Alternative Uses for Recycled Concrete

After water, concrete is the second most consumed material in the world; we can find all around us in the form of buildings. The construction and demolition of buildings can create large quantities of leftover concrete which sometimes ends up in landfill or rubbish tips. In a landfill, the leftover concrete can sit wasted for centuries while we could be recycling it. This article will explore alternative uses for recycled concrete. But first, we need to know how concrete is recycled.

How Concrete is Recycled

Leftover concrete is taken to a recycling facility where it is broken into small pieces using grinder machines. Any foreign particles like rebar or wood in the sorted concrete must be removed to make it useful. A magnet is used to remove rebar from the pavement. Sometimes concrete is placed in the water to remove contaminants. After the cleaning and sorting process is done, the recycled concrete is ready to use.

Different Ways to Use Recycled Concrete


Many municipalities and local communities have companies that recycle concrete into crushed concrete which can be purchased inexpensively. Alternatively, recycled concrete can be used for building purposes when cement cannot be extracted from recycled concrete. Recycled concrete can be used as a part of aggregates in the building process. These mixing concrete aggregates are used to reduce the amount of expensive cement in the construction process. These aggregates are also an excellent alternative to gravel as a drainage material in the wet areas.

A Layer of Gravel in Road Construction

While constructing a new road, a layer of gravel must be used to ensure the stability of the road. The recycled concrete can be used as a layer of gravel in road construction instead of new gravel. Many construction companies are using recycled concrete to minimise construction costs.

Retaining Walls

To control erosion on structurally unsound hillsides recycled concrete can be used to build a retaining wall. It can also be used to create a planting site for a terraced garden. A layer of gravel or broken up concrete at the base can bring extra stability to your terraced garden.

Raised Garden Beds

The raised garden bed has become one of the most popular gardening preference for many gardeners for a number of reasons. The building of a raised garden bed is costly, and those who are frugal will make good use of recycled concrete. Creating a raised garden bed using recycled materials saves money for gardeners and can sometimes even ended up costing nothing.

Foundation for a Breakwater

Recycled concrete can be used as riprap to prevent the erosion of the river banks, shorelines and other structures at the edge of the water. Recycled concrete is now being used by many communities and companies to build these foundations.

Recycled concrete can provide an environmentally friendly and cost-effective solution for minimising the use of conventional materials. Most importantly, we should use recycled materials more and waste less. At Metropolitan Transfer Station, we care about the environment and encourage people to use recycled materials where possible. There is still time to save our planet from the excess waste.

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