Everything You Need to Know About Tilt-Up Construction

Tilt-Up Construction 101

Tilt-up construction is a highly efficient method of building where large concrete panels are manufactured and then lifted into position using a crane. This technique has gained widespread popularity in commercial and industrial development projects due to its ability to expedite construction timelines. The design flexibility of tilt-up concrete walls allows for fewer joints, resulting in increased durability and a denser structure compared to brick. Overall, this makes tilt-up construction one of the most cost-effective options available. Now that you have the foundation of tilt-up construction down, it’s time to build on that. In this blog, we’ll go over everything you need to know about tilt-up construction.

The Tilt-Up Construction Process

The initial stage of tilt-up construction involves preparing the slab through either pouring or precasting.

The process of tilt-up concrete panels begins by laying out the floor slab and constructing the formwork, which aids in curing and strengthening the concrete. This method is particularly effective for thicker slabs where there is a greater risk of cracks on the concrete surfaces.

Next, application of release agents occurs, followed by the placement of reinforcements. Additionally, structural steel is attached, along with lifting and bracing hardware.

After preparing the forms, concrete is poured and then undergoes finishing and curing processes. However, if the weather is unfavorable, the pouring of concrete may be postponed. It is important to note that curing concrete during bad weather conditions can heighten the likelihood of surface cracks.

The process of curing concrete typically lasts for a period of one week to ten days, allowing it to dry and become stronger. After the concrete has cured, it is then cut to the desired size. The formwork can either be taken off or reused for another part of the project. During this stage, there are potential issues such as formwork blowing out, resulting in uneven tilt up wall panels.

To ensure that things go smoothly, a skilled concrete cutter is needed to trim the edges and ensure they align with the other wall panels.

The panels are hoisted or angled into position using a mobile crane after they are manufactured. To ensure stability, temporary braces are installed before the panels are released, and they remain in place until the roof is attached.

The final stage of the process entails connecting the panels, which involves linking the floor slab to the walls using concrete. Additionally, all joints are caulked, any blemishes are repaired as necessary, the roof is connected, and the bracing is removed.

Where is Tilt-Up Construction Used?

Tilt-up construction is an ideal fit for any commercial or industrial building, such as retail stores, warehouses, manufacturing plants, and office buildings. This method of construction is also advantageous when constructing large-scale projects including schools, hospitals, and other community buildings.

Advantages of Tilt-Up Construction

A significant advantage of tilt-up wall panels is their load-bearing capability. Unlike precast concrete projects, tilt-up wall panels eliminate the need for perimeter columns or roof beams. This allows for increased flexibility in exterior openings and design modifications, such as installing windows to enhance natural lighting or creating doorways for industrial roller doors. Other benefits of tilt-up construction include design flexibility, a more uniform finished product, speed, lower cost of construction, and reduced energy costs.

Tilt-up construction is an extremely cost-effective building method, and it can significantly reduce project timelines. Its advantages – design flexibility, uniformity, speed, affordability, and energy efficiency – make it the perfect choice for commercial and industrial development projects. Additionally, its load-bearing capability eliminates the need for additional framing and support. All of these benefits make tilt-up construction a popular choice for many developers.

We hope this blog has given you a better understanding of tilt-up construction and its associated advantages. If you have any questions or would like further information about tilt-up construction or you’d like to learn more about any of the high-quality services we offer to the Sacramento area, please reach out and contact the team at Headwaters Building Group today to discuss your project requirements. Our skilled professionals have all the answers to any of your questions and are dedicated to helping you get your job done as efficiently as possible.

Environmental Benefits of Tilt Up Construction

The environmental benefits of tilt up construction

The Many Environmental Benefits of Tilt-Up Construction

The environmental benefits of tilt up constructionFrom energy-saving light bulbs to hybrid automobiles and LEED-certified buildings, it is obvious that “green” will be a way of life in American culture. Additionally, it will impact the building industry for the foreseeable future. Today on the blog, our tilt-up construction company shares why it is an environmentally friendly building from the ground up. So, what exactly are the environmental benefits of tilt-up construction?

The Benefits of Tilt-Up Construction

To start, our commercial builders explain that before sustainable design became a motivator, high-quality concrete tilt-up projects were built. They had the goal of producing buildings that minimized the dynamic variations in temperature around the building. Tilt-up structures were previously known for their improved thermal efficiency. This is even before sustainability became a term in the industry.

Interestingly, our general contractor Sacramento explains there is no way to obtain LEED certification using solely the credits provided by tilt-up concrete.

