How to Keep Concrete Formwork from Failing Out

No doubt, concrete formwork is an indispensable part of modern construction. Moreover, this structural component has been with us in Australia and applies to residential and commercial structures. Notably, commercial buildings have discovered the power in using formwork as an integral part of the foundational structure of building projects. On the other hand, if the foundational system of a building is faulty, it compromises the integrity of such tasks. visit to learn about concrete formwork.

It is an utmost disaster to see a building on which a lot has been invested to give way. On the other hand, the most crucial factor in creating a formidable structure that can stand the test of time is to have the right plan, framework, and design. Next is to use the suitable formwork to begin implementing the program to create the desired structure. Moreover, a statistic reported that the structural formwork accounts for 35-40% of the system’s overall cost.

Formworks can also become either a temporary or permanent structure, depending on many factors. Also, the component is highly instrumental to creating the right foundations with the desired strength, shapes, and sizes. Some of the typical applications of concrete formworks include building columns, beams, walls, suspended slabs (and other types of slabs anyway), staircases, among others. In addition, different materials are applicable in constructing formworks, including wood, steel, aluminum, plastic, and some pre-fabricated modules like the Glass Reinforced Plastics (GRP).

Basic Requirements of Formwork

Formwork is measured by the project constraints such as cost, quality, time or speed, and safety of workers on site. Therefore, before we could ascertain that producing formworks is correct, effective and productive, it must meet the requirements below.

  1. Formwork should prevent any leakage through the sufficient tight joints 
  2. It should also support the weight of the concrete while pouring out the mixture and subjecting it to vibration
  3. In addition to the importance of the concrete, the formwork should bear the weight of all the workers. It should also cater for every other person walking on it (if on the floor as the equipment.
  4. It should have a highly secure foundation or base
  5. It should be able to handle diverse safety measures according to the specifications of the equipment in use
  6. A formwork should allow stripping off from the concrete without causing any damage to the latter.
  7. It should be able to prop and brace the structure effectively either through the vertical and horizontal dimension to maintain it
  8. Formwork should be stable for all kinds of weather, especially to Australian, without any distortion of any kind

Common Causes of Formwork Failure

There are several instances of formwork failure due to different reasons. It may occur, especially before or after the concrete has been poured into the mold. Below are some common causes of formwork failure in construction services.

  1. Flawed design

One of the most fundamental causes of formwork failure is a flawed design that is unstable in meeting structural demands. In addition, the formwork may also collapse because of excessive loads on the structure, especially if the amount of load it will carry wasn’t adequately factored into the design. It could also result from a reused formwork that has a lessened capacity that is difficult for engineers to determine. 

  1. Defective parts

It is also possible that the components of formwork are grossly defective in one way or the other. For instance, infected wooden material may not be the best tool for building timber formwork in construction. The reason is that it may quickly transfer this weakness onto the formwork in a way that causes a lesser quality of formwork in the end. Other defective cases may be due to situations and items such as short bolts or screws, poor welding quality, inadequate nails or splicing, and faulty wedges, which can all compromise the quality of the formwork. 

  1. Improper inspections

Before casting the concrete on the formwork, there is a need for the site engineer, project manager, or supervisor to inspect the quality and standard of the formwork. But in a case where there is nothing of such, some of the errors may be overlooked. At the same time, inexperienced or less qualified personnel may result in other formwork failures.

  1. Inadequate foundations 

Formwork foundations can also be placed on a weak foundation. In such a case, the formwork cannot bear the weight of the concrete. Soft soil or untested waters can also lead to a failure of formwork. They may demand that it be difficult or practically impossible to entirely transfer the structure to another site. A weak formwork may also lack the capacity to stay for long with a weak foundation. 

  1. Premature removal

If there is no professional engineer or concrete company, poor formwork or formwork failure can be inevitable. It may result from premature removal of the formwork on the cast concrete when the concrete is not sufficiently cured at the appropriate time, mainly if it is too early. Many times, this premature removal may occur because of the urgency of shortening the work schedule. But in the end, it jeopardizes the quality of formwork and concrete. 


In modern construction that involves the use of formwork to produce high-quality structures, you need a formwork system as recommended by professionals. Meanwhile, BKH Group Company has extensive experience handling construction projects with utmost consideration to serve all needs. Contact BKH Group today to be sure that your investment into construction is in safe hands. Besides, the company understands the diversity of the diverse formwork systems to produce state-of-the-art edifice. As a project manager, your work includes checking the quality and ensuring that the project is a symbol of excellence in every way. 

Lucas Lavarack Written by: