Cement vs. Concrete: Understanding the Difference

Don’t start a concrete project until you know the difference between cement and concrete mix.

People often say ‘cement’ and ‘concrete’ interchangeably, but these words have different meanings. Here’s what you should know about cement vs. concrete.

A pile of cement, in powder form, appears with a seamless white background. It will be added to concrete mix later.
Cement is just one ingredient in concrete mix. (DepositPhotos)

What is Cement?

First, cement is not concrete — it’s just one ingredient of concrete. That’s the most important thing to know because many reputable sources confuse the two.

In fact, the dictionary currently lists concrete as another word for cement, and that couldn’t be more wrong!

Cement is a powder that contains all kinds of ingredients you’ll never need to identify — but if you’re wondering, they’re alumina, iron oxide, lime, magnesium oxide and silica.

These ingredients are burned in a kiln and then pulverized to create cement. The end product is just one ingredient of concrete and mortar (along with stucco, thin-set adhesive and tile grout).

The fact is, a project containing only cement wouldn’t last long. That’s because cement is never used alone — it’s always mixed with other ingredients.

But that doesn’t mean cement isn’t a valuable ingredient! A typical bag of concrete mix contains about 15 percent cement,

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Mold Inspection: 6 Places Where Mold Can Grow

Roofs have many hidden places where leaks can form, causing mold and headaches down the road. (DepositPhotos)

Even a small roof leak can lead to water damage and rapid mold growth in your attic — both of which are costly issues. Maintaining your roof and conducting a regular mold inspection is vital to catching damage early and preventing big issues later.

The question is, do you know where to look for leaks? If you’re like most homeowners, you probably don’t, so here are six places where your roof can leak.

Closeup of roof valley, the seam between two sections of black metal roofing
Roof valleys are a common source for leaks. (DepositPhotos)

1. Old or Damaged Roof Valleys

A roof valley is where two planes of a roof meet, creating a seam of sorts in the roofing material. Roof valleys can be prone to leaks if the roofer doesn’t properly install and safeguard them.

You can spot roof valley damage by watching for discoloration, such as dark shingles or rust. During the mold inspection, it’s also a good idea to look up in the attic — specifically where your roof peaks.

Bucket in living room, collecting rainwater from leaking attic
If this is a familiar sight, check your attic for leaks. (DepositPhotos)

2. Leak from the Attic

An attic leak isn’t necessarily

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Mold Removal: When to DIY the Job or Hire A Pro

You don’t necessarily have to hire a pro to remove mold. (DepositPhotos)

Finding mold in your home can be very disheartening. Even worse is finding out the cost of professional mold removal.

A few factors must be determined before deciding whether you can do the mold removal and clean-up yourself or hire a company to do it for you.

Here is what you need to know.

Distressed woman looks at mold damage on the home she just purchased
Should you handle the mold removal? That depends on the size of the area. (DepositPhotos)

Consider the Area’s Size

The biggest determining factor in whether to hire a mold professional is the size of the affected area. The Environmental Protection Agency recommends that, in most instances, a licensed professional should only be contacted if the area exceeds 10 square feet.

Unfortunately, determining the size of the area is not always easy because mold may be hidden on the backside of your home’s walls.

Finding a small area of mold on the walls’ front side doesn’t mean you won’t find larger areas within the wall cavity.

Mold spores, as seen under a microscope
Mold spores may be microscopic, but they can still wreak havoc on your health. (DepositPhotos)

Mold Spores: Invisible to the Eye

Finding a colony of mold on a water-damaged

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Is Your Lennox Warranty Enough Coverage?

A Lennox warranty comes with every new HVAC product. Home warranties lower repair costs after the manufacturer’s warranty expires. See what provider we suggest. | Photo Credit: Shutterstock © Breadmaker

Have you recently bought a Lennox HVAC system? Do you have an older Lennox product that you want to protect from expensive repair and replacement costs? When it comes to getting coverage, you want the best Lennox warranty protection.

Lennox International Inc. includes basic manufacturer warranties with new products, but it does not provide full lifetime coverage on products. That means you’re on the hook for repair costs as these products age. 

To save you the stress and to get coverage on your Lennox products, as well as your other home systems and appliances, we recommend a home warranty plan. We’ll explain Lennox Warranty coverage and what providers we think are the best home warranty companies. Then, you can compare quotes to find the right fit for your home.

In This Article:

Today’s Homeowner works with an independent reviews team to create evidence-based research that helps our readers make informed decisions. The reviews are always independent. For transparency, we may be compensated if you purchase through a link.

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Top 5 Questions About Concrete

Danny Lipford spreading concrete mix inside a house
Working with concrete is easier than you may think, but proper prep, production and finishing are necessary to ensure the best results.

Working with concrete may seem complicated for the novice do-it-yourselfer, especially with different mixes and directions to follow. But with a little knowledge, it is easy to use around your home.

Here are the top five questions we receive about concrete, along with answers that will empower you to work with it.

Man pours concrete countertop mix into melamine forms
No one wants to pour concrete mix into a form and suddenly realize they don’t have enough. Always measure the project area before purchasing materials.

1. How much concrete mix do I need?

Concrete is measured in cubic feet, so measure the project area’s volume before visiting the home and garden center to purchase concrete mix.

Math isn’t necessary, but you will need the project area’s length and width in feet, and its height in inches. Then, enter those measurements in our quantity calculator.

Need more specific calculations? Try Quikrete’s calculators for concrete mix, mortar mix, fast-setting concrete, concrete crack sealant, mortar joint sealant and polymeric jointing sands, among other products. The calculator will tell you the number of bags you will need for your

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Closet Organization: How to Store Seasonal Clothes

I’ve never met a home with enough space for everyone’s things. That’s especially true for clothes. Here’s how you can maximize closet space and store seasonal clothes.

Does your closet look like this? If so, it’s time to declutter! (DepositPhotos)

1. Remove Seasonal Clothes

Look in your closet. If your hangers have clothes that span the four seasons, that’s the first problem! If it’s summer, you don’t need to access winter clothes because you won’t wear them.

If you’ve run out of closet space, remove those out-of-season clothes and temporarily place them on the bed. Now look at your closet — voila! Instant, additional storage for your in-season clothes.

Piles of clothes for keeping or donating
If you’ve never sorted the clothes in your closet, make a pile to keep and a pile to donate. (©faithie | Adobe Stock Photos)

2. Sort Seasonal Clothes

Look at the out-of-season clothes on your bed. If you’ve never organized your closet, there may be years — even decades — of clothes you’ve stored and forgotten. Things you haven’t even worn or even seen in several years.

And there’s a good chance that many of these items are outdated or don’t fit anymore. If you never plan to wear something again,

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