in the long run.

There are two types of screed which are generally provided as an option to choose from. Liquid screeds are self-levelling screeds which smooth itself over a given area. The semi-dry version however, has to be leveled by hand or machine. An advantage to the latter is that they can be laid at an angle. Therefore, this is useful for applications that require the floor to slope to a drain or for the use of internal ramps. Self-levelling screeds usually arrive as a dry powder and require water to be added to it. This is a careful process though, as it is very sensitive to the ratio of water used; too much and it will segregate and crack, but too little and it won’t level correctly.

The potential floor failures that can occur if applied incorrectly range from cracks found in the floor, to weak and uneven layers. If cracks appear, it is important to work out the cause before repairing them. If the screed failure is being caused by underfloor heating for example, then fixing the cracks alone will not solve the problem, which will make this an on-going issue.

Underfloor heating is a popular reason for the use of screed applications; therefore we have provided you with a brief summary of the installation process you can expect for your screed application. Firstly, the building under construction needs to be weather and water proof with a substrate that is smooth and flat. In addition, all pipes of the heating system need to be securely fixed. If a pipe passes through a joint location it needs to be sufficiently sleeved, especially if a floating screed is being used.

The edges of rooms are fairly weak points in comparison to the rest of the perimeter, which means extra care should be taken to make sure the insulation around these areas is properly located. Once the screed is applied it should not be disrupted or the heating system commissioned during the curing process. Once this step is complete it needs to be gradually pre-heated before the floor’s finish can be applied. Project managers need to be careful when undertaking further work in an area where underfloor heating or insulation exists. Point loading can put too much pressure into one area, which can result to the insulation collapsing which then creates a weak point. The weak point will cause the screed to cave in if the stress continues, which can become a very costly and timely process once this occurs.

It is important for you to understand the requirements of your project and the viability of the different types of screeds and methods of application available to you. Factors that are crucial to consider for your project’s requirements include, the scale, budget, whether underfloor heating or other forms of insulation are involved, schedule and durability requirements. The planning process should not go un-missed or be a half-hearted job, as this is the first step to ensuring your chosen screed does not fail.

Our team here at Pump It Concrete offer free quotes for those enquiring and we will advise you on the best possible application suited to your project. Contact us today with your request by calling us on 01352 781 524 or email us at: Remember, no project is too big or small for us!


Benefits of Our Concrete Services!

January 6, 2015

Pump It Concrete offer a number of high-quality services for both commercial and industrial work. No project is too big or small for us! Whether your project is in the Public or Private sector, it doesn’t matter to us, we want to help.

Although all our services on offer are great, we want to provide you with an insight of the benefits each one holds. This will help inform your decision as to which service you may like to book with us. If you have any further enquiries, please don’t hesita...

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Do You Need Concrete Pump Hire?

November 25, 2014

Concrete is a highly versatile material that has been around for decades and for good reason. After all, skycrapers wouldn’t be built with concrete at their foundations if it wasn’t up to the job - concrete could even be up to the job that you’re after.

The composition of concrete might be slightly unrefined but don’t let that take away from its excellent properties. In just a short space of time, concrete can go from a sludge-like substance to a fully-formed flooring that can stand th...

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Liquid Screed: What is it?

September 23, 2014
liquid screed
Many businesses across the Northern regions have benefitted from our excellent liquid screed services as it’s one of the most versatile and reliable materials currently being used in construction. But what’s the big appeal and why is it something you too should be checking out?

Thanks to a fascinating composition which consists primarily of water-based solutions, liquid screed is a highly adaptive material that is easier to pump. When you compare this to standard concrete, you might notice...

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Concrete Pumping by Region: Pump It Can Provide

June 24, 2014

As one of the foremost in what we do throughout the local area, we here at Pump It Ltd value delivering the same quality service wherever we do business. This helps us to provide solutions to concrete pumping in Chester, Liverpool and North Wales amongst others.

For many years, we have been endeavouring to provide a high level of customer rapport and finished product, no matter how big or small the customer is. Whether it’s a personal project for a homeowner or a large-scale development for ...
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How is concrete made?

May 6, 2014

As one of the most durable material mixtures in the world, concrete has become utilised worldwide for many applications but we mainly associate it with buildings and construction projects and for good reason.

At its essence, concrete is a mix of paste, aggregates and/or rocks which gives it many dimensions of strength. By consisting of cement and water, the paste is excellent at covering coarse aggregates and upon hydration reaction, the paste will become solid and eventually what we know as c...

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Pump It Ltd delivers Liquid Screed in North Wales and beyond

April 16, 2014

Do you have a need to use liquid screed in North Wales building projects for either commercial or personal interests but need to find the experts to lend you a helping hand? Then Pump It could be just right for you.

For years now, we have been excelling at providing high quality concrete pumping services and remain one of the top companies in the north for it. Whatever the size or scale of your operation, we are here to assist.

As one of the regional forerunners, Pump It have been able to expan...

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Good Practice Concrete Pumping Definitions

February 27, 2014
2.0 Definitions For the purposes of this Good Practice Guide, the following definitions apply:-

additive - a material which is added to concrete to change the properties of the mix

ball catcher - a device fitted to the delivery end of a pipeline designed to catch the sponge rubber device used for cleaning the pipeline

banksman - a person who has had training to give directions to the operator of a vehicle mounted concrete pump during manoeuvring of the vehicle on site, by a...
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Why Choose Our Liquid Screed Services in North Wales?

January 30, 2014
A form of surface material which is fast becoming highly sought after throughout the area, liquid screed services in North Wales are on the rise and it’s no wonder when you compare and contrast it to conventional cement methods. So, what are some of the ways in which liquid screed is better for your business?


As liquid screed is compact and easy, you can process much more volume per day and almost 20 times as much as cement. The screed can fill up to 2000m2 which is far superio...
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The Benefits of Concrete Pumping North Wales

December 3, 2013
Concrete pumping North Wales has had a positive impact on the construction industry in the area and in all places it is utilised.

What is concrete pumping and how does it improve efficiency in construction projects?
Concrete pumping is a technique of transporting liquid concrete quickly to the places it needs to be using the latest technology in the industry, specifically ‘boom pumps’ and ‘line pumps’.

Almost all structures in the modern world require a certain amount of concrete in...
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About Me

Mr Pump It I'm the owner and operator of Pump It Floor Screeds, and have over 25 years experience in the construction industry. I've decided to keep a blog of all the different places I go, and jobs I do......mostly because I can't remember where I was yesterday!!