​Choosing the right materials for your home

​Choosing the right materials for your home

Cement

  • Cement is the most important material for construction
  • Choose cement keeping in mind the strength and durability requirements as well as the exposure conditions
  • Portland Pozzolana Cement (PPC) and Portland Slag Cement (PSC) is impermeable and dense, making it relatively stronger in the long run
  • Blended Cement is a great choice in areas with a risk of chloride and sulphate erosion as it is highly resistant to these chemicals

Aggregates

  • There are primarily two types of aggregates – coarse aggregates and fine aggregates
  • The stones that you choose should ideally be angular, cubical or a combination of different sizes
  • The coarse aggregates or stones should be inert, hard, strong, free from dust, clay and weed
  • The fine aggregates or the sand you use must be free of silt, clay and other organic materials

Water

  • Water should be free from impurities like oil, acid, salts, etc.
  • Sea water or sewage water shouldn’t be used for making RCC

Bricks

  • Good quality bricks are always hard and well-burnt
  • When you scratch it, it shouldn’t leave any imprints behind on the brick
  • The shape of the bricks should be uniform. Its edges should be square, straight and sharply defined

Things to keep in mind

  • Opt for cement manufactured by a reputed brand and make sure it has an ISI mark on it
  • Poor quality cement could lead to significantly higher cost later
  • Look for the week, month and year of manufacture. The strength of cement reduces over time
  • Avoid coarse aggregates that are elongated or flaky. Irregular sizes reduce the strength of the concrete
  • Always use potable/drinkable water
  • You can check the quality of bricks you’re buying with a few simple tests like these:
    • Test 1: Strike two bricks against each other, if there’s a clear ringing sound then the brick is of good quality
    • Test 2: If you drop a brick from a height of 3 feet and it breaks then it indicates that it’s not good quality
    • Test 3: When you immerse a brick in water for 24 hours, its weight shouldn’t be more than 15% of its weight when it was dry

Videos

  • Assess the quality of fine aggregates
  • Assess the quality of coarse aggregates
  • Choose good quality bricks
  • Types of cement
  • Best way to store cement
  • Manufactured Sand

PDF

  • Steps for Quality Brick Work
  • Materials for Durable and Strong Concrete
X
X
X
X
X
X

On to the construction

On to the construction

A strong foundation

  • The foundation is that part of the building which remains hidden, but bears the entire load of the structure
  • Once you’ve marked the lines, you can start digging and excavating
  • If there are any soft spots, make sure they’re dug out and filled with concrete
  • In case any part of the foundation comes above ground level, make sure it is covered with soil
  • The material you use should be chosen after keeping the soil bearing capacity in mind
  • You need to first mark the lines for digging the foundation
  • The excavation has to be done according to the slope, shape, pattern, etc. of the land
  • When you’re laying out the foundation, you need to make sure that it can take the combined weight, wind weight and imposed weight

Things to keep in mind

  • Use a right angle and line-string to mark the lines for the layout
  • If the land is excavated below the specified level then it should be filled with concrete
  • The foundation should be made at a level where the soil is firm and not affected by weathering

Videos

  • Excavation in gravely soils
  • RCC Footing
  • Plingth Beam
  • Backfilling & Plinth Filling
X
X
X
X

Getting the mix right

  • The first and foremost step is to get the measurement of cement, sand and coarse aggregates right. You can measure the materials either by volume or by weight
  • Weight batching is accurate and should ideally be followed on construction sites
  • The ratio of water and cement impacts the strength of concrete
  • If the water to cement ratio increases, then the strength of concrete decreases
  • It’s advisable to go with a mixer as machine mixing is more efficient and produces better quality concrete

Things to keep in mind

  • Avoid batching by baskets or buckets
  • If it is an RCC structure then you cannot batch materials by volume
  • Ensure correct bulkage of sand if you’re measuring it by volume
  • The mixing should ensure that the mass becomes uniform in colour and consistency and is homogeneous

Videos

  • How to mix concrete in a mixer
  • How to mix concrete manually
  • Disadvantage of using too much water for concrete

PDF

  • Tips on Batching and Mixing Concrete Ingredients
X
X
X

Build on a strong formwork

Build on a strong formwork

  • Formwork is a temporary or permanent structure into which you pour the concrete to set it
  • The quality of formwork you build impacts the quality of concrete
  • The formwork should be strong enough to bear both dead and light load

