Are Tilt-Up Walls Your Best Concrete Alternative?

What is and What Benefits Can You Get from Tilt-Up Walls?

Tilt-up walls
Tilt-up walls. Photo tilt-up.com

Tilt-Up wall construction is a great construction method that can be used in certain instances where cost and speed are required during the construction process. The methodology enable to have these walls constructed elsewhere or on site, and have them transported into the site, reducing labor conflicts and logistics in the project site. The process is aimed at reducing construction costs, speed the project and reduce labor congestion on site.

Does it Makes Sense to Use Tilt-Up Walls?

Depending on the project scope and size, tilt-up walls can be the smartest methodology to implement during the construction process. One of the most important factors when deciding whether or not using the system is the project size, as this process will generate more benefits when the building is less 40,000 square feet. Another important factor to consider is the intended use for the building, as more stringent building codes require special provision in the concrete, making it more difficult for tilt-up panels. Large warehouses, storage areas and building are the ideal projects on which the system can be used. A typical panel is about 5" thick and can be used with different heights and widths. The larger and bigger the panel is, the more challenges and special requirements you will need to have in order to erect and shore the panel.

Benefits of Tilt-Up Walls

The following list presents some of the benefits obtained when using the tilt-up panel system:

  • Savings - Less scaffolding is requires, and the process uses less concrete material. Also the process requires less workforce that cast-in-place concrete. Can apply to LEED Credit M 5.
  • Speed – If you are using tit-up walls,the schedule can be compressed, and the project will be completed earlier. The construction procedure can allow having several trades working at the same location while the panels are being manufacture off-site reducing labor congestion. 
  • Environment- Concrete emits low VOC and does not degrade indoor air quality. Tilt-up concrete structures in urban areas are recycled into fill and road base material at the end of their useful life.
  • Envelope- The building envelope is completed faster, so during winter the work inside the building can be completed ahead of time and multiple trades can work inside the building at the same time.
  • Safety – Since the walls are poured off-site, there is less probability that an accident will happen on site, however, crane operation during installation can add additional safety hazards, so be careful.
  • Custom Build – Tilt-up walls can be poured to produce different effects in the façade.
  • Waste- Reduced waste disposal from the job site, since there is less use of concrete, re-bars, forms and other related equipment.
  • Fire Safety – Panels are built following fire resistant code compliance. For example, a 6.5" concrete wall might offer a fire resistance rating of four hours or more.
  • Repairs - Reparation process is faster and easier allowing the repaired surface to match better to the original one.
  • Lower Operating Costs – The thickness of the panels provides great insulation to the building tenants and will also dissipate the energy received. Also the sound reduction property of the concrete is superior.
  • Architectural- Different textures and surfaces can be created with tilt-up walls reducing the need for painting, or adding architectural features to these walls.