LEED Certification

Although tilt-up construction cannot achieve LEED certification on its own, it is a building shell technology that gets simple credits. It works at delivering valuable points toward certification or propelling your project to the next level of sustainability. Why not go with the approach that produces the most “green”?

Site-casting concrete pieces provide several benefits for overall sustainability. To begin, all of the major components for a tilt-up construction may be obtained locally. This aspect, along with on-site tilt-up panels, decreases the amount of gasoline required to transport goods to the project site.

Building envelope efficiency is extremely essential in lowering energy consumption and costs in sustainable projects. When compared to several competing technologies, tilt-up structures feature a tighter structure and less air intrusion. The thermal mass effect—inherent concrete’s capacity to absorb and store energy—can also be coupled with optimal insulation solutions to provide maximum thermal performance.

In the Long Run, Tilt-Up

A building must be maintained throughout time in order to be genuinely sustainable. Tilt-up structures have achieved life spans exceeding 100 years. These buildings not only withstand the test of time, but they also have a very low maintenance profile, lowering expenses and product usage. The environmental consequences of decreasing maintenance expenses are sometimes underestimated. However, they have a major influence on a building’s overall sustainability.

Tilt-up wall panels’ innate resilience allows normal wear and tear. Additionally, it also provides the option of recycling panels in the case of a building expansion or restoration. Repurposing wall panels as site fill or pavement sub-foundation material minimizes total construction waste.

Collaboration for a Better Tomorrow

Manufacturers of construction products are also trying to develop products that improve the tilt-up structure while also contributing to sustainability.  Tilt-up construction uses 80% less raw material and natural gas to manufacture and distribute than traditional full-size brick. Because of the production method and decreased weight, less clay and shale are required. Thus, less energy is utilized to create and distribute the product.

As the “green” movement pervades more parts of life, we examine the influence of our work and the legacy we will leave. The structures we design have a long-term impact on both the environment and the people who inhabit them.

Contact Headwaters for Tilt-Up Construction

Follow us on Facebook today to see more of our tilt-up construction projects! We would assist you in your tilt-up construction project. Contact Headwaters Construction Inc. today for commercial building services in Sacramento.

The Fundamentals of Tilt-Up Construction

The Fundamentals of Tilt Up Construction

The Fundamentals of Tilt-Up Construction

The Fundamentals of Tilt Up ConstructionTilt-Up construction blends reinforced concrete’s resilience and toughness. At Headwaters Construction, tilt-up construction is one of our specialties. This method is becoming increasingly popular for a number of reasons, which may explain why more than 650 million square feet of Tilt-Up buildings are constructed each year. Today on the blog, Headwaters Construction Inc. shares the fundamentals of tilt-up construction. 

How Tilt-Up Building Works

Concrete tilt-up construction consists of a collection of concrete panels tilted up into place to form the outer wall of a house. These panels are built on the job site with timber shapes, rebar, and concrete. To fit the final designs, the shapes are formed and the rebar is removed. Following that, the concrete is poured onto the shapes and completed.

When the walls are complete, they are angled vertically and placed on foundational footings, where they frame the building’s exterior framework. Each panel is braced temporarily before the roof connects the frame. The outward-facing portion of these panels, as mentioned below, is a blank slate to which almost any exterior siding, cladding, or veneer may be added. The inside, too, maybe insulated or otherwise coated to suit the unique requirements of a facility.

The Advantages of Tilt-Up Building

Tilt-Up construction has several advantages that combine to minimize total project costs, shorten construction periods, and maximize value to owners. Our Sacramento general contractors detail these below:


Tilt-Up is amazingly easy. The concrete panels cure in a matter of days, and tilting them into position is much easier and less labor-intensive than other processes. Furthermore, since work sites are enclosed earlier on Tilt-Up projects, later-stage construction phases such as roof work and infrastructure integration will begin sooner.

Materials and Labor Prices

Tilt-Up requires considerably less skilled labor than other approaches. The concrete walls are poured and finished by laborers, and the walls are lifted into operation by a crane operator. A building’s walls can be constructed in a matter of days by a small number of staff.

When it comes to building supplies, ready-mix concrete and rebar are much cheaper and easy to find from local manufacturers. Steel beams and complicated modules do not have to be ordered months in advance. Furthermore, some states have business growth benefits such as waiving sales taxes on goods imported in-state. Thus, this will help to reduce prices much further. Lumber, rebar, and ready-mix concrete can be used nearly everywhere.

Power conservation

Reinforced concrete is an exceptional insulator on its own, and you can improve thermal properties by adding additional insulating layers to walls for optimum energy savings.

