Crushed Concrete Calculator How Much Crushed Concrete Do I Need?

Crushed Concrete Calculator

Crushed Concrete Material Calculator

Welcome to the Crushed Concrete Calculator!

This handy tool helps you estimate the quantity and weight of crushed concrete needed for your project. To use the calculator, follow these simple steps:

  1. Enter the dimensions of your project:
    • Length (feet): The length of the area you plan to cover with crushed concrete.
    • Width (feet): The width of the area.
    • Depth (inches): The desired depth of the crushed concrete layer in inches.
  2. Click the "Calculate" button, and the calculator will provide you with the estimated:
    • Cubic yards of crushed concrete required for your project.
    • Estimated weight in pounds (lbs) and tons (if applicable) for both broken and solid concrete.
  3. Use the results to plan your project efficiently.

Please note that this calculator is for estimation purposes only, and actual requirements may vary based on the specific properties of the crushed concrete and the project conditions. Feel free to adjust the dimensions and recalculate as needed.

Enjoy using the Crushed Concrete Calculator for your construction and landscaping projects!

A crushed Concrete Calculator can be an excellent tool for calculating Crushed concrete needs. As a licensed civil engineer and construction specialist with over 20 years of experience, I’m often asked by clients – how much-crushed concrete is required for projects like base layers, trench backfilling, or landscaping. Accurately estimating crushed concrete quantities is an essential skill I’ve honed over my career. In this article, I’ll share tips on precisely calculating your crushed concrete needs using a step-by-step calculator approach.

I’m Steve Axton. Through my website,, I provide practical insights like this crushed concrete calculator to contractors and property owners planning construction projects. Taking the time to accurately estimate materials needs helps optimize budgets, efficiency, and design performance. Let’s walk through sizing up your crushed concrete requirements.

Crushed Concrete Volume Estimator

Follow this 4-step process to calculate your needs:

Step 1: Measure Site Dimensions

  • Length x Width = Area in ft2 for rectangular shapes
  • Divide irregular areas into sections and sum

Step 2: Determine Fill Depth

  • Base thickness, trench depth, or layer height as required
  • Consult engineering recommendations for structural needs

Step 3: Estimate Crushed Concrete Density

  • Typically 1,350-1,450 lbs/yd3 depending on gradation
  • Finer grades result in higher density when compacted

Step 4: Calculate Volume then Tons

  • Volume = Area x Depth
  • Tons = Volume x Density / 2,000 lbs/ton

Let’s apply the estimator to determine crushed concrete for a project example:

Table 1. Crushed Concrete Calculator Example
Parameter Sample Value Calculation
Area 1,250 ft2 50 ft x 25 ft
Depth 6 inches
Density 1,400 lbs/yd3
Volume 23.15 yd3 1,250 ft2 x 0.5 ft Depth
Tons 16.3 23.15 yd3 x 1,400 lbs/yd3 / 2,000 lbs/ton

Asphalt Calculator Get Asphalt Quantity and Cost

Key Factors in Estimating Quantity

To achieve an accurate crushed concrete estimate, focus attention on:


  • Precise length x width with no gaps or overlaps
  • Account for all landscape and footprint deductions
  • Verify depth needed per plans and recommendations

Crushed Concrete Density

  • Density varies from 1,350-1,450 lbs/yd3 typically
  • Finer gradations result in greater compaction density
  • Actual results provided by supplier testing


  • Structural needs like base and slabs need 4-8 inch depth
  • Backfill, drainage, and mulch require shallower layers
  • Match usage specifications to building codes and engineering
Table 2. Key Data Needed for Crushed Concrete Estimating
Item Importance
Square Footprint Ensures full coverage without excess
Depth/Thickness Matches amount to structural and grading requirements
Density Needed to convert from cubic yards to tons
Application Quantity tailored to project specifications

Estimating Mistakes to Avoid

Some common crushed concrete estimating errors I see include:

Being diligent in avoiding these crushed concrete estimating pitfalls ensures calculation accuracy. Let me know if you need any guidance assessing your project’s needs!

Frequently Asked Questions

Where to buy concrete?

As a civil engineer who routinely works on construction projects requiring concrete, I typically purchase ready-mix concrete from local concrete suppliers in the area. Major national chains like CEMEX and Lafarge Holcim operate ready-mix concrete plants in most major cities. There are also many regional and local concrete companies to choose from. When starting a project, I’ll locate the ready-mix plants closest to the job site and obtain quotes from several suppliers. Competition helps ensure reasonable pricing. Plants located nearer the pour location are ideal to reduce transit time in the drum trucks. Quality control credentials and mix design capabilities are other factors I consider when selecting a ready-mix concrete vendor.

