What is Sharp Sand? | Checkatrade
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What is sharp sand?

Sharp sand is a gritty, coarse sand with grains that are larger and sharper than building sand. It’s also known as grit sand, concrete sand, coarse sand, pit sand and river sand.

What do you use sharp sand for?

Sharp sand can be used for many different things, but it’s most useful when you have a job requiring extra strength and robustness. For example, it’s often mixed with cement to make concrete, screeds and renders.

As well as construction projects, sharp sand can be used when gardening – it’s used in potting soil mixes, to loosen clay soil and to dress lawns, for instance. This is because it enables moisture movement, so it’s good for drainage.

What is sharp sand made of?

Sharp sand is made from quartz rock. It’s mainly mined inland, away from the coast, which means it doesn’t contain salts that might otherwise allow it to absorb moisture from the atmosphere.

Sharp sand is usually dug out of a large pit, around one to two metres below ground level. It can come either washed or dry screeded.

Washed means that the sand has been screened and washed with water to remove clay, dust and other particles (however, it won’t usually be washed as thoroughly as other kinds of sand to keep it sharp and rough in texture). On the other hand, dry screeded means it’s simply passed through a vibrating screen or drum to filter out larger particles.

What does sharp sand look like?

Sharp sand is often orangy-red in colour. It’s made up of large, angular pieces of sand, giving it a coarse, gritty texture.

What is sharp sand good for?

Here are some projects that sharp sand would be ideal for:

  • Concrete
  • Render
  • Floor screeds
  • Patio base
  • Base for driveways
  • Lawn care
  • Landscaping
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