July 9, 2024 at 8:51 am

Concrete Worker Tried To Talk A Man Out Of Using His Solution To Clean His Car, But He Insisted And It Absolutely Ruined The Vehicle’s Finish

by Matthew Gilligan

Source: Reddit/Unsplash/@beatriznovaes

A word to the wise: never mess with a concrete truck driver.

Actually, you probably shouldn’t mess with anyone who works with heavy machinery…

Because they usually know what they’re doing!

Check out what took place when this guy had to put someone in his place.

Start now!

You want to use my “truck wash” on your car? I do not feel sorry for what is about to happen here.

“Concrete mixers are big, ungainly things. Trying to maneuver them around a crowded jobsite is like trying to play miniature golf with a tennis ball.

The biggest problem is, of course, other people, specifically other people’s cars. Nobody is going to lug 50 pounds of tools any further than they have to, so if there is an open space near where they want to be, they park there, never mind that it is right next to a sidewalk or directly across from a driveway that a crew is obviously prepping.

You know the type…

It only makes things worse when it’s done by people who should know better (and done intentionally).

So, we’re pumping a grout walls in the late afternoon, which already has me in a bit of a mood. Grout jobs tend to be very slow. Each cinder block has two cells, and the crew pumps the grout into those cells filling them all the way to the top of the wall.

Grout is really just a term for a weak concrete mix that is pumped super wet. It has to be that wet to make it all the way to the bottom of the wall, otherwise it sticks to the sides of the cinder blocks (or gets caught up on steel reinforcement).

There is a lot of stopping and starting, as well as a lot of moving the pump. It all takes time, during which that concrete starts to go off and stiffen up.

Things only get worse on a hot day, and the subs will do anything to get more water in the load (addicts looking for a fix have nothing on grout pumpers eyeballing your last 20 gallons).

As we move to a new street, we find a line of cars parked all along the side of the street we are working on, just far enough apart to take up as much space as possible without leaving enough room to get the pump in there. Turns out it is another concrete crew setting up to do patios.

No problem, we’re all concrete guys here, and they know how it is. We ask them to move. That I am writing this post tells you what their response was.

This didn’t look good…

It turns out they are waiting for their own pump and mixer to show up, and they intentionally blocked the street because they don’t want us to be in their way. Their crew chief tells us we can wait for them to finish and move on, or we can just work around them.

It’s pretty obvious he expects us to wait.

Waiting is, of course, going to make the concrete go off even more and will rack up standby charges for the customer, but trying to work around their cars is going to mean blocking the street and rolling up the hose every time we move (normally the crew just drags/carries it down the sidewalk, but we can’t do that with the cars in the way).

It would take much longer; depending on when their pump shows up, it might not even save us any time. Still, Todd the pumper rolls his pump right up next to the lead car and feeds his hose out around it.

At the best of times, a concrete pump farts and sputters like a nervous chihuahua, flinging small globs of concrete out the hopper. If the driver isn’t paying attention and accidentally lets the concrete level get too low, the pump sucks in air.

Not a pretty sight!

Feeding a concrete pump air is like feeding a hippopotamus Olestra; it’s not pretty, and it gets everywhere. We probably end up moving that pump twice as many times as we have to, but it ensures that every single one of those cars gets to spend some quality time next to the hopper.

We finish are done with the job and are washing out the pump when the crew chief (whose own concrete and pump still haven’t shown up yet) storms over to complain about all the concrete splatter on their cars.

Told ya so!

I point out that we told them we’d be pumping there and asked them to move, but they refused. At this point he sees that I have a truck wash bucket strapped to my water tank and demands I let him use it to clean off his car.

I tell him that is a terrible idea, smoking lounge on the Hindenburg levels of terrible. The stuff we use is designed to dissolve dried concrete, and it will probably damage his car.

The concrete is fresh enough that he can probably just rinse it off with water. He isn’t having it. He tells me to stop lying; if it doesn’t damage my truck, it won’t hurt his car. Besides, he’s done this before and knows what he is doing.

Now, keeping a concrete mixer clean is a downright Sisyphean task. No matter how hard you try, chutes overflow, pumps splatter, and plants huff cement powder all over your truck.

There are a variety of chemicals used to clean off concrete, and most of the modern mixes are relatively safe (for something that can dissolve concrete).

Our plants provide a phosphoric acid mix (relatively safe isn’t the same as actually safe) to any drivers that need it, so it quite common for there to be a bucket of it stashed somewhere on the truck.

Of course, part of what makes these chemicals safer also makes them somewhat less effective. That’s why some of us will bring in our own cleaning products to fortify the company mix.

These are not the friendly chemicals that will just leave you with a mild chemical burn; my bucket of fun dips down to the good old days of leaded gasoline, asbestos and red dye no. 2.

He tried to warn him…

Still, I warned him, and he assured me he knew what he was doing. Besides, he’s intentionally being a jerk and expected my sub to pay standby for his convenience.

I let him have the bucket.

I half expect him to stop when he pulls the lid off. The witch’s brew in the bucket smells like Walter White’s bathtub. Somehow, the fact that his nose hairs are curling up like a spider in a flame doesn’t seem to faze him. Brush goes in the bucket.

This wasn’t gonna have a happy ending…

Brush comes out of the bucket. Brush slams onto the hood of the car with a wet slap. I can only watch in mute horror as the man proceeds to not just clear off the concrete, but bathe his entire hood in hydrochloric acid, rubbing it in to get out all those nasty water spots.

It’s like watching an orphan unwittingly skin his favorite puppy. None of us stick around long enough to see the final result, but it is already apparent that he has scrubbed off the clear coat and is in the process of etching brush marks in the paint.

I don’t want to be anywhere near him when that hood dries out. I let him keep the bucket.”

Let’s see what folks had to say about this.

This person shared their thoughts.

Source: Reddit

Another individual was impressed.

Source: Reddit

This Reddit user spoke up.

Source: Reddit

Another person chimed in.

Source: Reddit

He tried to tell him…

Some people just don’t know how to listen!

If you liked that post, check out this post about a woman who tracked down a contractor who tried to vanish without a trace.