Although customizing the insulating properties of concrete incurs additional costs upfront, lifecycle cost estimates reveal that Tilt-Up concrete panels help reduce energy costs over time.

On a more fundamental basis, Tilt-Up construction saves resources further upstream. This is due to the fact that concrete manufacturing uses much fewer resources than approaches that focus on steel production.

The flexibility of concept and cost savings

We use algorithms to create designs that are tailored to the precise specifications, removing expensive unknowns from the building process.

Changes in cost and timetable are recorded in real-time as owners choose options. This allows them to make the right choice based on the best combination between the purpose and shape of a structure.

How We Use Tilt-Up

Anything we produce is the product theory, as well as modern technology and decades of experience, to eliminate crucial days and hours from the construction process. That’s how we’ve been so good at finishing projects on schedule and under budget.

Do you want to see if Tilt-Up is the best option for the next building project? Contact Headwaters Construction today. Our experienced tilt-up construction team would love to discuss your next project with you. Check out our Google reviews here.

The Pros and Cons of Tilt-Up Construction

the pros and cons of tilt construction

the pros and cons of tilt construction

Pros and Cons of Tilt-Up Construction 2021

Tilt-up construction has become more popular since the 1920s when it was invented as a building method. This article, written by our Sacramento commercial contractors, discusses the pros and cons of tilt-up construction method. Headwaters Construction Inc. hopes this helps you decide whether or not tilt-up construction is something you’d like to use in your next commercial construction project.


Tilt-Up Construction – Speed 

It takes just a few days for the poured concrete panels to cure and be ready for tilting or lifting into place. The speed of this construction method also switches into higher gear when you consider how quickly other skilled contractors, such as plumbers and electricians, can get to work at the site. The swift build-up of the walls means that those other professionals can begin their work sooner. So, the entire project will be completed after a shorter time than other construction methods.

Tilt-Up Construction – Cost Savings

The Sacramento tilt-up construction experts explain that it isn’t surprising that tilt-up construction is the method of choice for people who want to build big-box stores, industrial complexes, or even low-cost housing.

The method is cost-effective in many ways. For example, less labor is required since just a few people can pour the concrete panels and a crane or any other piece of lifting equipment, then tilts those cured panels into place. As any Sacramento Headwaters building and contracting expert will tell you, any reduction in labor results in significant cost savings for a builder.

Energy Efficiency

Reinforced concrete is a good insulator, and tilt-up construction allows buildings to enjoy higher levels of this energy efficiency since there are few joints or seams in the entire building.

You can also ask the Sacramento tilt-up construction company in charge of your project to add more insulation layers to the tilt-up panels. While this may raise your project cost, you will enjoy better energy-efficiency during the lifetime of the building. Our friends at Specialized AV, a distributed audio service in Sacramento adds that the additional savings can eventually cover the cost of adding that insulation.

Design Flexibility

In the past, tilt-up construction wasn’t a popular method for constructing smaller structures and buildings where esthetics were a major requirement. However, the maturation of design technology, such as 5-D Macro BIM, has increased the design possibilities for Sacramento tilt-up construction companies to the extent that round surfaces and curved walls are all possible using this building method.

The fact that each tilt-up building is customized to a particular client’s needs means that the fluidity of concrete can be taken advantage of in nearly countless ways.

Sound and Fire Resistance

Tilt-up construction also produces buildings with a high level of sound attenuation and fire resistance. People working in a tilt-up structure would not be affected by the noise from the building’s environs, just as a noisy manufacturing plant will not cause as much of a disturbance as would be possible if other methods of construction had been used.

Additionally, the tilt-up construction experts at Head Waters Construction, Inc. in Sacramento explain that the concrete used during tilt-up construction is formulated to meet the most stringent fire resistance standards. Building occupants can therefore work while safe knowing that they will be safeguarded until they can escape during a fire emergency.

Easy Access to Contracting Materials

It is also easy for Headwaters building and contracting professionals to access any required building materials, such as rebar and cement, from the local suppliers near the construction site. This is unlike what would happen if the contractor needed to order more complex materials from a far-away supplier.


Upfront Coordination is Crucial

Tilt-up construction requires a high degree of upfront coordination between different professionals, such as electricians, HVAC technicians, and structural engineers. Any change that has to be made once the tilt-up walls are cured and lifted into position will be very costly and disruptive.

Cost Efficiencies Kick in Subject to Project Size

Tilt-up construction produces increasing cost savings as the size of a building becomes bigger. However, the reverse is also true as the square footage reduces, so you might be well advised to discuss with an expert from Head Waters Construction, Inc., about the cost implications of using this method if you intend to construct a building on the smaller side.

