What is Concrete Testing?

When using fresh concrete, understanding the mechanical and physical properties helps to determine its workability, stability, and hardened state strength, along with testing for durability and long-term properties.

Alongside concrete testing, CTS also carry out testing of the individual components of cement, aggregates, and water. Understanding the components and the quality of concrete delivered to a site, and through structural engineering, ensures concrete that is often used to support heavy loads is tested to make sure its strength and durability are sufficient.

Concrete testing

Importance of Concrete Testing 

The main criteria of concrete testing is to check the strength compliance of concrete cubes, beams, or cylinders.  It is imperative that the production of test samples is carried out correctly in accordance with British Standards and by trained personnel. By utilising CTS’s skilled technicians and carrying out reliable concrete testing, you can be assured that the concrete used is fully compliant with industry standards and that the results obtained are delivered in accordance with accredited quality standards.

Alongside strength testing of cubes, beams and cylinders, during the concrete testing process CTS utilises temperature maturity and equivalent age comparisons to determine the early-age strength of concrete through the monitoring of early-age temperature gain. This allows the early age strength of in-situ concrete to be monitored and allows the progression of the project at the earliest possible time while ensuring safety and quality is maintained.

Concrete cylinders

At CTS our multi-accredited team carries out all concrete testing services to meet specific standards and requirements ensuring that your projects are fully compliant. 

Fresh Concrete Testing


Determination Of Slump

BS EN 12350-2

Determination Of Flow

BS EN 12350-5

Determination Of Compacting Factor

BS EN 1881-103

Determination Of Air Content

BS EN 12350-7

Degree Of Compactibility

BS EN 12350-4

Bauer Filtration Test

In-house method

Determination Of Bleeding Rate Of Concrete


Column Segregation Resistance

ASTM C1610

Fibre Content (Fresh Sample)

BS EN 14488-7 & BS EN 14721

V Funnel

BS EN 12350-9

L-Box Testing

BS EN 12350-10

Sieve Segregation

BS EN 12350-11

J Ring Testing

BS EN 12350-12

Slump Flow, T500 And Visibility Stability Index (VSI)

BS EN 12350-8

Static Segregation Using Column Technique

ASTM C1610


Physical, mechanical, and chemical tests on hardened concrete help to prove compliance with contract specifications of final products, as well as to gain assurance for the quality of materials used.

Hardened Concrete Testing 


Compressive Strength Of Concrete Cubes BS EN 12390-3
Compressive Strength Of Concrete Cylinders BS EN 12390-3
Flexural Strength Of Concrete Beams BS EN 12390-5
Tensile Strength Of Concrete Cylinders BS EN 12390-6
Compressive Strength Of Concrete Cores BS EN 12504-1
Residual Flexural Strength Of Concrete Beams BS EN 14651 & BS EN 14488
Barcelona Test In-house method
Fibre Content (Hardened Sample) BS EN 14488-7
Hardened Specimen Visual Stability Index (Hvsi) In-house method
Abrasion Resistance BS EN 13892-4

Other Concrete Testing Services 

Our expert team of technicians and engineers carry out a range of concrete testing including:-

  • Concrete maturity (early age strength determination)
  • 3m beam concrete pavements (MOT Straight Edge Assessment)
  • Macro texture (concrete)
  • Water penetration in concrete
  • Water absorption in concrete
  • Crack monitoring
  • Freeze thaw – hardened concrete
  • Determination of secant modulus of elasticity
  • Drying shrinkage
  • Collection of sprayed concrete panels and beam cutting
  • Determination of mix proportions and cement content
  • Pendulum test (slip/skid)
  • Pull-out testing
  • Rebar scanning
  • Schmidt hammer surveys
  • Structural investigation surveys
  • Pavement investigation surveys
  • Supply data logging temperature equipment

CTS helps to assure compliance with all technical and quality aspects throughout a structure’s life.

  • Pre-construction – to understand the concrete composition and its ability to deliver the requirements of the design and comply with specifications.
  • During construction – to assess the acceptability of the fresh state of concrete and ensure compliance with the hardened state strength requirements.
  • Post-construction – to investigate potential failure in concrete, including non-destructive testing, surveying and routine checking.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a concrete cube test?

A concrete cube test is where a hardened concrete cube sample, generally 100mm square, is crushed in a hydraulic machine. An increasing load is applied to the cube until it is destroyed, providing a compressive strength value measured in Newtons per mm squared. (N/mm2)

Why is a cube test important?

Concrete cube tests are essential as they verify the strength of a structure and ensure it meets design load requirements.

How do you test a concrete core?

A concrete core is prepared in a laboratory by preparing each end of the core, the ends are flat and perpendicular to the longitudinal axis of the core. The core is then placed in a hydraulic crushing machine and crushed at a steady rate until ultimate compressive strength is reached.

Why Choose CTS for Concrete Testing? 

Whether evaluating new mix designs, testing for compliance, assessing the condition of in-situ concrete, or investigating reasons for failure, CTS offers a full range of on-site and off-site tests.

Our continued investment in process and technology means we are able to offer a rapid turnaround for some of our laboratory tests.

To find out more about our concrete testing services, please get in touch with a member of the CTS team today, and we’ll be more than happy to answer any questions you may have regarding our services and how we can help you.