SP-002(07): Manual of Concrete Inspection

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This manual is intended to guide, assist, and instruct concrete inspectors and others engaged in concrete construction and testing, including field engineers, construction superintendents, supervisors, laboratory and field technicians, and workers. Designers may also find the manual to be a valuable reference by using the information to better adapt their designs to the realities of field construction. Because of the diverse possible uses of the manual and the varied backgrounds of the readers, it includes the reasoning behind the technical instructions.

The field of concrete construction has expanded dramatically over the years to reflect the many advances that have taken place in the concrete industry. Although many of the fundamentals presented in previous editions of this manual remain relevant and technically correct, this tenth edition incorporates new material to address these advances in technology. A list of only a few of the recent developments in materials, equipment, and processes includes:

- Shrinkage-compensating cement;

- Increased use of supplementary cementitious materials (SCMs);

- Polymer-modified mixtures;

- Self-consolidating concretes;

- New and refined admixtures;

- Fiber-reinforced concrete;

- Epoxy resins;

- High-capacity and automated production equipment;

- High-performance and high-strength concrete; and

- Epoxy-coated and stainless steel-clad reinforcement.

The need to cover new issues affecting inspection is the reason ACI Committee 311 continues to revise the ACI Manual of Concrete Inspection. In preparing this edition of the manual, as with previous editions, the committee's task was to interpret the policies set forth by other authorized bodies rather than to make policy on construction practices. The main emphasis of the manual is on the technical aspects of inspection and construction. For further information about construction practices, readers are encouraged to refer to the ACI Manual of Concrete Practice.

Because the content of this manual is general and broad in nature, no part of the manual should be included by reference in contract documents. Applicable inspection requirements for each project should be determined and included in the specifications.


Document Details

Author: ACI Committee 311

Publication Year: 2007

Pages: 196

ISBN: 9780870312755

Categories: Inspection

Formats: Protected PDF/Web View

This document is Historical

Table of Contents

Chapter 1—Inspection and the inspector

1.1—Inspection processes

1.1.1—Why inspection is needed

1.1.2—Purposes of inspection

1.1.3—Owner and contractor inspections



1.2.2—Education and certification


1.2.4—Relations with contractors, supervisors, and workers


1.3—Importance of clear specifications

Chapter 2—Statistical concepts for quality assurance

2.1—Quality-control and quality-acceptance inspections

2.2—Traditional quality assurance

2.3—Statistical concepts and procedures

2.4—Basic statistical concepts


2.4.2—Normal distribution curves

2.4.3—Applying normal distribution curves to concrete compressive strength

2.5—Statistical tools

2.5.1—Frequency distributions

2.5.2—Control charts

Appendix 1—Sampling by random numbers

A1.1—Example 1: Sampling by time sequence

A1.2—Example 2: Sampling by material weight

A1.3—Example 3: Sampling by depth of concrete pavement

Appendix 2—Normal distribution curves

Appendix 3—Computing standard deviation and

required average concrete strength

A3.1—Calculating standard deviation s

A3.2—Calculating required average strength fcr′

Appendix 4—Control charts on concrete materials

A4.1—Example 1: Calculations to determine moving averages for sand-equivalent test

A4.2—Example 2: Calculations to determine moving averages for 1-1/2 x 3/4 in. concrete aggregate (maximum variation of percentage of material passing 1 in. sieve)

Chapter 3—Inspection and testing of materials


3.1.1—Standard types

3.1.2—Blended cements and other hydraulic cements

3.1.3—Optional requirements

3.1.4—Sampling and testing procedures



3.2.2—Sampling procedures



3.5—Steel reinforcement

3.6—Curing compounds

3.7—Joint materials

Appendix 5—Aggregate sampling and testing

A5.1—Sieve or screen analysis of fine and coarse aggregate: ASTM C136

A5.2—Sampling aggregates: ASTM D75

A5.3—Materials finer than No. 200 (75 μm) sieve: ASTM C117

A5.4—Clay lumps and friable particles in aggregates: ASTM C142

A5.5—Organic impurities in fine aggregate: ASTM C40

A5.6—Specific gravity and absorption of coarse aggregate: ASTM C127

A5.7—Specific gravity and absorption of fine aggregate: ASTM C128

A5.8—Total moisture content of aggregate by drying: ASTM C566

Chapter 4—Handling and storage of materials


4.1.1—Storage and hauling of bulk cement

4.1.2—Storage of bagged cement


4.2.1—Storage in stockpiles

4.2.2—Storage in bins

4.2.3—Finish screening


4.3—Supplementary cementitious materials


Chapter 5—Fundamentals of concrete

5.1—Nature of concrete


5.1.2—Water-cementitious material ratio

5.2—Fresh concrete



5.2.3—Hydration, setting, and hardening

5.2.4—Heat of hydration

5.3—Hardened concrete




5.3.4—Chemical attack

5.3.5—Freezing-and-thawing effects

5.3.6—Alkali-aggregate reactivity

5.3.7—Volume changes

Chapter 6—Proportioning and control of concrete mixtures

6.1—Factors to consider

6.2—Methods of specifying concrete proportions

6.2.1—Strength specifications

6.2.2—Prescriptive specifications

6.3—Proportioning for specified strength or w/cm

6.3.1—Cement types

6.4—Concrete with supplementary cementitious materials

6.4.1—Mixture proportioning and control

6.4.2—Water-cementitious material ratio

6.4.3—Aggregate selection

6.4.4—Air entrainment

6.4.5—Quantity of paste

6.4.6—Proportion of fine-to-coarse aggregate

6.5—Proportioning for resistance to severe exposure conditions

6.5.1—Paste quality

6.5.2—Required air entrainment

6.5.3—Aggregate proportions

6.5.4—Proportioning by absolute volume

6.5.5—Computing absolute volume and percentage of solids

6.5.6—Example of proportioning by absolute volume

6.6—Control of concrete proportions

6.6.1—Laboratory batch quantities

6.6.2—Field batch quantities

6.6.3—Field control of selected proportions

6.7—Computations for yield

6.7.1—Density method

Chapter 7—Batching and mixing

7.1—Batching operations

7.1.1—Measurement tolerances

7.1.2—Weighing equipment

7.1.3—Batching equipment

7.1.4—Measuring water

7.1.5—Measuring admixtures

7.2—Mixing operations

7.2.1—Central or site mixing

7.2.2—Ready mixed concrete

7.2.3—Volumetric batching and mixing

7.3—Plant inspection

7.3.1—Control of water content

7.3.2—Control of air content

7.3.3—Control of temperature

7.4—Placing inspection

7.4.1—Control of slump loss

7.4.2—Control of consistency

7.4.3—Measuring concrete quantity

Chapter 8—Inspection before concreting

8.1—Preliminary study

8.2—Stages of preparatory work

8.3—Excavations and foundations

8.3.1—Building slabs-on-ground

8.3.2—Building foundations

8.3.3—Underwater placements

8.3.4—Pile foundations

8.4—Forms for buildings

8.4.1—Form tightness and alignment


8.4.3—Preventing bulging and settlement

8.4.4—Coating for release

8.4.5—Form reuse and maintenance


8.5.1—Cutting and bending

8.5.2—Storage and handling


8.6.1—Cover depth

8.6.2—Splicing, welding, and anchoring



8.7—Embedded fixtures


8.9—Final inspection before placing


Chapter 9—Concreting operations

9.1—Placing conditions

9.2—Handling of concrete






9.4.1—Unformed surfaces

9.4.2—Formed surfaces

9.5—Construction joints



Chapter 10—Form removal, reshoring, curing, and protection

10.1—Removal of forms and supports

10.1.1—Time of removal

10.1.2—Multistory work

10.2—Protection from damage



10.3.1—Moist curing

10.3.2—Membrane curing

10.3.3—Impermeable sheets

10.3.4—Accelerated curing

10.4—Curing and protection during weather extremes

10.4.1—Cold weather

10.4.2—Hot weather

Chapter 11—Postconstruction inspection of concrete

11.1—Acceptance inspection

11.2—Visual inspection (condition survey)

11.3—Other roles and responsibilities

11.3.1—Nondestructive evaluation (NDE)

11.3.2—Destructive testing


11.4—Observations leading to repair/rehabilitation

11.4.1—Minor defects

11.4.2—Structural defects

Chapter 12—Slabs for buildings

12.1—Positioning of reinforcement

12.2—Mixture requirements


12.3.1—Subgrade and subbase

12.3.2—Placing and consolidation of concrete


12.3.4—Hardened surfaces

12.3.5—Two-course construction and special toppings

12.3.6—Curing and protection

12.4—Structural slabs

12.5—Joint construction

Chapter 13—Pavement slabs and bridge decks

13.1—Foundation (subgrade and subbase course)

