There’s some awesome things about winter. Basketball and hockey season rolls around. Thanksgiving and Christmas offer some much-needed vacation spent eating delicious food with friends and family. The snow provides a beautiful landscape when it covers the ground and trees. You get to watch holiday classics like Planes, Trains and Automobiles and Christmas Vacation for the 20th time. However, there are some drawbacks of winter as well. Especially in the frigid midwestern winters we experience in Minnesota. Icy roads, warming up our vehicles in the morning, sub-zero wind chill. And for construction sites, winter freezes the ground, making conditions for work extremely difficult.
To combat the frozen ground, construction crews have to find ways to warm up the ground so that they can execute their work. Two popular and effective ways for construction crews to combat the elements is by setting up ground heaters and laying down ground thaw blankets. By unfreezing the ground, crews are able to complete their work without missing deadlines due to weather.
When to Use Ground Thaw Blankets
Most construction work that requires digging into the earth benefits from the use of ground thaw blankets. Some examples of the types of construction work includes:
- Curing Concrete: There’s a ton of different reasons a construction crew would need to pour concrete on the job site. Doing so in the winter is a difficult task, as concrete needs to be at least 50°F in order to settle properly. Ground thaw blankets help crews keep the the concrete warm during the curing process, especially overnight.
- Brickwork and Blockwork: Similar to concrete, brickwork needs to be done above 50°F. Dropping a few layers of ground thaw blankets can keep the ground and materials warm overnight when the temperature drops the most.
- Landscaping: Nothing will stall a landscaping job quicker than the ground freezing overnight. By throwing down some ground thaw blankets, a landscaping crew won’t lose valuable work time waiting for the ground to thaw.
Setting Up Ground Thaw Blankets
To set up ground thaw blankets, you first need to assess the areas of your site that need to be thawed. Whether you rent out your thaw blankets or buy them, you’ll want to know how much space you’re going to need to thaw before you place your order. Measure out the space ahead of time so you have a feel for how many blankets you’ll need. Once you get your order of blankets, set up is easy. Just position them on top of the area you need thawed or warmed. Layering them is an effective tactic if you’re facing extreme conditions.
When to Use Ground Heaters
Ground Heaters come in a variety of size and can generate a ton of heat to warm the ground of your site. Some of the uses for a ground heater include:
- Thawing Frozen Ground: Any type of excavation of the ground is next to impossible when the earth is frozen. Use a ground heater to soften the ground.
- Curing Concrete: When it comes to curing concrete in the cold, using both ground thaw blankets and a ground heater is the way to go. On Site’s E1100 Hydronic Ground Thaw Heater is particularly effective.
- Keeping Your Crew Warm: Ground heaters will also warm up the air around the jobsite, keeping your crew warm so they can perform their jobs comfortably.
Setting Up Ground Heaters
Similar to setting up ground thaw blankets, you’ll want to know how much ground needs to be thawed before contacting a company to rent or purchase heaters. Ground heaters come in a variety of sizes, so deciding which ground heater you select will depend greatly on the temperature of the ground and the area that needs to be thawed. Typically when you set up your ground heater you will ensure that the tank is full of fuel so it can run overnight. That way when your crew arrives on site the next morning, the ground is thawed and work is ready to commence. Many heaters can run for several days. At On Site, we have heaters available that can run for as long as 105 continuous hours, like the E1250 Hydronic Ground Heater.
Rent Your Ground Thawing Solution From On Site Today
Working construction in the winter elements is never ideal for a construction crew. But, by providing your team with ground heaters and ground thaw blankets, you’ll be able to take jobs on later in the season and create additional streams of revenue for your construction business. To learn more about our ground thawing solutions, contact On Site today and tell us about your climate-related issue.