What size crushed stone under a concrete slab?

For constructing concrete building slabs, I typically specify a subbase layer of 4 inches thick of 3/4 inch crushed stone or gravel. This provides a level, compacted base to support the slab and uniform drainage below it. The angular crushed stone also interlocks well to provide a firm subbase that resists movement. For industrial floors seeing heavy loads, the subbase could increase to 8 inches thick or more of 3/4 inch crushed stone or recycled concrete aggregate.

The key is ensuring a stable, uniform subgrade for the concrete slab to prevent settling cracks and other slab defects.

Layer Thickness Material
Slab 6 inches Concrete
Subbase 4 inches 3/4 inch Crushed Stone
Subgrade Compacted Soil


Where to buy crushed concrete near me?

To reuse concrete rubble from demolished structures, I locate nearby concrete recycling centers that process debris into crushed concrete aggregate. Searching online directories or construction sites provides good references. Factors like proximity to the project site and recycled concrete costs are important economic considerations. Major concrete and demolition contractors in my area also operate their own recycling facilities.

I tour potential suppliers to check capabilities and inventory. Lab testing on samples verifies the crushed concrete meets graduation, purity, and strength specs. Utilizing locally recycled aggregate cuts costs and benefits the environment.

How much does a yard of crushed concrete weigh?

A cubic yard of crushed concrete can weigh from 2,400 to 2,900 lbs based on its density. The density can vary based on the properties of the original concrete mix design, the crushing process, and the size/grading of the crushed concrete. Given a density of approximately 2,600 lbs/yd3, a general rule of thumb I use for estimating is that a cubic yard of crushed concrete weighs about 2,700 lbs (or 1.35 tons). The actual weight will vary depending on the properties of the aggregate and moisture content, so testing is always advisable for accurate mix designs.

Material Density (lbs/yd3) Weight per cubic yard
Crushed Concrete 2,400 – 2,900 Approximately 2,700 lbs


How much is crushed concrete?

In my region, crushed concrete costs $18-25 per ton on average when purchased from local recycling centers or quarries. However, prices vary widely based on factors like location, volume purchased, and aggregate size/quality. Small contractors may pay over $30/ton from small suppliers, while large highway contractors can pay under $15/ton for high volumes. Delivery fees can also significantly impact overall cost.

As a civil engineer, I analyze options to find recycled concrete that meets project specs at the most economical pricing. Using recycled concrete often saves 20-30% compared to virgin aggregates.

Will crushed concrete harden?

No, crushed recycled concrete aggregate does not harden like fresh concrete. The hydration reaction that provides concrete its strength has already occurred in the original concrete before it was crushed. The cement paste is already hardened, so combining the old hardened paste with new cement and water will not cause it to re-harden. However, new concrete containing crushed concrete aggregate will still harden normally.

The old paste merely acts as an inert filler. Properly crushing old concrete into uniform gradations creates excellent aggregate for cost-effective new concrete mixes.

Is crushed concrete good for driveways:

Yes, crushed concrete makes an excellent base material for driveways. Its angular particles form a strong, interlocking base that withstands heavy vehicle loads without compacting. Drainage is enhanced compared to clay soils. Installing a 6-8 inch layer of 3/4 inch minus crushed concrete topped by a thinner wearing surface of gravel or asphalt creates an affordable, durable driveway. Maintenance is easy by occasionally adding new topping rather than re-grading the base. The use of locally recycled concrete aggregate cuts materials costs while providing quality performance.

Where can I buy concrete?

To purchase ready-mix concrete for construction projects, I locate the concrete suppliers operating batch plants in the vicinity. Major national ready-mix companies like CEMEX and Lafarge Holcim are options in most urban areas, along with many regional and local concrete producers. I obtain quotes from several vendors based on the pour site location and concrete specs required. Ordering from batch plants close to the job site minimizes transport time in the drum truck and provides the most competitive pricing options. Quality control and customer service are other factors I consider when selecting a ready-mix concrete supplier for a project.

How to crush concrete into gravel?

The process I use to crush concrete rubble into gravel-sized aggregate for reuse involves several steps:

  1. Break large concrete pieces into 2-3 foot sizes with a demolition hammer or ram hoe-ram.
  2. Feed concrete chunks into a jaw crusher capable of 1-2” output gradation.
  3. Screen crushed concrete through a 1-1/2″ screen into coarse and fine fractions.
  4. Process fine fraction in an impact crusher equipped with a 1/2″ screen.
  5. Combine coarse and fine fractions to achieve specified 3/4″, 1” or 1-1/2″ gradation for subbase material.
  6. Use a magnetic separator to remove rebar from the aggregate.