13.1.1—Fine grading

13.1.2—Stabilized base


13.2.1—Keyway forms

13.3—Steel reinforcement


13.3.2—Installation methods



13.4.2—Mixture proportioning

13.4.3—Batching and mixing

13.5—Paving operations

13.5.1—Concrete placement


13.5.3—Slipform paving

13.5.4—Fixed-form paving



13.5.7—Curing and protection

13.6—Final acceptance


13.7.1—Transverse contraction joints

13.7.2—Transverse construction joints

13.7.3—Longitudinal contraction joints

13.7.4—Longitudinal construction joints

13.7.5—Expansion joints

13.7.6—Joint sealing

13.8—Bridge decks

13.8.1—Concrete placement


Chapter 14—Architectural concrete

14.1—Determining requirements for acceptability

14.1.1—Preconstruction samples

14.2—Importance of uniformity


14.3.1—Form sheathing or lining

14.3.2—Textures and patterns

14.3.3—Form joints

14.3.4—Form sealers and release agents

14.3.5—Form ties

14.3.6—Form removal


14.5—Concrete materials and mixture proportions




14.6—Batching, mixing, and transporting

14.7—Placing and consolidation

14.8—Surface treatments


14.8.2—Bush hammering


14.8.4—Manual treatment

14.8.5—Exposed-aggregate finishes

14.9—Curing and protection


14.11—Precast members

14.11.1—Storage and transportation


14.12—Final acceptance

14.12.1—Bug holes

14.12.2—Color variations

Chapter 15—Special concreting methods

15.1—Slipforming vertical structures


15.1.2—Reinforcing steel

15.1.3—Control of concrete placement

15.1.4—Finishing and curing

15.1.5—Mixture requirements

15.2—Slipforming cast-in-place pipe


15.2.2—Control of concrete placement

15.3—Tilt-up construction

15.3.1—Casting platform


15.3.3—Bond prevention

15.3.4—Concrete placement

15.3.5—Panel erection

15.4—Lift-slab construction


15.4.2—Bond prevention

15.4.3—Slab erection

15.5—Preplaced-aggregate concrete

15.5.1—Aggregate placement

15.5.2—Grout materials and mixing

15.5.3—Grouting operations

15.6—Underwater concrete construction

15.6.1—Equipment and methods

15.6.2—Mixture requirements for tremie concrete

15.7—Vacuum dewatering of concrete

15.7.1—Equipment and methods

15.7.2—Reduction in slab thickness

15.8—Pumped concrete

15.8.1—Types of equipment

15.8.2—Mixture requirements

15.8.3—Control of placement

15.8.4—Taking concrete samples


15.9.1—Shotcreting processes

15.9.2—Mixture proportions


15.9.4—Forms and ground wires

15.9.5—Surface finishing

15.9.6—Curing and protection

15.9.7—Control testing

Chapter 16—Special types of concrete

16.1—Structural lightweight-aggregate concrete


16.1.2—Mixture proportioning and control


16.1.4—Batching and mixing

16.1.5—Placing, consolidation, and finishing

16.1.6—Curing and protection

16.2—Lightweight fill concrete


16.2.2—Mixture proportioning and testing

16.3—Low-density concrete


16.3.2—Foams for cellular concrete

16.3.3—Mixture proportioning and control


16.3.5—Batching and mixing

16.3.6—Placing and consolidation

16.3.7—Curing and protection

16.4—Heavyweight concrete


16.4.2—Mixture proportions and control

16.4.3—Batching and mixing

16.4.4—Placing, consolidation, and finishing

16.4.5—Curing and protection

16.5—Mass concrete for dams

16.5.1—Mixture proportioning


16.5.3—Temperature control

16.5.4—Special equipment and procedures

16.6—Structural mass concrete

16.7—Shrinkage-compensating concrete


16.7.2—Mixture proportioning and control

16.7.3—Production, placing, and finishing

16.7.4—Curing and protection

16.8—High-performance concrete

Chapter 17—Precast and prestressed concrete

17.1—Precast concrete

17.1.1—Scope of inspection

17.1.2—Inspecting for quality control and quality assurance

17.1.3—Record keeping and test reports


17.1.5—Embedded items

17.1.6—Bar and wire reinforcement


