We talk a lot about the advantages of building with precast concrete in our Rogue Valley Precast blog. We talk comparatively less about the disadvantages of what many consider to be precast concrete’s direct competitor: pour-in-place concrete.

This is because we are precast concrete experts and, therefore, our focus is on making our products the best they can be — not pointing out the deficiencies with other options.

Still, it’s probably a good idea to discuss the disadvantages of pour-in-place concrete in some depth. This will help provide a fuller picture of our industry and the work that goes into making precast the No. 1 choice for builders and other members of the development and construction trades.

So with that framing in mind, let’s look into the disadvantages of pour-in-place concrete (sometimes referred to as cast-in-place concrete or site-cast concrete).

Pour-in-Place Concrete Disadvantages

The sheer mass and size of some concrete constructions — concrete slabs or pilings for enormous office buildings, for example — mean that pour-in-place applications will always have their place. And the similarities between precast and pour-in-place make both seem like good options for smaller applications. But let’s take a closer look.


Buried infrastructure — utility vaults, catch basins, manholes — are well-served by precast concrete’s customizability and reproducibility.

One reason why pour-in-place concrete is disadvantageous for buried infrastructure projects: installation time for concrete products at the construction site or job site.

After the excavation process is complete and bedding is ready, precast concrete forms can be placed immediately.

Pour-in-place applications, however, typically take additional time for rebar applications and inspections once the concrete is poured. Furthermore, these applications are more susceptible to damage and impurities from wind-blown debris and weather events that can affect both the pouring process and hardening.

Production Efficiency

Buried infrastructure comes in many forms, and these forms can be customized and standardized in a precast concrete facility. This leads us to another disadvantage of pour-in-place concrete. It often requires multiple setups depending on specific site and location requirements. This leads to inefficiencies.

Pour-in-place also requires additional labor and machinery — two variables that can be controlled for more easily in a precast concrete facility that has been fine-tuned and optimized.


A final important disadvantage of pour-in-place concrete is that it’s more difficult if not impossible to impose green production restrictions on the applications themselves. Pours can lead to spills, which are wasteful and can be environmentally damaging.

Precast concrete is manufactured as part of a tightly controlled and consistently monitored process. In this process, green and eco-friendly production methods are employed from start to finish. Facilities such as Rogue Valley Precast can trap, recycle, and reuse wastewater and avoid product waste at every step of the process.

Plus, precast concrete is delivered with unmatchable precision. With precast adjustable forms and customizability built into the process, no order is a “special order.”

Questions about precast concrete advantages and disadvantages of pour-in-place? Get in touch with Rogue Valley Precast today.

Logo RPV in white Partners

Logo RPV in white Partners