The cement should be stored carefully. Otherwise it may absorb moisture from the atmosphere and may become useless for the structural work. Following precautions are to be taken for the storage of cement.
If moisture is kept away from cement, it is found that cement will maintain its quality for an indefinite period. Absorption of 1 to 2% of moisture has no appreciable effect on quality of cement. But if moisture absorption exceeds 5%, the cement becomes totally useless. Hence, when cement is to be stored for a long period, it should be stored in air-tight containers.
2. Period of Storage
The lose cement may be stored indefinitely in air-tight containers. But it is advisable to avoid storing of cement in jute bags for a period longer than 3 months. If it is unavoidable, the cement should be tested to ascertain its properties.
The cement bags are stacked in piles. It is advisable to form a pile of maximum 10 bags. There should be a clear distance of about 300 mm between the piles of cement bag and exterior walls of building. In between individual pile a passage of 900 mm should be provided for easy access. Use tarpaulins or water proof paper at the top and bottom of piles, while storing cement for long period.
4. Removal of Cement
While removing cement bags from pile of sufficient height, then steps should be formed by taking out two or three bags from front piles. Cement should be removed in order of its storage period, i.e. the rule of first in, first out should be followed.
5. Storage Sheds
The walls, roof and floor of storage sheds should be of water proof construction. A minimum number of windows should be provided and they should be kept tightly shut. The floor should be above ground. For determining the size of storage shed, it is found that 20 bags or 10 kN of cement will require about 1m3 of space.