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Raft Slabs vs Waffle Slabs Concrete

Raft Slabs Vs Waffle Slabs

When you make the decision to build your own home, you begin to be confronted with choices you didn’t even know existed. Most people think that choosing foundations is a matter of deciding between wood and concrete but the process is a little more complicated than that. In this article, we take a look at the two most common types of concrete foundation and see how they weigh up against one another.

What’s the difference?

A raft concrete slab is the traditional concrete foundation and consist of steel reinforced concrete beams which are founded in the soul and then covered with at least 100mm of steel reinforced concrete slab. This style requires excavation trenches to situate the concrete beams.

The waffle slab method is a more modern technique which does not require any excavations and it made with polystyrene pods placed in a grid formation and separated by internal steel reinforced concrete beams and then covered with around 85 mm of steel reinforced concrete.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of each?

Waffle slabs are less expensive, easier to lay, and provide increased insulation. They are ideal for use on flat, natural, well drained soil or controlled fill with good surface strength. Waffle slabs can be used on non reactive soil sites or sites with mild to moderately reactive clay. However, waffle slabs are really limited in their use for these types of sites. Because they sit on top of the ground they do not do well in highly reactive areas, sloping sites, in soft ground conditions, or in areas known for high winds.

Although they are the costlier and take more time to construct raft concrete slabs are much more versatile and can be used on virtually any type of site. Raft slabs can be modified to suit the requirements of the soil, geology and elements on the site and they are the only choice if you are building on anything other than flat ground.

A final note

At the end of the day it’s best to seek professional advice about the best type of concrete foundation slab to suit the particular needs of your site. Once you’ve established what type of foundational slab best suits your site, the team at Iconcrete are here to help you with all your concrete construction needs. Feel free to get in touch with us by calling 0402 082 472.