Hire a Professional Construction Company

As you can see, there are many pros to tilt-up construction. If you think that you could enjoy the numerous benefits of this commercial building method, contact Head Waters Construction, Inc. in Sacramento and let the experts chart a way forward to your dream building using tilt-up construction!

Editor’s note: This post was originally published in August 2019 and has been completely revamped and updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.

What’s the Difference Between Ground-Up Construction and Renovation?

ground up construction and renovation

What's the difference between ground-up construction and renovation?

Ground-up Construction vs. Renovation: 2021

In most cases, when you compare construction and renovation, you are motivated by two main factors. One is that your company has outgrown its current premises, or you would like to have an additional location for your business. In this article, you will learn how ground-up construction differs from commercial renovation and understand the factors you need to consider to choose the most appropriate option for your business needs. 

Ground-up Construction & Renovation Defined 

Ground-up construction refers to the process of putting up a new structure on a lot where no building exists. You are building from scratch. New foundations, new walls, new footings. On the other hand, a renovation refers to the modification of an existing structure. The primary structural elements, such as the foundation, will remain. Still, your local renovation company in Sacramento may tear down an interior wall to change the building’s floor plan.

However, the professionals at Head Waters Construction, Inc. warn you that the definition of what constitutes renovation or new construction may vary from one municipality or city to another. So, it is best to check the local laws and establish which categorization applies to the project you wish to undertake.


– Design Flexibility 

Headwaters building and contracting professionals recommend that you consider the degree of design flexibility that you desire during your project before you opt for either ground-up construction or renovation.

In most cases, ground-up construction offers you nearly unlimited design flexibility. A blank slate or canvas allows you to make the site into anything you want. However, keep in mind that renovation puts some constraints upon your design possibilities since you must work within the existing building’s structural elements. If these constraints will be a concern, then opting for ground-up construction would be the ideal choice.

– Location

Another crucial factor that you need to think about has to do with your business’s ideal location. It may be hard for you to find a vacant lot in a desirable area where you can build the ideal premises for your business. In such a case, finding an existing building and renovating it would be a more feasible option.

– Regulatory Compliance 

Building codes keep evolving, and all new structures or renovated ones have to be compliant with the latest regulations. Herein lies another consideration that Sacramento construction companies advise business owners to think about. For example, deciding to renovate a section of your current building may trigger a regulatory requirement for you to make the entire building ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act)-compliant. These regulatory issues can make an otherwise straight-forward renovation process complex and costly. Building premises from the ground up becomes a more attractive proposition since you may predict all the project factors.

– Getting Construction Building Permits

The process of securing building permits for a renovation project is generally less complicated and shorter when compared to navigating the permitting process in a new structure from the ground-up. Some renovation projects may not even require a permit. However, likely, constructing a building from scratch will never have the permit requirements waived.

–  Building

How soon do you want to use the new or renovated building? The duration needed to complete a renovation project is usually a small fraction of the time required to construct a building from scratch. Head Waters Construction, Inc., aconstruction company in Sacramento, recommends that people who are pressed for time opt for renovation. Similarly, those who don’t have much time should build the desired structure from the ground up.

–  Concerns Over Hazardous Materials

You may have hazardous materials to contend with if you would like to renovate an older building. For example, asbestos may be found within the walls as you kick-start a project to add an extension to your business premises. According to Headwaters development experts, dealing with those hazardous materials can inflate renovation budgets and throw project timelines out of whack.

However, even vacant lots can have hazardous materials. For example, a lot located on land that was reclaimed from agricultural land, chemical industry, or even a retired garbage dumping site may have toxic waste. Therefore, it is advisable for you to commission a site or building analysis to identify any potential issues of hazardous materials before you decide whether to renovate that existing building or build on a vacant site.

– Construction Cost

Your budget is a significant determinant of whether renovation or ground-up construction is a viable option. Our friends at Tureks Plumbing Services, a home remodeling contractor in Appleton, WI, add that most renovation projects require smaller budgets than ground-up construction does. Furthermore, renovation projects can be phased so that the cost implication is spread out over a longer time. If your budget is limited, your best bet is to renovate an existing building. However, if no resource limitation exists, ground-up construction may be a better option.

As you can see, there is no clear cut answer as to whether renovation or ground-up construction is the best option for you. What can only determine the correct answer once you discuss your building needs in Sacramento with an expert from Head Waters Construction, Inc. Our professionals will recommend the most cost-effective option for your company, so give us a call today!

Editor’s note: This post was originally published in August 2019 and has been completely revamped and updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness. 