This produces high-quality recycled concrete aggregate suitable for foundations, gravel roads or asphalt mixes.

What is crushed concrete used for?

As a versatile construction material, crushed concrete can be recycled and reused in numerous applications, including:

  • Road base or subbase material
  • Pipe bedding and utility trenches
  • Landscaping and gravel driveways
  • Concrete mixes for pavements or structures
  • Drainage applications such as French drains
  • General backfill and embankment fill
  • Base layer under concrete slabs
  • Parking lot and driveway base

Recycling old concrete into crushed aggregate takes an unusable waste material and turns it into a productive, environmentally-friendly construction product.

Can I use broken concrete as a fill?

Yes, broken concrete pieces can effectively be used as fill material. The key is proper particle size, compaction effort, and placement technique for the application. For structural fill, I specify that broken concrete must be reduced to particles under 3-4 inches in size without excessive fines to allow adequate compaction. Larger pieces are more suitable for non-structural bulk fill applications. Preventing segregation during placement is also important to achieve uniform compaction.

With the right methods, reusing clean broken concrete as compacted fill is a safe, sustainable solution.

How much does crushed concrete cost?

In my region, crushed concrete purchased from a supplier generally costs $18-35 per ton on average. Prices vary based on the aggregate size and quality specifications needed as well as transportation distance. Large highway projects may pay $15-18/ton for high volumes, while smaller contractors purchasing from local suppliers will pay up to $40/ton delivered. Factors like construction demand, fuel costs, and recycled concrete availability in my area influence pricing.

For major projects, I work to identify concrete recycling sources that balance required aggregate properties with the most economical pricing.

How to crush concrete?

To produce crushed concrete aggregate for recycling, these are the typical steps I follow using different crushing machinery:

  1. Initially break down oversized concrete chunks to <36” size using a hoe ram or hydraulic breaker.
  2. Feed concrete sections into a jaw crusher to produce 6-12” sized pieces.
  3. Screen crushed concrete through a cog screen to separate 2-6” aggregate from fines.
  4. Convey larger chunks to an impact crusher to reduce to 1.5” nominal size.
  5. Process 1.5” material through final screens to achieve the required gradation for the application.
  6. Use a magnet separator to remove reinforcing steel from the crushed concrete.
  7. Stockpile and test completed recycled concrete aggregate to verify it meets specifications.

Is crushed concrete toxic?

No, crushed recycled concrete aggregate is not toxic or hazardous to handle. I have not encountered any toxicity issues in decades of working with crushed concrete as a construction material. Properly recycled concrete contains common components used in standard concrete mixes – aggregates, hardened cement paste, and sand. No chemicals are released during the crushing process.

As with any construction material, it’s recommended to wear protective masks to avoid inhaling fine dust particles generated when handling crushed concrete. Overall, crushed concrete is classified as an inert material that is safe to use in a wide range of applications.

Is gravel cheaper than concrete?

In most cases, gravel is significantly cheaper than concrete based on a cost-per-ton comparison. Gravel prices range from $15-45 per ton on average, derived from readily available natural deposits. In contrast, ready-mix concrete averages $90-155 per cubic yard, with extensive processing required in batch plants. Gravel’s lower cost makes it more economical for applications not requiring concrete’s higher strength. However, other factors like haul distance and project size also affect total cost differences for specific projects.

In general, utilizing locally available gravel aggregates will be the most cost-effective option when high-strength concrete is not needed.

What does crushed concrete look like?

Crushed recycled concrete typically has an angular gravel-like particle shape and texture consisting of various sizes from fines up to the maximum specified top-size grading. Colors vary depending on the aggregate type and cement color in the original concrete mix. Crushed concrete containing some un-hydrated cement particles has a light gray tone. Concrete produced from limestone/white gravel appears tan/light brown. Other common colors are medium to dark gray concrete aggregates, depending on the originating aggregate type in the concrete. Appearance matters most for architectural concrete, while structural applications focus on the engineering gradation properties of crushed concrete.

What is crushed concrete?

Crushed concrete is the recycled fragments of demolished concrete structures that are processed through crushing equipment to produce a well-graded and consistent aggregate gradation for reuse in construction. The crushing process breaks old concrete rubble into useful new aggregates of various sizes between fines and a specified maximum dimension such as 1.5 inches. With careful quality control and separation of contaminants, the resulting crushed concrete aggregate offers an environmentally and economically sound construction material.

