In large work or in major construction works, cement is generally stored at site. The cement must be stored in such a manner so that, it can be easily accessible for proper inspection. The building in which cement is stored should be water tight in order to prevent dampness. The guidelines given below should be observed while storing the cement.
Cement should not be stored for a long period. During rainy season, the storage time period of cement should be as minimal as possible.
Dampness in godowns must be avoided.
Cement should not be piled against the wall. A minimum space of 60 cm all –round should be left between the exterior walls and the tacks. The distance between two consecutive stacks should be the minimum to reduce circulation of air.
Cement should not be piled directly on the floor; instead it should be piled off the floor on wooden planks so as to be clear of the floor by at least 10 to 20 cm.
There should not be more than 15 bags in one pile. This is done to avoid lumping under pressure.
Owing to pressure on the lower layer of bags, the cement may develop what is known as waterhouse pack. This can be removed by rolling the bags when it is taken out of the stack for use. On account of waterhouse pack, the need not be moved and restacked, as there is no advantage in doing so.
If more than 7 bags of cement are to be stored in a pile, then it can be arranged in header and stretcher fashion (as shown in figure below) or alternatively lengthwise and crosswise so as to tie the piles together and to avoid the danger of toppling over.
When cement bags is to be stored for a long period or during rainy season, the stack should be enclosed completely in 700 gauge polythene sheet, tarpaulin or any other suitable water proofing material.
At the time of removing bags from storage, the older cement should be removed first. For this reason, each consignment as it comes should be stacked separately and a placard indicating the date or arrival should be pinned into the pile.
While removing the bags, the first in, first out rule should be applied. It is a good practice to remove bags from two or three tiers rather than all from one tier. If the piles are thus stepped back, then there is less chance of overturning to occur.
If different brands of cement are meant to be used on one work, they should be stacked separately.
The weight of Portland cement for standard data purposes is taken as 1430 kg per cubic meter. One tone of cement shall comprise of 20 bags, each bag weighing 50 kg. Each bag can be assumed to contain 0.035 cubic meter or 35 litres and 1.25 Cft of cement in volume.