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How Much Does Concrete Wire Mesh Cost?

In home and building construction, concrete wire mesh is an essential material. Luckily, wire mesh is an affordable purchase. The price of concrete reinforcing wire is calculated in pennies on the dollar per square foot. The costs for concrete wire mesh do vary by location and availability. Cities with only one or two hardware stores may end up paying more for construction materials. Ordering from online suppliers can help cut costs by getting wire mesh and other materials at whole seller prices.

Cost of Concrete Wire Mesh:

Rolled Wire Mesh

  • Inexpensive: $.14 per square foot
  • High Quality: $.33 per square foot

Flat Wire Mesh

  • Inexpensive: $.25 per square foot
  • High Quality: $.50 per square foot

Uses of Wire Mesh

Concrete wire mesh is used primarily in construction. Steel mesh helps to reinforce poured concrete's tension strength. Concrete with a high strength can't be compressed, but low tension strength means that concrete is easily pulled apart. This is why it cracks easily and breaks up as water freezes in the cracks during cold weather.

Contractors like to use wire mesh in a number of places to reinforce concrete. The main use of concrete wire mesh is in home and building construction. It is used in patios, foundations, walls and even sidewalks. Plus, this metal grid has other impromptu uses:

  • Temporary Fencing
  • Ground cover or traction
  • Animal barrier
  • Cage walls
  • Support for growing plants

This material is useful in jobs all around the home. Sheets of stainless steel mesh can even be used for interior decorating projects or re-purposed with frames to hang notes, pictures or keys on by the front door.

Types of Concrete Wire Mesh

Concrete wire mesh is a series of steel wires welded together in a grid-like pattern. This creates flexible metal fencing useful for reinforcing concrete. Depending on the purpose, concrete wire mesh is available in a wide range of sizes and grid patterns. The heavier the gauge of wire, the more weight it can support. Wire mesh is measured by the diameter of the wire and the width of each square in the grid. For instance, a popular wire mesh for most home concrete jobs is 1/16-inch diameter and features a 4-inch grid. Wire gauges may also be used to indicate the wire mesh thickness. As with other metal wire, lower numbers indicate thicker diameters while higher numbers indicate thinner diameters.

Flat or Rolled

Concrete wire mesh is sold in rolls or flat sheets. Rolled wire mesh is useful when pouring a lot of concrete as it is sold in lengths up to 150 feet. Rolled mesh is compact and rolls out more quickly when preparing a site. Flat sheets are a good option for smaller work sites and for those who do not want to store unused mesh. These sheets are flat squares or rectangles when purchased, and they stack up for storage. Many contractors prefer flat mesh sheets because they don't have the tendency to curl up like rolled mesh.

Advantages and Disadvantages

There are advantages and disadvantages to using wire mesh in concrete. It does provide support and added tension strength to concrete. On the downside, adding wire mesh is another time-consuming step in the process that could increase the possibility of making mistakes, especially for DIYers. Wire mesh is a definite help in large concrete projects on flat, open spaces, but it is not as necessary in small spaces. Workers should consider leaving it out when attempting very small projects, such as concrete only 2 or 3 feet across.

Concrete Wire Mesh Instructions

Before concrete is poured on a site, the construction team digs out the area removing grass, rocks and roots. The soil should have good drainage. A mechanical tamper is used to tamp down the dirt and flatten the area for a level surface. Wood forms are built around the area to contain the concrete while it sets. The concrete wire mesh is measured and cut to fit the area, and flexible wire is tied around key sections of the wire mesh. The ends of these ties are secured around rebar supports set into the ground around the outside area, or the wire mesh is held in air between these forms with wooden slats. Concrete is poured into the forms until they are filled, and the surface is flattened with a screed board. When the concrete is partially dry, the supports are removed, and the holes are filled with more concrete. 

Last updated on May 23, 2016

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