What is the difference between regular concrete and mortar mix?

What is the difference between regular concrete and mortar mix? Why can't regular concrete be used as a sub-base underneath Kotastones?


10/11/20231 min read

Regular concrete and mortar mix are distinct building materials with different compositions and purposes. Here are the key differences:

  1. Composition:

    • Regular Concrete: Concrete typically consists of a mixture of cement, aggregates (both coarse and fine), and water. It is a strong and durable material used for a wide range of construction applications, including foundations, slabs, walls, and structural elements.

    • Mortar Mix: Mortar is made by blending cement, fine sand, and water. It is designed to bond building blocks, bricks, or stones together in masonry and wall construction. Mortar is not as strong as concrete, but it provides a strong adhesive bond.

  2. Strength:

    • Concrete is generally much stronger than mortar because it contains coarse aggregates that enhance its load-bearing capacity.

    • Mortar is designed primarily for bonding and is not meant to support heavy structural loads.

As for your specific question about using regular concrete as a sub-base for Kota stones, the primary reason you wouldn't typically use regular concrete as a sub-base for natural stone like Kota stone is its hardness and rigidity. Regular concrete is strong and can be less forgiving, causing issues for natural stone.

Kota stones are a type of natural stone often used in flooring. They are relatively thin and have a smooth or honed surface. Natural stones like Kota stones are more prone to cracking or breaking when subjected to uneven or rigid surfaces. The rigidity of regular concrete can create pressure points and may not provide the flexibility needed to accommodate the natural variations in the stone's thickness and the settling of the sub-base over time.

Instead, a more suitable sub-base for Kota stones would typically be a combination of compacted, well-graded aggregate material like crushed stone or gravel. This type of sub-base provides a level, yet somewhat flexible and forgiving foundation for natural stone flooring, helping to distribute weight more evenly and reduce the risk of cracking or breakage in the stone.