Disadvantages of Soil-Cement (Easy Explanation)

Nowadays, soil cement is widely used as a low-costing paving material for roads, airport pavements, interstate highways, etc. This kind of cement is highly economical, capable of providing good weather resistance and strength with a low maintenance cost, etc.

Soil cement has a lot of advantages but it also has a few drawbacks which you will need to do before using it as your pavement material. For example, this cement isn’t compatible with every type of soil. That’s why you will need to examine the soil types before using soil cement.

In today’s article, we have provided the disadvantages of soil cement. Be with us till the end and learn the drawbacks of this cement. So, without any further ado, let’s begin!

Disadvantages of Soil-Cement

What are the Disadvantages of Soil-Cement

Soil cement is a great alternative to asphalt while constructing road pavement. Though it comes with a lot of advantages, it has some notable disadvantages which can’t be overlooked. If they are overlooked then you won’t get the proper outcome from it or they may damage the entire constructed project.

Here are the disadvantages of soil cement. 

1. Water Penetration Issue

One of the major disadvantages is the water penetration issue. If the cement isn’t properly used and cured then the capillary void can stay there. And if they are on a larger scale then water will penetrate and trap inside the pavement.

By this, the strength and durability of the pavement will be decreased.

2. Can Form Cracks

Adding cement to the soil can make the soil more brittle. Cement decreases the flexibility or ductility of the soil. If an excessive amount of cement is used in the soil cement, then using it will lead to forming cracks.

That’s why while mixing cement with the soil, make sure the optimum percentage of cement is lesser than 7% by weight of the soil (soil must be dried).

Moreover, if the soil moisture is more than 10% then you can’t use the soil cement that is created by that soil. Because it will increase the brittleness of the cement. And using them will form cracks, reduce strength, increase permeability, and so on.

3. Can’t be Used with Every Type of Soil

Another disadvantage is that soil cement can’t be used with every type of soil. Especially, it can’t be used with organic soils. Because organic soil slower the setting time and also reduces the strength.

That’s why, before preparing the soil cement, make sure that the soil isn’t organic.

4. Proper Supervision is Required

In soil cement, homogeneous mixing is involved and that’s why proper supervision is required. Homogeneous mixing is a very critical mixing type, if it’s not properly checkout then you won’t be able to get uniform texture, desired properties, etc. However, using this kind of mixing will bring negative effects.

Besides that, the standard need to be followed properly. Otherwise, the outcome won’t bring satisfaction. 

Frequently Asked Questions and Answers (FAQs)

What are the advantages of soil cement?

There are a lot of advantages of soil cement. It has a lower maintenance cost, is inexpensive, can provide better strength and weather resistance, can provide superior performance, etc.

How durable is soil cement?

The soil cement has good shear and compressive strength. After curing for 28 days, the cement can achieve a compressive strength of between 300 psi to 800 psi.

How long does soil cement cure?

The curing process of the soil cement is done in two phases. To complete the process, soil cement needs about 8 days for curing properly. First 7 days, the cement is stored in a moist curing room. And then the soil cement soaked overnight in the water. 

What is the difference between soil cement and concrete?

The major difference between soil cement and concrete is, soil cement is made of soil, cement, and water whereas concrete is made of aggregate, cement, sand, and water. Soil cement is prone to crack but concrete has a lesser chance of forming cracks. Concrete has more strength and durability than soil cement.


Undoubtedly soil cement is a great alternative to asphalt. It is super economical as well as environment friendly. But while using it, you will need to keep the disadvantages in your mind. If you use it by solving the negative side of the soil cement then you will be able to get a proper output from it. Happy construction, Engineer!

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