30 Construction Tools – Concrete Tools You Might Need
Once wet concrete starts to pour, you need to be prepared to move quickly with cement tools. No one wants to get to the job site and realize they left a concrete tool behind.
Here’s our 30 concrete tools list you might need on a concrete construction site from start to finish:
Construction Tools for Pouring Cement
Um, naturally, right? But whether you’re mixing in a truck, a portable mixer, or a wheelbarrow, you want to ensure your concrete is thoroughly mixed for maximum strength and durability.
Ideal for transporting (or even mixing) small batches of concrete or tools on the job site.
3. Rubber Boots or Work Boots
Concrete is stiff stuff, and wearing waterproof boots is the best way to get through it and prevent contact with your skin. It’s also easy to rinse your footwear after the concrete is down.
Many concrete mixes contain potentially caustic admixtures that can cause serious burns from extended contact with bare skin. Gloves prevent overexposure to these components (and save a few occasional blisters, too).
5. Safety Glasses
Standard on most job sites, wearing safety glasses is an important safety measure when drilling, grinding, power trowelling or sawing concrete.
If the site of the concrete slab is to be prepped with a sub-base of any type, a compactor helps settle the stone or aggregate into position.
Both the sub-base and slab surface must be level. A standard long-line level, or a laser level, will let you verify that the slab is completely according to spec before pouring and after.
8. Tape Measures
Concrete forms and slab depth need the same “measure twice, pour once” verification as any other material on the job site. They are also useful for testing placement and mapping.
9. Moisture Retarders
Moisture or vapor retarders are used to prevent water vapor from intruding on a finished concrete slab. They are generally placed directly under on grade or below grade slabs.
Reciprocating saws, circular saws or grinders can be necessary to cut rebar or forms on the job site. They can also be necessary if a problem develops under the slab and a portion of the concrete has to be removed after it has set and dried.
Shovels help distribute concrete around the job site to fill in gaps left during the pouring process or for smaller applications. Square-ended shovels generally work better for concrete; rounded ones spread concrete unevenly.
12. Rakes and Come-Along Rakes
Using a rake is the quickest way to begin getting the freshly-poured concrete spread more uniformly into place. Garden rakes work but concrete rakes, also called come-along rakes, have a more scooped blade for more easily pre-leveling new concrete. Concrete rakes also have a tine on the back of the blade to help lift rebar or mesh into position before the concrete begins to harden.
A tamper is used with low slump concrete to push the aggregate below the slab surface. There are types that are used standing on the wet concrete or roller types that can be used from the slab edge.
Concrete vibrators help release trapped air pockets and excess water from the concrete mix to prevent possibly compromising problems in medium to high slump concrete.
Screeds come in a variety of sizes and can be a specific tool (also called straight edges or bump cutters), or can be simple flat pieces of dimensional lumber. The purpose of a screed is to smooth concrete after it has been moved into place by scraping away any excess from the slab surface.
16. Bull Floats
Bull floats are wide-bladed tools on a long (possibly telescoping handle) that provide the first pass for leveling ridges and filling voids in the concrete after the screed work has been done.
17. Magnesium Floats
Magnesium floats (or mag floats) are smaller handheld floats typically used to float slab edges or to use for finish work on smaller slabs.
18. Kneeling Boards
For hand troweling work especially, kneeling boards provide a smooth way to support your weight on the wet concrete while moving easily along the slab surface.
Concrete Finishing Tools
Trowels also help smooth concrete surfaces for their finish coats before being left to dry. Hand-troweling is common for smaller slabs, or power trowels are often preferred for large slabs. There are varying types of trowels for specific concrete work.
20. Float Blades and Troweling Blades
A variety of blade types is available for floats and power trowels, each designed to accomplish different finishes. Some care must be taken during the troweling stage not to burnish the surface and prolong drying time.
21. Groove Cutter/Jointer Tool
For certain job types, grooving the surface also helps prevent cracking or excess damage from shrinkage as the concrete dries or during use.
An edger is a tool designed to round exposed concrete edges for a smooth finish.
A traditional finish for a concrete slab is a broom finish – drawing a broom across the surface of the almost-dried concrete slab for a slip-resistant surface. The finished look can be a smooth draw or a more artistic pattern.
After the slab has dried sufficiently, polishers can be used to produce a surface finish effect, from a gentle smoothing of the surface for traction and safety to a mirror-like shine for an aesthetic finish.
Grinding can also be used for aesthetic effects like a distressed finish or is also sometimes necessary if a slab surface has been over-trowelled and excess moisture is sealed inside the slab.
26. Dust Collection Systems
When grinding, polishing, drilling or sawing concrete, a dust collection system helps clear the work area and protect the health of the onsite workers.
Concrete Hand Tools for Testing Concrete
Ambient conditions play a big role in determining drying time. A thermo-hygrometer helps monitor both temperature and relative humidity (RH) in the space around the concrete slab and inform potential remediation methods to speed drying time.