Tilt-Up Construction Myths

Tilt-Up Construction Myths

Myths about Tilt-Up Construction

Tilt-Up Construction MythsMany people dream of constructing their own commercial property. Typically, their reasons vary from the desire to have customized business premises to investors who wish to earn an income from these commercial properties. However, there are lots of myths abound regarding the process of constructing commercial properties. Unfortunately, these myths can even hold back people from bringing their dream of building a commercial property to reality. Today on the blog, our commercial building renovation contractors address some of the tilt-up construction myths in Sacramento.

Myth #1: Tilt-Up Construction Has Hidden Costs

Lots of people are afraid that they will fall victim to a less than a trustworthy commercial construction company. Sometimes, these companies keep inflating project costs to the detriment of the building owner.

While some bad apples may exist in the tilt-up construction industry, reputable Sacramento construction companies can be found to deliver a project that is completed to your specifications while adhering to the agreed budget.

The key to identifying such a commercial builder requires putting in the effort to research the references that they provide. That way, you will narrow down your options to those concrete tilt-up contractors who have a reputation for doing everything in their power to keep within the agreed budget. As follows, this contractor will put everything in writing and will follow the budget set.

Myth #2: Variations to Project Scope or Cost Signify Fraud

As commercial construction takes place, it may often be necessary to adjust the scope of the work or the cost of different items. At Headwaters Construction Inc., we heard a number of people express fear about this. This is due to the misconception that those changes are motivated by the commercial builder’s desire to rip off a client. 

However, this isn’t necessarily the case. For example, a client may request some modifications to the floor plan of the commercial building. In turn, those changes will increase the cost of the project. Changes in the choice of materials used can also have cost implications.

To avoid any misunderstandings, reputable tilt-up construction companies in Sacramento always explain the changes to the client. They work to clearly spell out how those changes will affect the budget that had been agreed upon earlier on. 

We asked our friends over at Tureks Plumbing what they recommend to their customers to avoid cost signify fraud. The Kitchen Remodel Company Appleton, WI recommends documenting all project changes. Then, both parties (the client and the concrete tilt-up contractor) should sign the amended project documents before construction work can resume.

If you aren’t sure that certain changes are necessary, get a second opinion! This will ensure that you are confident that you will not lose money by agreeing to the proposed adjustments.

Myth #3: It Isn’t Easy to Find Affordable and Reputable Tilt-Up Builders

Another myth we often hear is the thinking that finding an affordable, reputable tilt-up contractor in Sacramento is impossible. While it is true that not all commercial builders are created equal, it is possible for you to find a Sacramento construction company that is affordable and delivers outstanding quality work.

The best way to find a tilt-up construction design company that is affordable and has a great reputation is simple. We recommend taking your time and vetting the available contractors so that you select one who checks all boxes.

When you are meticulous in your search, you will be pleasantly surprised! It is clear that finding an affordable commercial builder isn’t as hard as you had initially thought.

Myth #4: Constructing Commercial Properties is Costly and Time-Consuming

The fact that there are lots of techniques or methods to build a commercial property. It is incorrect to make a sweeping statement that building commercial properties is only costly and time-consuming.

For example, concrete tilt-up construction has gained traction in the construction industry. This is due to the speed at which ground-up construction can be completed cost-effectively. Concrete is a material that has stood the test of time as a material of choice when you need to build a structure that is strong and long-lasting. Panels are fabricated on-site from this tried and true material, and they are hoisted into position rapidly.

When you opt for tilt-up construction, you get a lot more than time savings. Project costs go down (less labor is needed, panels are made onsite so there is no need to incur transport costs, and so on), and the exterior shell is up faster, thereby enabling other tradespeople (electricians and plumbers, for example) to have the sheltered environment that they need to complete their work.

Tilt-Up Construction in Sacramento

As you can see, it is often not easy to distinguish between fact and myth in the construction industry. It is advisable to get in touch with a commercial builder in Sacramento. This is especially true when it comes to anything you may be uncertain about when planning commercial construction. Our ground-up project teams at Headwaters Construction Inc. is here to address all your queries! We would love to help you make your dream of owning commercial real estate a reality. Contact Headwaters Construction Inc. today!

Tilt-up Construction Project Considerations

tilt-up construction project considerations

tilt-up construction project considerationsConsiderations When Building a Tilt-up Project

Tilt-up construction projects come with many important considerations to keep in mind. This form of construction involves using already casted walls and joining them to come up with a complete building. These buildings are considerably easier to build and are a great attraction for many people looking to set up commercial buildings. However, as much as tilt-up projects are great for construction, your commercial builder will have to make a number of considerations before and during the construction process. This way they can provide the kind of results you want. Our Sacramento tilt-up contractors share the many different tilt-up construction project considerations.

