The Comprehensive Guide To Concrete Building Material in Kenya

Concrete is one of the most versatile and sustainable building materials in the construction industry in Kenya. This guide will venture into concrete building material in kenya.

What is concrete?

Concrete refers to a compound material made of cement, coarse aggregates, and water to form a fluid mass that can be poured into molds to obtain the desired shapes which harden with time.

The cement reacts chemically with the components to bind them together and form a hard thing which is now the concrete.

The components of the concrete should be mixed in the correct ratios with the water-cement ratio being carefully considered because an increase in the cement-water ratio decreases the strength of the final concrete product.

Importance of concrete building material in Kenya.

  • Highly cost-effective

    Concrete is easy to maintain and often lasts long without requiring reconstruction work thanks to its high durability and resilience. This makes it a highly cost-effective material within the construction industry in Kenya.

  • Versatility

     Aside from being incredibly resilient and strong, concrete is also versatile and can be adapted and molded into different shapes and forms. It is also available in different textures each offering a different finish.

  • Energy efficient

    Within a concrete building, demands for heating and cooling reduce because concrete is a good insulator and has the ability to store energy thus moderating temperatures and subsequently saving you energy bills.

  • Strength and durability

     Concrete structures stand the test of time continuously and last many years with little or no maintenance required due to their strong, durable, and resilient properties.

  • Fire resistance

    Home structure fires are an inherent hazard with most building materials. concrete however is fire-resistant.


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Factors affecting concrete mix design for concrete building material in Kenya.

Concrete of different qualities can be obtained by using its different constituents in different proportions. The common method of expressing these proportions is in form of ratios for example 1;2;4, meaning 1 cement, 2 fine aggregates, and 4 coarse aggregates.

The strength durability and workability of concrete depend on the method of compaction, properties of the mix, and other factors during placing and curing.

These factors include;

  • Compressive strength of concrete

    This is one of the most important properties of concrete and significantly influences the mix design. The mean compressive strength required will determine the water-cement ratio of the mix.

  • Concrete workability

    The aim should be to have the minimum possible workability consistent with satisfactory placing and compaction of concrete. It is important to note that insufficient workability may affect the strength of the concrete because of insufficient compaction.

  • Concrete durability

    -The durability of the concrete desired will affect the type of cement, ratio, and chemical or mineral admixture used in a concrete mix. concrete durability is defined as the resistance to deterioration by an aggressive environment.

  • Size of the aggregate 

    The maximum nominal size of the aggregate to be used in concrete depends on the size of the section and the spacing of reinforcement. The concrete workability increases with an increase in the maximum size of aggregate therefore the larger the aggregate the lesser the cement required for the cement-water ratio.

  • Grading of combined aggregate

    – The relative proportions of the fine and coarse aggregates in a concrete mix significantly affect the strength and workability of concrete. The coarse the grading the leaner the mix will be hence lesser cement consumption.


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Bottom line.

Depending on the different requirements for the concrete used for the construction of your residential house in Kenya there are different grades and types of concrete available as a concrete building material in kenya depending on the method of compaction and placing and the relative components.


99 Construction Guide
99 Construction Guide

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