What is RCA stone?

RCA stands for recycled concrete aggregate, which is also commonly referred to as crushed concrete. It consists of the crushed fragments created from demolished concrete structures. The concrete is processed through various steps of crushing and screening to reduce the rubble into graded aggregates suitable for new concrete mixes or other construction applications. As an environmentally-friendly material that replaces conventional aggregates, the use of recycled concrete aggregate continues to grow.

The terms RCA and crushed concrete are used interchangeably to describe this sustainable construction material.

What size is crushed stone for a concrete slab?

For constructing concrete slabs, I typically specify a crushed stone subbase layer at least 4 inches thick using 3/4″ nominal size aggregate. The 3/4″ crushed stone particles offer good interlock and drainage capabilities below the slab. Increasing the subbase thickness to 6 inches or using a 1-inch aggregate is better for heavy-duty industrial slabs or poor subgrade conditions. The uniform-graded crushed stone layer provides consistent support to maintain proper slab elevations and prevent future settlement issues.

Layer Thickness Material
Concrete Slab 6 inches Concrete
Subbase 4-6 inches 3/4″ or 1” Crushed Stone
Subgrade Compacted Soil


Where to buy crushed concrete?

To obtain crushed concrete for construction projects, I locate nearby concrete recycling plants that produce it by crushing old concrete rubble and remnants. Quarries, building demolition contractors, roadwork contractors, and major waste management firms are typical sources. I visit their operations to verify capabilities and quality control practices firsthand. Testing crushed concrete samples is critical to ensure the material meets the required engineering gradations and purity for its intended application.

Sourcing crushed concrete locally is key to achieving competitive pricing and material quality.

Can you rent a concrete crusher:

Yes, specialized concrete crushing equipment can be rented to recycle concrete from demolition projects. Typical machines available for rent include mobile jaw crushers, impact crushers, and cone crushers in various sizes. Screening plants may also be rented as part of the concrete crushing and processing system. Leading demolition attachment manufacturers like Atlas Copco and LaBounty offer mobile crushing units to rent for both short and long-term needs.

I evaluate project concrete tonnage and rental rates to determine the economic feasibility of on-site mobile crushing compared to off-site disposal.

Can crushed concrete be used as an aggregate?

Absolutely, crushed recycled concrete is an excellent sustainable aggregate material that can be used as a direct replacement for natural stone aggregates in many construction applications. After old concrete is processed through crushing and screening equipment to achieve suitable gradations for aggregates, the material can be effectively used in concrete, asphalt, granular bases, embankments, subgrades, pipes, and other uses comparable to conventional quarried aggregates. Using locally available recycled concrete is an environmentally and economically sound alternative to extracted aggregates.

Can crushed glass be used in concrete?

Yes, crushed recycled glass cullet can be used as a partial fine aggregate replacement in concrete mixes at replacement levels typically 15% or less. The smooth glass particles enhance concrete workability and finishability. However, higher amounts can result in decreased strength and alkali-silica reactivity. Glass must be crushed to under 1/4″ size without slivers and properly processed to achieve required gradations and remove contaminants.

With prudence, utilizing recycled glass cullet as a supplementary cementitious material in concrete provides environmental benefits and improves performance.

Can I use crushed concrete for a driveway?

Crushed recycled concrete aggregate makes an excellent material choice for driveway bases. Its angular particles and rough texture form a strong interlocking base that withstands heavy vehicle loads without compacting or deforming. Permeability is greater than clay soils, enhancing drainage performance. Durability is also increased compared to gravel driveways. Installing a 6 to 8-inch layer of 3/4 inch crushed recycled concrete topped by a thin asphalt or gravel driving surface creates an affordable, long-lasting driveway.

Using locally available recycled concrete as a driveway base is an environmentally sound decision that provides quality performance.

Can I use crushed concrete for the paver base?

Yes, crushed recycled concrete works extremely well as a base layer under concrete paver installations. Its angular aggregate particles form a solid, interlocking subbase that provides excellent structural support for the pavers above when compacted. Drainage characteristics are also superior to native soils. For heavy-duty applications, I recommend installing a 6-8 inch subbase layer of 3/4” crushed concrete, topped by a 1-2 inch bedding layer of coarser sand or stone screenings. The recycled concrete base prevents settlement issues and extends the pavement life.

Using recycled concrete as a paver base is an environmentally friendly and cost-effective choice.

Can you use crushed concrete for drainage?