Type of Project 

Tilt-up construction is cheap, easy to build, and great for the environment. However, this type of construction will not fit all kinds of buildings. Some will require other forms of constructions for structural reasons.

Sometimes, your Sacramento commercial builders will also look at the facilities you want to include in the project. Some facilities will dramatically increase the cost of construction such that a tilt-up project won’t make sense.  Understanding the type of project allows commercial construction companies the information they need to decide whether a tilt-up construction is ideal. 

The Client’s Needs 

The last thing a contractor wants is to build something the client does not want or need. Such a mistake can bring a lot of costly repercussions that the client might not have planned to cover. Therefore, it is important for construction companies to fully understand the client’s needs. 

During the consultation with the client, the contractor will keep in mind the client’s expectations in terms of aesthetics, applicable finishes, and budget. In the event the client’s needs cannot be accommodated by a tilt-up construction, the construction company will have the time to let them know. 

Structural Considerations 

The structural well-being of a building is one of the most important aspect in construction. McQuillan Bros, HVAC company in St. Paul, Mn advises that you will need a structural engineer on board. He or she is supposed to offer crucial advice after evaluating different aspects of the construction such as soils, to determine the floor and foundation design, carry out wall engineering, and other load-related analysis. 

It helps to have a structural engineer on site before construction starts because they can easily tell whether the project requires a tilt-up construction or not. They are also able to point out what aspects of the construction might end up taking more time and resources. 

Schedule/Key Design Considerations 

While Tilt-up projects are is known for its fast construction time, it is important to consider that a lot of time will be spent away from the construction site. For example, one tilt-up construction project consideration one should make is that once construction commences, your contractor will take more time reinforcing steel and making detailed panel shop drawings, getting them approved and fabricated before they can be delivered to the site. The length of this period will depend on the size and specifications of the building you want. 

This will lead to a lot of time wastage if scheduling is not done properly. Therefore, it helps to work with a contractor from the beginning. Have them work with a structural engineer from the start so he or she can work on the front end of the tilt-up project. 

Site Layout and Topography 

Tilt-up projects involve placing already made wall panels on a floor slab or casting beds. Each of these will require a different topography for the success of the project. For example, casting beds require plenty of flat space directly around the building. Your contractors will also need enough space for their cranes. When using a floor slab, cranes will be needed. Understanding the site layout and topography helps you decide what to use for the structural integrity of the building. 

There are many things to consider when coming up with a tilt-up project. Employing the help of a trained professional is a great place to start. Headwaters Construction is dedicated to making your tilt-up project stand out through professional service all year round.

History of Tilt-Up Construction

Tilt Up Construction

tilt-up-construction-sacramentoA History of Tilt-Up Construction

Tilt-up concrete construction is a common method of construction used today. It has given rise to many of the large buildings you see around you. However, this hasn’t always been the case. Keep reading and discover the interesting history of this construction method from its early beginnings to what it is today.

What is Tilt-Up Construction?

Tilt-up concrete construction refers to a method of building in which concrete components, such as walls and floor slabs, are cast on site before being lifted into position by cranes.

Headwaters Construction Inc., the best commercial builder in Sacramento, explains that tilt-up differs from prefab construction because, in prefab construction, concrete components are fabricated offsite in a factory. They are then transported to the construction site. In contrast, the concrete components used in tilt-up construction are cast at the construction site itself. This is before being lifted to their final positions on a building.

The very first types of buildings to be constructed using tilt-up concrete construction were warehouses and other “big box” structures due to the economies of scale that could be enjoyed on those projects.

Today, tilt-up construction can be used to put up all sorts of buildings, such as hotels, hospitals, and even homes.

The Beginning

Commercial construction using tilt-up construction as we know it was invented in 1905. Three years later, Robert Akins got a patent for this construction method.

Akins created a buzz in the construction industry when he poured wall slabs onsite and lifted them upright using tilt tables. The building he constructed was named Schindler House located in West Hollywood, California. 

Thomas Edison, the famous inventor, was so enthralled by this novel way to construct buildings that he declared that tilt-up concrete construction was the method of construction of the future. Edison constructed an entire village in Union, New Jersey, using tilt-up construction in 1908. This village is still standing to this day!

Technological advancements, such as the availability of larger cranes and concrete mixing trucks, have caused tilt-up construction to explode in popularity. The construction boom that started at the end of World War 2, together with the labor shortages caused by that devastating war, further cemented tilt-up construction’s place in society.

