There are several situations during construction or contracting where steel or other strong metals will be used as support structures for concrete or other materials, and a great example here is known as rebar. Short for “reinforcing bar,” rebar is refers to metal – usually steel – that’s used to help increase the tensile strength of concrete for a variety of needs, including many of the most common construction types you see every day.
At Wasatch Steel, we’re happy to provide a wide range of steel tubing, steel sheet and numerous other steel products for all our clients’ needs throughout Utah. For those involved in a project that might require it: What is rebar, how is it made, what are its varying types, and why/where is it often used within the construction industry? Here’s a primer on everything you need to know.
As we noted above, rebar is short for either reinforcing bar or reinforcement bar. While it’s most commonly made from steel, there are other types of metal that may be used also, but the goal is the same regardless: To increase tensile strength in concrete and allow for these structures to withstand bending, torsion and shearing of loads.
Why is this necessary? Well, because concrete is known to be weak in the areas we just mentioned, at least compared to steel and other metal types. If this reinforcement was not used, these structures would at-risk of falling apart.
Rebar usually will be built so the metal component is not visible within the structure. Rather, it will be buried within the concrete. It’s usually made with ribs rather than smoothly, allowing it to avoid slippage within its structure.
As we noted above, the most common material for rebar use is steel, which is used because of its excellent tensile properties. It’s often made from forms of recycled steel, which will be melted down using an electric arc furnace, cooled using billets, and then stored until it’s needed.
From here, billets can be reheated to an elevated temperature and fed through extrusion tools, then necked down until its proper size is reached. Finally, it will be tooled to create the proper ribbing, which we noted above is in place to prevent slippage within concrete. Then it will be sheared to the proper length, and it’s ready to go.
Here’s a primer on the varying different types of rebar you might find, both in terms of the metal used and some of the additional properties:
As we’ve noted above, the primary benefit of rebar is the way it supports concrete during any construction project. Concrete is naturally weaker in certain areas, but supporting it with steel or other metals that are extremely strong and durable will remedy this issue.
Here are some of the specifics:
For the reasons we’ve gone over above, rebar has extensive and extremely frequent uses within the construction and contracting world. It’s one of the single most common metals found in today’s structures, including high-rise buildings and skyscrapers, parking ramps, bridges, home and building foundations, concrete piers, and even many of the roads and driveways you drive on regularly.
To learn more about rebar and specifically rebar steel, or to learn about any of our steel services or products in Utah, speak to the staff at Wasatch Steel today.