Things to keep in mind

  • Good formwork should be strong, solid and without gaps
  • Before you pour the concrete on the formwork, apply a layer of releasing agent (like grease mix or diesel). This makes it easy to remove and ensures a smooth finish

Videos

  • Best practices to set up formwork
  • Column shuttering

PDF

  • Ways to better your Formwork
X
X

Combining the strength of steel with concrete

Combining the strength of steel with concrete

  • While concrete has great compressive strength, its tensile strength is low. To balance this out we use steel
  • Steel also helps the concrete stay in place and keeps it aligned
  • Once cured, concrete tends to start shrinking and develops cracks; steel arrests the cracking

Things to keep in mind

  • Always opt for BIS approved steel
  • Buy full length bars to minimize laps and reduce wastage while cutting
  • The bars and rods should be clean and free of rust
  • Ask your engineer to do the reinforcement detailing for an earthquake resistant building

Videos

  • Selecting Right Quality Of Steel
  • Detailing Of Reinforcement
X
X

Handling concrete

Handling concrete

Placing the concrete

  • The concrete has to be placed as early as possible after being mixed
  • Concrete should be thrown from a height of 1 metre or less to prevent segregation
  • Don’t disturb the concrete once it’s been poured out
  • Concrete should be placed continuously to prevent the formation of irregular surfaces and cold joints

Removing air bubbles from concrete

  • Air tends to get trapped after the concrete is placed. The air bubbles need to be removed to make sure that the strength of the concrete isn’t compromised
  • You remove the air bubbles by placing a needle vibrator through a process known as compaction
  • You know compaction is complete when air bubbles stop appearing on the surface

Curing the concrete

  • The act of watering concrete after it has been placed to keep it hydrated
  • Curing strengthens concrete and reduces the appearance of cracks
  • Well cured concrete is a lot stronger and resistant to chemical attacks

Videos

  • Curing
  • Compaction of concrete
  • Placing of concrete

PDF

  • Effective ways of Transporting & Placing Concrete
  • Tips on Compaction of Concrete
  • Adding that final touch through finishing
  • Effective ways of Curing
X
X
X

Keeping your home waterproof

Keeping your home waterproof

  • You need to have a good drainage system in place with a proper slope so that water doesn’t get accumulated
  • Invest in good quality materials and make sure that the concrete work is proper and thorough
  • Ensure that your structural design and construction is proper to prevent cracks from appearing
  • To use the water proofing material, read the instructions given in the product catalog carefully or take the help of a professional

Things to keep in mind

  • If compaction isn’t carried out properly, voids appear which will lead to water leakage
  • Use waterproofing compounds around those structures that retain water
  • A Dam-Proofing Course prevents the movement of ground water to the surface

Videos

  • Water proofing of concrete
  • Procedure For Laying Damp Proof Course
X
X

Getting your walls plastered

Getting your walls plastered

  • Plastering protects your home from any sort of damage that the external environment causes
  • The walls need to be damp before you start plastering as dry walls absorb the water from the plaster
  • It can be done in two to three coats. Apply three coats only if the surface is extremely uneven
  • Once you’ve finished plastering the walls, they should be cured continuously for 10-14 days to prevent cracking

Things to keep in mind

  • When you’re mixing the plaster, make small batches that will be used within an hour
  • While you’re plastering the joints in between the concrete and brickwork, use a chicken wire mesh
  • Plaster work should be dried extremely slowly and you should avoid exposure to excessive heat or sunlight
  • Medium fine sand is recommended for plastering

Videos

  • Plastering in easy steps
  • Problems In Plastering

PDF

  • Essential Tips on Plastering
  • Preventive problems in Plastering
  • Tips to avoid cracks in Plaster
X
X

All about the plumbing

All about the plumbing

  • You should plan the plumbing of your home in advance
  • Make sure that you get clarity on how long a particular kind of pipe will last, how durable it is etc., and weigh the pros and cons
  • In case you are unsure about what kind of pipes to opt for, speak to your engineer or plumber and get their inputs
  • You also need to keep your budget in mind while selecting pipes

