The terms concrete and cement are often confused for each other, as many think concrete and cement are the same. It is easy to interchange the meaning, as many do not know that one is essential for the other to exist. So the difference between cement and concrete is that cement is actually an ingredient of concrete. Concrete is a mixture of aggregates (sand, gravel, crushed stone) and a paste, which is made of water and cement. So now we know the difference, let’s break down the details of cement vs. concrete.

Cement transport

We use cement bulker trailer and bulk powder tankers transport cement. The common cement trailer is bulk cement tanker manufacturers.


Cement is a bonding agent. More significantly, cement is the bonding agent that is used in concrete. That’s right, cement is not concrete, it is simply a component of concrete. Concrete is composed of a few different materials. When combined with water, cement turns into a paste which binds all these materials together.


Concrete is a durable building material that uses cement as one of its components. There are four primary ingredients in concrete: cement, stone, sand, and water. The less water that is added to a concrete mixture, the stronger that mixture will be.

The water used in concrete activates the cement, which acts as the binding agent. Aggregates (coarse and fine) in the mix are bound together by the cement. Mixes that use larger aggregates tend to be stronger than those with finer aggregates.

The Difference Between Concrete and Cement

Photo: istockphoto.comWhile the terms are often used interchangeably, cement and concrete are, in fact, not the same thing. Infrequently used on its own, cement is actually an ingredient in concrete. For example, your home’s slab foundation is likely made of concrete, and the concrete was made with cement, plus other ingredients.


Cement isn’t only used in concrete, it is also used in mortar for plastering and grout for masonry. However, cement is a bonding agent and is never used on its own.


Concrete is the most commonly used man-made material on Earth. Almost every construction project uses concrete, thanks to its immense strength and durability. Concrete is used in everything from bridges and buildings to kerbs and drains.


Cement is a collection of different materials extracted from limestone, clay, marl, shale, chalk, sand, bauxite and iron ore. The materials extracted from limestone are what makes up most of cement.


Concrete is composed of sand, gravel (or other fine aggregates and cement. Water is added to the mix when it is time to activate the cement.


The materials used in cement are crushed and heated to around 1500°C. The resulting product is called clinker and is ground into a fine powder and packaged, ready to be activated with water when needed.


Aggregates, water and cement are combined to create a mixture that can be poured into a mould. The combination of water and cement sparks a chemical reaction called ‘hydration’. Shortly after hydration has started, the concrete will begin to harden, so it’s important that concrete is placed in the desired mould before it gets too hard.

Adequate moisture, temperature and time are provided to aid the hydration process and maximise the concrete’s structural properties. This is known as curing, and this is why you can’t step on concrete for a few days after it has been poured. Technically, concrete never stops curing, but after 28 days it will have gotten close enough to its maximum strength that whatever you make will be ready to be put to use reliably.

What is the history of cement and concrete?

The Babylonians and Ancient Egyptians were the first to use concrete when they mixed ingredients like clay, lime, gypsum and water to create concrete or mortar. This mixture was used to build many artifacts still standing today like the Great Pyramid. The Romans created their own strong cement when they mixed lime with volcanic sand, then added water to produce cement. They then combined this with aggregates like pumice to make lime concrete for the creation of harbours and buildings, like the Colosseum. In 1882, Australians produced Portland cement in South Australia. Today, the ready-mix concrete and cement industry is the largest area of the concrete market and is expected to pass $600 billion in revenue by 2025.

How to use cement and concrete today

Concrete is the most used human-made material because of its versatility and reliability. It is durable, cost-effective, and sustainable. We want to use products that will last a lifetime and leave us confident that our structure will hold up against the elements. There is a range of ways cement and concrete are used in our world today. At home, you could create a concrete slab for your desired building project, or maybe a concrete patio? By using a ready-mix concrete mixture, you could DIY your concrete planter box, or to secure some fencing or posts.

Concrete Basics

In its simplest form, concrete is a mixture of paste and aggregates (sand & rock). The paste, composed of cement and water, coats the surface of the fine (sand) and coarse aggregates (rocks) and binds them to a rock-like mass known as concrete.

Within this process lies the key to any shape when newly mixed, strong and durable when hardened. These qualities explain why one material, concrete, can build skyscrapers, bridges, sidewalks, and superhighways, houses and dams.

The key to crack and be uneconomical.

A properly proportioned concrete mixture will possess the desired workability for the fresh concrete and the required durability and strength for the hardened concrete. Typically, a mixture is by volume about 10 to 8 percent.

Portland cement’s chemistry comes tone. Through a chemical reaction of cement and water called hydration, the paste hardens and gains strength.

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