Recent Developments

Commercial construction using tilt-up concrete construction used to result in “boxy” exterior walls whose corners were 90-degree angles and the walls were flat.

Today, builders are no longer limited to those appearances and shapes. Instead, Headwaters Construction Inc., the best commercial builder in Sacramento, and other commercial construction companies specializing in this style of construction can deliver buildings whose window openings are elliptical or circular.

The tops of the tilt-up walls can now be curved. Several finishing options, such as exposed aggregate, stone, and brick, can all be applied to tilt-up walls. Even the color of the walls can also be customized to suit the needs of the project owner.

This variation in the structure and aesthetics of tilt-up construction shows why the method has gone beyond warehouses to buildings and homes.

Why Should You Even Consider Tilt-Up Construction?

The construction industry is very conservative, so you may be wondering why this new method of construction has caught on. Many project owners are specifically requesting for tilt-up concrete construction.

Tilt-up construction is good for building owners because the method cuts the construction duration by approximately two months. Gilmore Heating Air & Plumbing, Sacramento HVAC company explains that the method is cost-effective, efficient, safe, and quiet. It also offers architectural freedom since the onsite casting of concrete elements removes limitations due to transportation challenges and more.

These are the reason why you need to give serious consideration to tilt-up construction for your next project. If you would like to learn more about how this construction method can work for you, contact Sacramento tilt-up contractors. We can discuss with you the viability of this time-tested method for your project.

The Basics of Tilt-Up Construction

basics of tilt-up construction - Headwaters Construction

basics of tilt-up construction - Headwaters ConstructionThe Basics of Tilt-Up Construction with Headwaters Construction

When you combine the strength of reinforced concrete with the efficiency and precision of design-build methods, you get cutting-edge tilt-up construction. This method is fast and economical. That may be why upwards of 650 million square feet of buildings are constructed using the tilt-up method. In this article, you’ll learn the basics that will help you to understand tilt-up construction.

How the Method Works

Tilt-up construction is characterized by a series of concrete panels that are tilted into position, forming the exterior walls of a building. The panels are made onsite using wooden or other forms, concrete, and rebar.

Headwaters Construction Inc., the best tilt construction company in Sacramento, explains that the final designs of the building help the contractor to shape the wooden forms and cut rebar into the appropriate sizes and shapes before concrete is poured into the forms. 

In a few days, the cured concrete forms are hoisted into place on foundation footings. The panels now form the exterior walls of the building. The tilt-up contractor temporarily braces each of these panels. The bracing is removed once the roof holds the entire structure together.

The two sides of the panels (the side facing inside the building and the side facing outside) can be modified or finished in any way you’d like.

For example, veneer can be placed on the exterior face of the tilt-up panels to give the building a unique character.

A History of Tilt-Up Construction

Contrary to what some people may think, tilt-up construction has been around for a long time. For example, commercial construction companies point out that the old-style barns were raised using the tilt-up method.

The tilt-up construction professionals point out that the big break for this method came at the end of World War 2 when there was such a huge labor shortage. So, construction methods, such as tilt-up, became very popular. From that time, tilt-up construction has grown immensely across the U.S.

How Tilt-Up Construction Compares to Other Options

Wood frame construction is labor-intensive, and this attribute makes tilt-up construction a viable alternative due to its limited labor requirement.

Steel beam construction techniques can be quite pricey. This makes them better suited to high rise projects where this cost can be justified. Tilt-up construction is a better alternative if the project isn’t a high rise construction project.

Constructing using prefabricated steel frames can also be economical. However, the design limitations of this technique make tilt-up construction the better option in some situations, according to leading general contracting companies in Sacramento.

Tilt-up construction may also be a viable method in situations where masonry construction is an option.

All in all, there is no single sector for which tilt-up construction is best suited. The method can be used for a diverse range of projects from large scale distribution centers to even churches! 

Key Assumptions Regarding Tilt-Up Construction

You may be interested in knowing how the cost of a square foot of a tilt-up building compares to the other options. However, our friends at Tureks Plumbing, a home-remodeling company in Appleton,  say that these comparisons wouldn’t be very helpful since every construction project has its own peculiarities that often affect the cost of that project. Instead, the commercial builders recommend that you keep the following assumptions in mind when considering tilt-up construction for your project:

First, you are likely to enjoy higher levels of cost-effectiveness the larger your project is. This is because economies of scale kick in for tilt-up construction as a building gets larger.

Secondly, tilt-up construction expedites projects because once the exterior walls are up, other trades, such as plumbing and electrical work.