Things to keep in mind

  • Pipes that will be supplying drinking water should be rustproof
  • The water supply line and the water disposal line shouldn’t be laid out next to each other
  • Check the pipelines for any leakage or flow of water
  • Make sure that the pipes are properly joined
  • Stick to PVC pipes for sewage disposal because it is durable and convenient

Getting your home wired up

Getting your home wired up

  • You need to make proper provisions for earthing in your home and make sure it’s checked regularly
  • It’s extremely important to invest in good quality wires and insulation material
  • Plan out where you want to place the switchboards in your home before you start the construction
  • You should protect your electrical equipment by using a fuse on every power board

Things to keep in mind

  • Only buy electrical materials that carry an ISI mark
  • Avoid taking several connections from one point
  • Ensure that the electrical work is carried out by a registered or licensed electrical contractor
  • Get your wiring and connections checked regularly

Cementing your home

Cementing your home

  • You can choose Ordinary Portland Cement or blended cement like Portland Slag cement for construction
  • Blended cement gives better long term strength, gain and durability
  • Concrete made with blended cement has shown better resistance to various attacks from sulphate, chloride, etc.
  • You can assess the quality of cement by its grade; this tells you what the strength of the cement will be after 28 days of application
  • Grey cement is mostly used for construction whereas white cement is used for interiors

For further assistance, get in touch with us.

Strengthening with steel

Strengthening with steel

  • While concrete has excellent strength, it cannot bear all the load alone. That's why steel bars are cast into concrete to carry loads
  • You have two kinds of steel bars - deformed and mild
  • Mild bars are plain on the surface and have rounded sections
  • Deformed bars have ribs or deformations on their surface
  • Good quality bars should be round and free from surface flows and cracks. They shouldn't have edges that are rough, jagged and imperfect
  • A bar bending schedule will give you details about the size, shape and dimensions of the bars to be cut
  • You can get this schedule from your engineer/architect to help you buy bars in the most economical way

For further assistance, get in touch with us.

Waterproofing your home

Waterproofing your home

  • You need to plan the waterproofing process in advance
  • Proper water proofing enhances the life of the structure, minimizes expenses and eliminates health issues
  • Water tends to rise from the soil to the building. As it passes through the foundation, it rises higher and reaches the walls. To prevent the water from reaching the walls, you lay out a damp-proof course at the plinth level
  • Any wall that has earth on one side and usable space on the other side should be waterproofed

For further assistance, get in touch with us.

Pipe to perfection

Pipe to perfection

  • PVC pipes can handle any residential plumbing - from drainage to water supply and distribution
  • You can identify the uses of a PVC pipe based on its colour and markings
  • They transport high pressured water & dispose waste water more efficiently
  • Being lightweight, it cuts the time wasted during installation by half
  • It provides a variety of connecting methods
  • These pipes are non-toxic, longer lasting, flexible and resistant to corrosion & UV
  • They conserve electrical energy

For further assistance, get in touch with us.

Prep your walls

Prep your walls

Putty

  • Putty is applied on both the interior and exterior surfaces
  • It is used to level the surface of the walls and fill in pores in the walls and ceilings
  • Putty brings out the colour and protects your paint, preventing it from peeling
  • The surface on which you're applying the putty should be wet. This helps provide a strong bond
  • One of the biggest benefits of putty is that it prevents flaking and the growth of fungi and algae
  • It can be applied on concrete/mortar walls

For further assistance, get in touch with us.

X

Birla White Wallcare Putty

  • Birla White Wallcare Putty is a white cement based putty and it is applied as a pre-paint base coat
  • It consists of cementitious material which makes it more durable and adhesive
  • It's water resistant, completely odourless and eco-friendly
  • Once you apply it you don't have to cure it and the final finish you have is smooth and glossy
  • It prevents the growth of fungi and algae and also avoids dampness on the painted surfaces
  • Wallcare Putty works with any kind of paint or distemper and effectively reduces the consumption of paints
X

White Cement

  • White cement gives your walls a neutral tint, making sure the colour looks consistent throughout
  • Its heat reflecting properties make it popular in high-temperature areas
  • It also works as a primer for your walls and can be used to fill crevices and minor hairline cracks
  • Pure white cement mixes easily with inorganic pigments

For further assistance, get in touch with us.

