As leaders in drilling services for the construction industry, the team at National Drilling Services is very experienced in all types of drilling, cutting, sealing as well as demolition. One of the most common requirements from project and site managers is for concrete drilling.
With so much concrete used in buildings over the last few decades, it is inevitable that new projects require concrete to be drilled. Often the site plans for redevelopment of old structures require drilling holes through old concrete slabs or walls.
Other projects involve new recently poured concrete which can also require drilling. These both come with their own challenges, but National Drilling Services has the skill, knowledge, experience and equipment to drill through all kinds of concrete and masonry.
Why drilling concrete is challenging
Obviously, the purpose of concrete is to be solid and strong which inevitably means it will be difficult to drill through. To be fit for purpose, not only is concrete hard and dense, but it can also have additional aggregate stones embedded in the mix.
With the material being so dense, drill bits can quickly lose their sharpness and become dull, making the process of drilling a hole much slower and harder work for the drill operator. This is why we like to use diamond tipped drills which create a clean hole quickly and accurately.
Diamond tipped drills are also considerably less noisy than the traditional hammer drills, working at approximately 60dB rather than nearer to 85dB.
Another method of concrete drilling used by National Drilling Services is tungsten drilling, which as a percussive method, is particularly effective for drilling in preparation of the installation of dowel bars and resin fixings. The reason for this is that the rough edge created by this drilling process is ideal for adhering resin.
As anyone who has drilled a hole as part of a DIY project will understand, drilling through any kind of masonry creates dust. When drilling through reinforced concrete the dust levels are higher still due the density of the material. Dust can be harmful if inhaled and also can clog the drill.
To counteract the dust, avoid inhalation and restricting the drill, water is used to wash the dust away. This also helps to keep the drill bit cool and avoid damage to the drill bit, which can quickly heat up due to friction.
Where the concrete is fresh and only recently poured, technically a hole can be drilled after 24 hours although an extra day is always advised to ensure the concrete is fully set. Timings can vary according to the environment, temperature and humidity.
Whichever method of concrete drilling is employed, before drilling commences our operators will check for water pipes, electrical wiring or ductwork and ensure that nothing maybe damaged in the drilling process.
You can find out more information about each of our drilling services or simply call us on 0161 443 2822 to discuss your particular site needs for concrete drilling.