The Schundler Company
10 Central Street
Nahant, MA 01908



Perlite and vermiculite concrete aggregates combined with portland cement and water produce a lightweight insulating concrete used for lightweight roof decks, floor fills, lightweight structural decks, insulation for steam and coolant lines, bases of cryogenic storage tanks, oven insulation, interstitial spaces in reconditioned water and sewer lines, interstitial floors in hospitals, lightweight pre-cast forms and blocks, statuary, basic fills, and many other applications where a lightweight permanent concrete is desired. When mixing perlite and vermiculite concrete, air entrainment and progressive cavity pumps should be used.


Perlite and vermiculite concretes require air entrainment of some type. The use of the correct amount of air entraining agent is very important. Air entraining agents (essentially special industrial soaps and/or foaming agents) produce countless tiny air bubbles that reduce the density of the concrete, increase the yield, and contribute to the insulation values. These bubbles also help prevent cracking and damage from freeze/thaw cylces. They do this by absorbing the effects of the concrete expanding and contracting.

When adding air entraining agents, generally the intent is to create approximately 8-15% air in the final mix. This can be achieved by a variety of products.

It is important to remember that there are different kinds of air entraining agents and different concentrations. As such, older literature (both our literature and brochures from The Perlite Institute) which recommended as much as six to seven pints of air entraining agents per yard should be disregarded!

Some possible air entraining agents are:

  • Hercules Neutralized Vinsol Resin (NVX)-dry powder.
  • W.R. Grace Daravair 1000-liquid
  • ALCOLAC-Siponic-liquid
  • WA. Meadows double strength-liquid
  • Hoechst AG-Hostapur OS
  • Hill Brothers Chemical Co., Hico 303
  • Hill Brothers Chemical Co., Hico 315
  • Schaumbildner auf Proteinbasis, Protein based foamer
  • Natriumlaurysulfat, Sodiumlauricsulfate
  • Olefinsufonat, Olefinsulphonate
  • Polyglykolather, Polyglycolether
  • Sodiuoleat
  • Witconate

Please note: These companies and products have been used by contractors and transit mix companies during the last few years. There are others being used, and probably any reputable form of air entrainment will work as long as the final result is in the 8-15% air range. By listing these products, we do not not necessarily endorse them or assume any liablity for them or for any mixes made with them.

Perlite Concrete Pumping Equipment


  • Generally, progressive cavity pumps and not piston pumps should be used with perlite and vermiculite concretes. Piston pumps tend to crush and break the lightweight aggregates causing a reduction in yield. In contrast, manufacturers like Robbins Myers (Moyno pumps) and Strong manufacture the progessive cavity pumps which seem to be the best for most perlite and vermiculite applications.

Pumping Hoses

  • Rubber concrete pumping hoses should be a minimum of 3 inches. Smaller diameter hoses increase hose pressure and will result in a greater loss of yield and increased pump, rotor and stator wear. Use only as much hose as is necessary and where the hose goes over a wall make certain that it does not kink. On high rise construction, tie the hose off at each joint.

For more information, please call or contact:

The Schundler Company

10 Central Street
Nahant, MA 01908
732-287-2244 or

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