Thirdly, tilt-up contractors also have a higher degree of control over a project. It is easy for them to access locally available materials and supplies. Compare this to other techniques that involve lengthy lead times and higher costs.

Headwaters Tilt-Up Construction

In short, tilt-up construction brings speed, cost savings, energy efficiency, and other benefits to construction projects. If you would like to know whether tilt-up construction can be an option for your upcoming project, contact Headwaters Construction Inc. and we will work with you to select the most appropriate method to use when constructing your new commercial building.

Innovation Strategy

Innovation Strategy

Innovation StrategyWhat Is an Innovation Strategy?

Every company needs to innovate if they want to remain relevant in a quickly changing landscape. While many companies claim to have innovation at their core, their results show that this is not always the case. Despite the massive amounts of resources allocated to innovation, failure is the norm for many of them. For such companies, they need to focus on innovation strategy. Execution of innovation isn’t enough if there is no strategy towards a company’s selected long-term goals.

A good strategy makes every department or unit in the company committed to a clearly defined set of policies. This will include desired behaviors that ultimately lead to the realization of a specified business goal. Our experienced Sacramento Tilt-Up Construction professionals explain that your innovation strategy should address the following questions:

How Will We Create Value for Existing and Potential Customers?

An innovative product or solution can provide value in many ways. These include increased durability, compactness, lower cost, ease of use, better reliability, and so many other ways. For example, Gilmore Heating, Air and Plumbing, a residential ac company in Placerville, is constantly staying ahead of the curve by providing customers with better devices and services.  Your innovation strategy will be lacking if it doesn’t specify your plan to offer value to potential customers. For example, different teams may try to find ways of offering value in different ways, and this lack of coherence will ultimately result in the failure of the innovation strategy.

How Will We Corner a Segment of the Value Created?

The reality of the world today is that not many companies or people are willing to invest in coming up with novel innovations, so they just pounce on any new innovation with their imitations.

Trying to keep such pirates at bay with patents and intellectual property rights is useless. You are better off deciding how you plan to capture a segment of the market that is attracted to your innovation. For example, Apple secured a corner of the market it created by bringing the iPad. This is called a proprietary operating system. That system ensures that someone who owns an iPad will more easily buy an iPhone since they use the same platform.

What Type of Innovation Strategy Should We Focus On?

Innovation can take many forms. A company may be kidding themselves if they think that they will pursue all types of innovation with the same degree of commitment. For example, some companies may be built on business model innovation. Uber and Netflix are a good example of such companies. Other companies may focus on routine innovation. This is a version in which you make improvements to an existing product. Microsoft has excelled at this with its different Windows OS versions. Disruptive innovation is yet another form of innovation, where companies seek to upset the status quo. For example, Google came up with the free Android OS as a disruption to the operating systems of Apple and Windows that one has to pay for.

In short, the innovation strategy of your company needs to outline how much attention will be given to the different kinds of innovation so that all efforts gel across the company.

The Power of Prevailing Winds in Innovation Strategy

Implementing an innovation strategy in a company is no walk in the park. This is because the operational needs of the company will keep pulling personnel and other resources towards fixing immediate needs. For example, your company may be interested in pursuing innovation, but the finance department may push the R&D department to come up with less costly components. They could want this to remain profitable, while the marketing team demands better packaging to reach new customers with existing products.

Those pressures are illustrations of how prevailing winds can throw your plans of innovation off track. Without clear leadership to stay on course, the innovation strategy can just remain on paper.

The Role of Management

Top management has many roles to play if the innovation strategy consists of two things: to see the light of day and bear the desired fruit in the long term.

First, top management is responsible for formulating the innovation strategy of the company. Commercial Renovation Contractors explain that this is important because only they can set the priorities of the company. This innovation strategy should then be articulated to all in the company so there is clarity on what matters most.

Secondly, top management is responsible for ensuring that the way resources are allocated supports the innovation strategy. What happens on the ground in terms of resource allocation determines what the strategy of your company is.

Third and most importantly, top management has the duty to keep refining the strategy. This is to ensure that it remains in tune with the changing times. For example, when a truly disruptive innovation is brought to market, it may be wiser to switch to routine innovation.  This occurs to get as much value from that one innovation as is possible. Modest resources can then be used to search for the next big innovation.

As you can see, coming up with and eventually implementing an innovation strategy isn’t something you can do overnight. A lot of careful thought has to go into the process. However, the results are worth every bead of sweat! The construction industry did it with tilt-up construction and other innovations. You too can position yourself to be innovative. 

For any innovative construction needs, please contact us at Headwater Construction Inc. We’d love to assist you!