Trade Counter Tips

Tarmac’s Dr Bill talks trade counters

We all want satisfied customers, but sometimes things do not turn out that way and customers have can encounter difficulties or problems with the products they have purchased.

So what are the most common mishaps that your customers might experience with cement and cement – based products, How can they be prevented? What advice can you give them when they arrive at your trade counter with a problem?

Well surprisingly (or not as the case may be), simply reading the information on the packaging can will go a long way towards preventing problems. Most packaging (bags or tubs) has information about how best to use the product in the field, often with helpful pictograms. Pointing the customer towards the manufacturer’s product datasheets and safety datasheets can also help them to avoid pitfalls and problems. These are normally to be found on the producer’s website.

A common problem with cement is that it is not batched properly. Correct batching and mixing is the key to producing a successful mortar or concrete , this involves using buckets or batch boxes to measure out quantities of the constituent materials. Batching ‘by the shovel’ runs the risk of producing weak materials that do not perform in the long term.

Finally, and at the risk or repeating myself yet again, cement sets and hardens by reacting with water (‘hydration’) and not, not, not by ‘drying out’. It is vitally important to prevent excessive loss of water from freshly placed mortar, render, screed or concrete. This is called ‘curing’. Get this right and they will develop the desired performance and durability, get it wrong and there is a danger of cracking, crumbling and poor long term durability. Simply covering the work with polythene sheeting for three days or more will do the trick.

Hopefully, passing on these simple tips, to your customers will increase their satisfaction levels and bring them back in the future.

About Guest Blogger - Bill Price

Bill Price is National Commercial Technical Manager at Tarmac’s Cement business

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