How to Make Sure Your Concrete Floor Complies with the Building Code
Some people choose to keep a dirt floor in their pole barns, while others decide to pour a concrete floor. This can help with moisture and can give the pole barn a more finished look. Here are some tips to help you pour a concrete floor and make sure you meet the requirements of your local building code.
Should You Pour a Concrete Floor Yourself?
Some people choose to pour a concrete slab themselves. While doing so is not too difficult, if you are not confident in your abilities or are not sure that your building is constructed correctly and complies with your local building code, it is best to hire a professional.
Preparing to Pour a Concrete Floor
It is best to have the shell of your pole barn completed before you pour a concrete slab. This can prevent damage caused by a pre-mix concrete truck. If your pole barn has solid walls, they will serve as forms for pouring the slab. If the walls are open or you have sliding or overhead doors, you can use a 2×4 as a form.
If your area gets frost, you should place a sub-base 6 inches or thicker across the site. The sub-base should not allow more than 5 percent by weight to pass the No. 200 sieve, and no more than 2 percent should be finer than 0.02 mm.
Before you pour the concrete slab, you should spread 2 to 6 inches of clean and drained sand or sandy gravel. Compact it to at least 90 percent of a Modified Proctor Density so the slab will not sink.
You should always use a vapor barrier, such as A2V reflective insulation, before you pour the concrete slab. This will prevent moisture from traveling up into the slab. Then put 3 to 4 inches of clean and drained sand on top of the vapor barrier. This will decrease differential drying shrinkage and floor curling. If you are not planning to use fiber-mesh to reinforce the concrete, put wire-mesh or rebar in the center of the slab to keep it rigid and prevent it from cracking.
Before you pour the concrete slab, the finished, graded compacted fill should be even with the bottom of the skirt board. If you want the floor to be thicker than 4 inches, you will need to excavate below the bottom of the skirt board. The top of the concrete floor should never be even with the bottom of the skirt board. That would cause the wall steel and doors to not fit correctly and could cause you to lose interior height. After the concrete floor has been poured, about 3 ¾ inches of the skirt board should be visible above the slab.
Check Your Local Building Code’s Requirements on a Concrete Floor
Your local building code will specify the required thickness of the concrete slab, the size of the wire-mesh, the thickness of the gravel or sand layer, and the size and location of the rebar. A building official may require structural engineering for a concrete floor. Once the concrete slab has been poured, you will not be able to make changes, so do research and ask questions to make sure you are complying with the building code.
Get a Quote for a New Pole Barn
CHA Pole Barns can design a pole barn for your needs. Whether you want to use it as a barn, a garage, a house, or a business, we can help you choose the right size, design, and features. Contact us today for a quote.
When you are ready contact CHA Pole Barns to talk about your pole barn project.