X

Birla White Wallcare cement

  • Birla White cement's high refractive index and opacity imparts a brilliant lustre and smooth finish, even when mixed with pigments
  • It is pure super white cement that mixes easily with inorganic pigments
  • You can use it to produce an array of white cement based products like decorative paints, mosaic tiles and terrazzo flooring
  • It is also used for innovative application like smooth plaster, textured plaster, aggregate plaster, ceilings etc.
  • It also offers a range of innovative products like putty, textured wall finishes, etc.

Tank Up - all about water storage

Tank Up - all about water storage

  • The size of water tank you choose depends on the number of occupants, water supply and pressure
  • You need to plan and identify where you're going to construct or keep your water tank
  • The current trend is to go with plastic storage tanks instead of RCC or masonry tanks

For further assistance, get in touch with us.

Keep the pests away

  • To protect your home from termites and pests you need to undertake pest control before the construction starts
  • Since the plot is open, you'll incur substantially lower expenses and even need minimum labour and termicide
  • As the pest control needs to be done regularly at this phase, the builder and pest control agent will have to work closely with each other

Videos

  • Anti Termite Treatment
X

For further assistance get in touch with us.

​Engineers on wheels

​Engineers on wheels

  • Get technical assistance from trained civil engineers: call the UltraTech Mobile Concrete Expert to your construction site
  • This is a value added service we offer our customers at absolutely no extra cost
  • The van is manned by a trained and qualified civil engineer who gives you advice on the technical aspects of construction like how to examine construction material properly or tips on how to produce good quality concrete

To avail our service, call us on 1800-425-2525

Homebuilding, simplified

Homebuilding, simplified

  • We conduct home builder meets for customers who have just started building or plan to build their home
  • We take them through a presentation where we discuss the various nuances of construction,starting from how to choose the right materials to tips on how to economise construction
  • We also take them through the UltraTech product portfolio and allied products that are available at the UltraTech Building Solutions store
  • At the end of the meet, home builders can interact with us and get their queries addressed

Inquire Now

Interact, learn and build at counter meets

Interact, learn and build at counter meets

  • We invite home builders like you and other contractors to our store during our counter meets
  • We conduct interactive presentations on planning, construction and finishing
  • We also distribute leaflets that help you understand construction better

Inquire Now

Vaastu Compliant

You’ve zeroed in on your plot and you’re all set to start building your home. Ensure that you build your home in line with the ancient science of Vaastu Shashtra.

Positioning your main door

Positioning your main door

  • The location of the main door/entrance changes depending on the direction it's facing
  • To decide the location of the main door, divide the wall facing the proposed direction of the main entrance into 9 equal parts
  • If your house faces east then the door should be in 2nd, 3rd & 4th part from north side. Similarly, for north facing, it shall be in 3rd, 4th & 5th part from west; for south facing, it shall be in the 4th part from east and for west facing, it shall be in 4th & 5th part from south
  • The doors and windows should be in even numbers e.g. 2, 4, 6, 8 etc. and should not end with a zero i.e. like 10. Doors and windows will have to be counted separately

Living room

Living room

  • The living room should be in the north-east for north and east facing houses, in the north-west for houses facing west. For houses facing south, it may be in the south-east
  • As far as possible avoid leaving beams exposed. If unavoidable, avoid sitting close to or under the beam

Master bedroom

Master bedroom

  • The master bedroom should be located in the south-west of the building, which should be occupied by the master of the house (head of the family)
  • In case of a multi-storied building, the head of the family should occupy the south-west corner room on the upper floor

Children's room & guest room

Children's room & guest room

  • The children's bedroom can be in the west, north or east
  • The guest room should be located towards the north-west

Kitchen

Kitchen

  • The kitchen should preferably be located in the south-east direction
  • The second option for the kitchen is the north-west corner
  • The sink used for washing should be in the north-east corner of the kitchen

Dining room

Dining room

  • The dining room can be located in the east, west or south
  • It can be independent or an extension in the kitchen

Pooja room

Pooja room

  • The pooja room should be located in either the north, east or north-east direction of the house

Bathroom

Bathroom

  • Toilets should never be in the north-east corner of the building. Even the south-west corner has to be avoided
  • They should preferably be located in the north-west or alternatively in the south-east of the building or the room
  • It can also be located in the east, north, west and south

Balconies

Balconies

  • Balconies should be located in the north-east corner, the western side of the north-west corner and on the southern side it shall be in south-east corner