28. Hammer Drills or Rotary Drills
Placing concrete anchors or doing RH testing requires drilling into a cured concrete slab. Hammer drills (or rotary drills) make the process easier by combining rotation with “percussion” – a pounding motion that breaks up the concrete faster for easier installation. And don’t forget the right bits for the job, too.
29. Concrete Moisture Meters
Concrete Moisture Meters can provide handy “spot checks” of drying slabs. However, care must be taken to remember that they, like the hood method or the calcium chloride method, only provide an indication of surface conditions.
30. Relative Humidity (RH) Test Kit
For an accurate indication of the internal moisture condition of a drying slab, RH testing with in situ probes provides effective internal moisture measurement. Backed by ASTM F2170, RH testing can provide necessary moisture data for concrete and flooring installers alike and prevent possible moisture-related problems down the road.
Jason has 20+ years’ experience in sales and sales management in a spectrum of industries and has successfully launched a variety of products to the market, including the original Rapid RH® concrete moisture tests. He currently works with Wagner Meters as our Rapid RH® product sales manager.
Last updated on February 17th, 2023
Thank you for sharing this comprehensive list of construction tools needed for a concrete construction site. As a student in the field of construction, this list is very helpful in understanding the various tools and equipment required for a successful concrete pouring process. The explanation and details provided for each tool is also useful in understanding their purpose and function on the job site.
Great Post about concrete construction. Thanks for sharing.
Before starting repairs or any other construction work, you need to spend time choosing tools so as not to buy something unnecessary or unsuitable. This step is as important as construction safety or compliance with building standards, so this article will be useful for contractors.
Thank you for sharing this informative article about construction tools. I hope there are a lot of contractors that could read this and be guided accordingly.
People have been using different types of construction tools to build their shelters and other necessary structures.Tools include various categories like hand tools, power tools, and machine tools. Tools include various categories like hand tools, power tools, and machine tools.
Great article! I really appreciate your effort in sharing your experiences with us, Keep up the good work!
Hi, Nice tips! Thanks for sharing your great experiences in how to using right your tools.
Awesome article! These tools are really helpful to finish the work on time. I appreciate your kindness in sharing your idea. Thanks!
I just love all of your unique and awesome tips. I learned a lot of new and innovative ways of maintaining our concrete construction site. I am looking forward to reading more posts from you. I admire your expertise. You are an inspiration.
I really appreciate you for publishing this blog here about 30 top tools concrete construction-site; it’s really a helpful and very useful for us. This is really appreciated that you have presented this data over here, I love all the information shared. Great article!
It was mentioned that when dealing with concrete, it is important to make sure that it is level. My brother is wanting to built a shed in the backyard, but will have to set a concrete slab first. I will have to let him know that it may be a good idea to get some form of a level before he starts with the project.
If you outline or create sections using brick, is there any special tips that one would need to know. I am replacing a 50 foot sidewalk at my mom’s house and I’m not sure if will use any brick or rock to make it unique and nice looking.
I don’t think people really realize that there are this many tools and equipment required to lay a simple concrete pad, especially if you want your project to turn out nice looking. As a contractor myself, I appreciate this comprehensive list!
I love that you mentioned compactors and how they can help settle the stone. My husband and I are looking for a concrete product that can help us as we finish up our driveway. We will keep these tips in mind as we search for a professional that can help us best.
Hi, you have an extraordinary creativity for your blogs. Continue composing more on these lines. Enjoyed perusing such an extraordinary bit of knowledge. Much obliged!
Thank you for helping me learn more about the tools used in concrete laying. My son is interested in becoming a concrete worker. He will enjoy working with all these tools.
Great article! These tools are really helpful to finish the work on time.
Thanks for sharing these tools! These are very helpful for concrete construction companies.
These tools are very important for concrete construction. Keep sharing!
I have a drainage ditch that runs thru my yard it serves the back end of our community. When it was built they laid some matting landscape material and used granite rocks to form a stream. I want to install a concrete aka half pipe drain to cut down on the mosquitoes. I have a gentleman to help me who has done some concrete work for me in the past with good results.
He is concerned that he doesn’t have the right finishing tools for it. Can yo guide me to the proper tools, I think I want to buy it or them for him.
Let me know and thanks for your time
It is really interesting just how many tools are needed to complete a job involving cement. If you were to attempt it on your own, you would end up paying a lot in supplies that you would likely only ever use 1-2 times, like come-along rakes used specifically for cement. Hiring a cement contractor could end up saving you money in the long run, as well as get you a more professional finish.
Do you know of a company that produces tools to make concrete slabbs,
Just the main components it self where the wet concrete is poured?.
I liked that you pointed out that knee boards could help with getting the concrete level. I would hate to have to worry about staying clean during this process. It does seem like knee boards can help you keep clean. It seems like it would be a good idea to have a professional help with installing concrete. It sounds like a more frustrating process than I thought.
Good recommendation on both parts. Everyone has skills that fall within their “wheelhouse” and if a task is outside of their comfort zone, always consult the professional.