Why should you use accredited concrete?

Using an accredited concrete supplier is key to a successful project. Ready-mixed concrete is in many ways a simple material made from basic materials but the batching, mixing and delivery process is crucial to the construction projects that depend upon it. If the concrete fails, then the whole structure is at risk.

By being accredited under either of the below schemes you are assured that the supplier has adopted the highest levels of product conformity certification and control;

Quality Scheme for Ready-Mixed Concrete (QSRMC)
British Standards Kitemark Scheme for Ready- Mixed Concrete (BSI)

Both these schemes include the three essentials for effective product conformity certification: approval of a concrete producer’s quality management system to BS EN ISO 9001; product testing by or calibrated against a laboratory accredited for the tests undertaken, and surveillance that includes checking the validity of the producer’s declarations of conformity by an accredited certification body.

When it comes to ensuring the correct concrete is used for the correct application, the British Standards Institution has gone a long way to simplifying the process by the use of designated concretes. These are essentially identified by their application and by definition are fit for purpose so a specifier has assurance that the designated concrete will provide the required performance. This is one reason why the National House-Building Council (NHBC) requires the use of designated concretes where the concrete is to be supplied by a ready-mixed concrete producer.

Non accredited concrete suppliers who claim to supply any of the designated concretes – GEN, FND, PAV or RC – may be committing an offence under the Trade Descriptions Act 1968. In addition, where such nonconforming concrete is used for housebuilding, it may invalidate the NHBC warranty and affect the householders’ structural buildings insurance.

The cost of quality assured concrete is nothing compared to the cost of any remedial works if there is a problem. It is also important to note that most insurance policies will not cover the cost of ripping out defective concrete and replacement. Choose your concrete supplier wisely.

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