17.1.8—Handling, storage, and transportation



17.2—Precast prestressed concrete

17.2.1—Concrete materials

17.2.2—Tendons for pretensioning

17.2.3—Tendon handling and storage

17.2.4—Attachments for tendons

17.2.5—Deflection devices

17.2.6—Tensioning of tendons

17.2.7—Wire failure in tendons


17.3—Cast-in-place prestressed concrete

17.3.1—Concrete materials

17.3.2—Post-tensioning tendons

17.3.3—Anchorages and tensioning

17.3.4—Grouting procedures

17.3.5—Postconstruction inspection

Chapter 18—Grout, mortar, and stucco

18.1—Pressure grouting

18.2—Grouting under base plates and machine bases

18.2.1—Damp-pack mortar

18.2.2—Gas-forming grouts

18.2.3—Catalyzed metallic grouts

18.2.4—Cementitious systems

18.2.5—Nonshrink grouts

18.3—Mortar and stucco

Chapter 19—Testing of concrete


19.2—Tests of freshly mixed concrete


19.2.2—Air content

19.2.3—Density of freshly mixed concrete: ASTM C138/



19.3—Strength tests

19.3.1—Compressive strength: ASTM C31/C31M, C192/C192M, and C39/C39M

19.3.2—Capping cylindrical concrete specimens for compressive strength tests: ASTM C617

19.3.3—Use of unbonded caps for compressive strength tests: ASTM C1231/C1231M

19.3.4—Testing concrete cylinders: ASTM C39/C39M

19.3.5—Flexural strength of concrete: ASTM C31/C31M, C192/C192M, C78, and C293

19.3.6—Molding flexural specimens

19.3.7—Curing flexural specimens

19.3.8—Testing beams for flexural strength

19.3.9—Splitting tensile strength of cylindrical concrete specimens: ASTM C496/C496M

19.3.10—Compressive strength of lightweight insulating concrete: ASTM C495

19.4—Accelerated curing of test specimens

19.5—Uniformity tests of mixers

19.5.1—Truck mixers

19.5.2—Stationary mixers

19.5.3—Washout test for coarse-aggregate content

19.5.4—Air-free density of concrete test

19.5.5—Air-free density of mortar test

19.6—Density of structural lightweight concrete

19.7—Tests of completed structures

19.7.1—Cores from hardened concrete

19.7.2—Load tests

19.7.3—Nondestructive tests

19.8—Shipping and handling samples

Chapter 20—Records and reports

20.1—General information

20.2—Specific information

20.3—Maintaining records

20.4—Quality-control charts

20.4.1—Concrete delivery ticket

Chapter 21—Inspection checklist

21.1—Materials (Chapters 3 and 4)

21.2—Proportioning of concrete mixtures (Chapter 6)

21.3—Batching and mixing (Chapter 7)

21.4—Before concreting (Chapter 8)

21.5—Concreting operations (Chapter 9)

21.6—After concreting (Chapter 10)

21.7—Special work

21.7.1—Cold weather concreting

21.7.2—Hot weather concreting

21.7.3—Air-entrained concrete

21.7.4—Two-course floors (Chapter 12)

21.7.5—Architectural concrete (Chapter 14)

21.7.6—Tilt-up construction (Chapter 15)

21.7.7—Preplaced-aggregate concrete (Chapter 15)

21.7.8—Underwater construction (Chapter 15)

21.7.9—Vacuum dewatering (Chapter 15)

21.7.10—Pumped concrete (Chapter 15)

21.7.11—Shotcrete (Chapter 15)

21.7.12—Structural lightweight-aggregate concrete (Chapter 16)

21.7.13—Low-density concrete (Chapter 16)

21.7.14—High-density concrete (Chapter 16)

21.7.15—Mass concrete (Chapter 16)

21.7.16—Shrinkage-compensating concrete (Chapter 16)

21.7.17—Prestressed concrete (Chapter 17)

21.7.18—Grouting under base plates (Chapter 18)

21.7.19—Pressure grouting (Chapter 18)

21.7.20—Mortar and stucco (Chapter 18)

21.7.21—Tests of concrete (Chapter 19)

21.7.22—Records and reports (Chapter 20)

Chapter 22—References

22.1—Referenced standards and reports

22.2—Cited references

Appendix A—Guide for Concrete Inspection (ACI 311.4R-05)

Appendix B—Guide for Concrete Plant Inspection

and Testing of Ready-Mixed Concrete (ACI 311.5-04)


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