Exploring Plain Concrete: A Foundation of Construction

Concrete, a fundamental building material, serves as the backbone of countless structures worldwide. “plain concrete” stands out as a versatile and widely-used variant among its various forms. In this article, we delve into plain concrete, understanding its composition, applications, and how to find the right professional to work with this essential material.

What is Plain Concrete?

Plain concrete, in essence, refers to concrete used in construction without any added strengthening materials. This robust material shares physical properties with stone, making it capable of withstanding tremendous pressure. Comprising a blend of cement, ash, gravel, limestone, and granite, plain concrete can sometimes incorporate sand, chemical mixtures, and water.

How is Plain Concrete Poured?

Plain concrete is created through a process known as hydration. It involves combining concrete with water, which then hardens in place after pouring. During hydration, cement reacts with water, forming new chemical bonds among the materials in the concrete mix. As the water gradually evaporates, the cement cures, ultimately transforming into a stone-like substance.

How is Plain Concrete Poured

Is Plain Concrete the Cheapest Option Compared To Options Like Exposed Aggregate?

Cost is a crucial factor when considering concrete options for your construction project. Plain concrete is generally more budget-friendly compared to premium alternatives like exposed aggregate or decorative concrete. Here’s a closer look at why plain concrete is often the cheapest option:

Material Cost

Plain concrete primarily consists of cement, aggregates, and water. The absence of decorative elements, such as coloured stones or specialised finishes, means that the raw materials required for plain concrete are more cost-effective.

Labour Costs

The labour involved in pouring and finishing plain concrete tends to be less intensive than the processes required for decorative concrete finishes like exposed aggregate. Exposed aggregate often involves additional steps like washing, exposing, and sealing the surface, which require more time and specialisedd skills.

Design Complexity

Plain concrete is straightforward in its appearance and application. It doesn't require intricate designs or complex patterns, which can add to the project's overall cost. Exposed aggregate, on the other hand, involves creating decorative patterns and textures, increasing labour and time requirements.

Maintenance Costs

Plain concrete typically has lower long-term maintenance costs. It provides a durable, resilient surface that is easy to clean and maintain. Exposed aggregate surfaces may require periodic resealing and maintenance to preserve their appearance, incurring additional costs over time.


Exposed aggregate offers greater customisation options in terms of colour, aggregate selection, and texture. While this customisation can enhance the aesthetics of your project, it also comes with a higher price tag.

Market Variations

Concrete prices can vary based on location, availability of materials, and market conditions. Plain concrete is less susceptible to price fluctuations because it relies on standard materials and processes. In contrast, the cost of exposed aggregate may be more influenced by market factors.

It’s important to note that while plain concrete is often the more cost-effective choice, it may lack the decorative appeal of exposed aggregate. Your decision should align with your project’s goals, budget, and desired aesthetics. If you prioritise affordability and durability, plain concrete may be the way to go. However, if you’re looking for a more visually striking and customised finish, an exposed aggregate could be worth the additional investment.

Ultimately, the choice between plain concrete and exposed aggregate depends on your specific project requirements, budget constraints, and aesthetic preferences. Consulting with a professional concrete contractor can help you make an informed decision based on your unique needs.

Main Areas Where Plain Concrete is Used

Plain concrete finds application in a myriad of construction scenarios, including:


Plain concrete offers durability, making it a popular choice for residential driveways. It withstands vehicle traffic and provides a solid surface.


When creating outdoor living spaces, plain concrete is often used for patios. It can be further enhanced with decorative finishes or colors.

Shed Slabs

Plain concrete provides a sturdy foundation for building shed slabs and small outbuildings.

Pool Surrounds

Plain concrete is a practical option for pool surrounds due to its resilience and ability to maintain a level surface.


Public walkways and footpaths frequently use plain concrete due to its strength and longevity.

How to Find the Right Concrete Conctractor to Lay Plain Concrete

When seeking a professional to work with plain concrete, consider these key factors:


Assess the quality of work provided by different concrete suppliers. Review their past projects and assurance ratings to ensure they meet your construction needs.


Understand that concrete prices are influenced by supply and demand. Build relationships with concrete traders to secure competitive pricing.

Delivery Terms

Coordination of concrete delivery is critical. Negotiate price and delivery schedules as part of the contract to ensure timely supply.

Plain concrete, with its innate strength and versatility, remains an indispensable component in construction. Whether you’re paving a driveway, constructing a patio, or laying the foundation for a shed, plain concrete is a reliable choice. To harness its full potential, choose your concrete supplier wisely, considering quality, price, and delivery terms to make your construction project a resounding success.

Get A Free Quote From Lake Macquarie Concreting Solutions For Plain Concrete

If you are looking for a concreter in Newcastle, Lake Macquarie or Central Coast, feel free to contact us today for a free no-obligation quote for plain concrete.

Please enable JavaScript in your browser to complete this form.
Step 1 of 3
Scroll to Top