Crushed recycled concrete aggregate is an excellent drainage material choice compared to traditional gravel aggregates. Its angular particles and rough surface texture allow good permeability and water flow characteristics. Typically a 1.5″ maximum size crushed concrete drainage aggregate allows void spaces for effective water capture in french drains or infiltration systems. Larger top size gradations over 3″ work for drainage swales or ditch lining. Using locally available and economically-priced crushed concrete drainage aggregate supports environmentally sustainable stormwater management.

Can you use crushed concrete for the paver base?

Yes, crushed concrete is well-suited as a base layer under interlocking concrete paver installations to provide a stable foundation. Its angular particles compact tightly for a strong subbase that resists consolidation and deformation. Porosity is adequate for drainage compared to native soils. For heavy-duty paved areas, I recommend installing 6 to 8 inches of well-graded 3/4 inch minus crushed concrete. A 2-inch bedding layer of coarse sand or limestone screenings above the concrete base helps level and seat the pavers.

The recycled concrete subbase prevents future settlement issues and can substantially extend the pavement service life when properly constructed.

Can you use a crusher run for concrete?

Crusher-run stone with matrix fines is not an ideal subbase material for concrete slabs due to potential excessive settlement issues under the slab. For quality concrete slab support, a clean open-graded crushed stone layer with 3/4″ size (such as #57 stone) is preferred for subbase use under slabs. However, crusher-run products like #21A or #21B do work well for road bases, asphalt bases, and structural fill applications where compaction and particle interlock are essential properties.

In my expereince as a construction manager and civil engineer, crusher run is better suited for flexible pavements and structures rather than use under rigid slabs or footings.

Do you need crushed rock under concrete?

It is recommended to install a layer of crushed rock under exterior concrete slabs on grade for a quality foundation. Typical recommendations are to provide 4 to 8 inches of clean crushed rock like 3/4 inch minus crushed stone or gravel under the slab. The crushed rock base serves several purposes:

  • Provides level, uniform support to prevent slab cracking
  • Allows for proper slab drainage and frost protection
  • Maintains proper slab elevations and minimizes future settlement
  • Creates separation between subgrade and concrete to interrupt capillary moisture rise through the slab

So providing an adequate layer of compacted crushed rock subbase is important under exterior concrete slabs exposed to freeze-thaw and wet conditions. It leads to better slab performance.

Does crushed concrete drain?

Yes, crushed recycled concrete typically offers good permeability and drainage characteristics compared to natural virgin aggregates. The angular crushed concrete particles tend to lock together less tightly than rounded natural stone, creating more void spaces for water passage and drainage. The drainage capabilities can be impacted by the original water-to-cement ratio of the concrete being crushed. But graded properly, crushed concrete functions as an excellent permeable base or subbase material in pavement systems and drainage applications. Using locally available, affordable crushed concrete typically enhances drainage capacity compared to traditional dense-graded aggregates.

Does crushed concrete harden?

No, recycled crushed concrete aggregate does not re-harden like fresh concrete after it

What projects commonly use crushed concrete?

Construction base layers, trench backfill, driveways, landscaping, drainage fill, and aggregate in new concrete.

How much does crushed concrete cost?

$25-$50 per ton is typical based on local materials, delivery, and project scale. Get quotes from suppliers.

How do I estimate how much-crushed concrete underlies an existing slab?

Examine depth at an exposed edge if possible. Otherwise may need to probe through the slab or do minor excavation to determine thickness.

Can you compact crushed concrete with a plate compactor?

Yes, a gas-powered plate compactor is perfect for achieving maximum density and stability with crushed concrete used as base fill.

What thickness of crushed concrete makes a good base for a shed foundation?

Normally 6-8 inches of well compacted crushed concrete provides sufficient structural support for a typical shed or outbuilding.


Was this article helpful?

I'm Steve Axton, a dedicated Asphalt Construction Manager with over 25 years of experience paving the future of infrastructure. My journey with asphalt began by studying civil engineering and learning about core pavement materials like aggregate, binder and additives that compose this durable and versatile substance. I gained hands-on experience with production processes including refining, mixing and transporting during my internships, which opened my eyes to real-world uses on roads, driveways and parking lots. Over the past decades, I have deepened my expertise in asphalt properties like viscosity, permeability and testing procedures like Marshall stability and abrasion. My time with respected construction companies has honed my skills in paving techniques like milling, compaction and curing as well as maintenance activities like crack filling, resurfacing and recycling methods. I'm grateful for the knowledge I've gained about standards from Superpave to sustainability best practices that balance longevity, cost and environmental friendliness. It's been an incredibly rewarding career working with this complex material to build the infrastructure future.