Download PDF version (191.6k) The full article is available as a free PDF document.
Colored concrete is a product that is finding increased demand in today's market. Both ready-mix and precast producers are utilizing color with greater frequency, and finding that, in some markets, it is almost impossible to stay competitive without it. As demand for colored concrete increases, so do the methods used to create it. Integral coloring systems produce color extending all the way through the concrete. The expense of full-depth color can be avoided by using a thin layer of integrally colored concrete on top of an ordinary concrete base. Both aggregates and cement can influence the color of the concrete, so it is important to stay consistent throughout an entire job. There are many different kinds of pigments specifically designed for concrete. Some manufacturers offer admixtures that combine color, water-reduction, and set-control all at once. The pigments can be added to the mixture either in powder or liquid form. One manufacturer has designed a color synthesizer that will produce almost any color desired, using just four basic pigments.