What is a Cement Silo?

Malcolm Tatum

Cement silos are on-site storage containers used for the storage and distribution of various types of cement mixtures. Silos of this type come in a variety of sizes, making them ideal for use at many kinds of construction sites. A cement silo can be a permanent structure, or a portable model that can be relocated when necessary. Like many other types of silos, the cement silo usually is equipped with some type of blower to help expel the stored contents into a truck or other receptacle.

Dry cement powder.
Dry cement powder.

A cement storage silo can be structured to hold no more than a few tons of dry cement product, or be designed to efficiently hold several hundred tons. Generally, larger silos are permanent structures that cannot be moved. These are likely to be found at concrete plants, where the finished product is stored until it is time for shipment. Many building sites that utilize concrete in the construction process opt for portable cement silos that can be moved around the site as the need arises.

Cement powder is commonly made of lime and clay and is a key ingredient of concrete.
Cement powder is commonly made of lime and clay and is a key ingredient of concrete.

It is not unusual for construction companies to keep several portable cement silos available for different building projects. These simple storage devices can usually be set up in a matter of hours, then dismantled once the project is complete. Storage of the portable cement silo is relatively easy, since the components can be stored in a warehouse until the device is needed at another building site.

Both the permanent and the portable cement silo are usually equipped with some type of blower. The blower makes it easier to expel the product from the silo. Blowers are often driven by electricity, although there are models that rely on propane or even gasoline. Blower equipment with the portable silos takes very little time to set up, and can also be stored easily when not in use.

It is important to note that the materials and the design of a cement silo will vary, depending on the type of cement product that is to be stored in the facility. Not all types of building materials are conducive to keeping all of the various components that go into cement blends from caking or absorbing moisture. For example, a silo that is structured to protect the integrity of soda ash may not work as well with lime. Along with the ingredients of the concrete, the configuration of the cement silo will be slightly different for products that are identified as high performance concrete or self-compacting concrete.

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Discussion Comments


Cement silos do not store concrete; cement silos store cement, which is a constituent material in concrete.


My dad had to get a cement silo for a construction job his general construction company was working on. Rather than buy one new, he decided to look for a used cement silo.

He found a flat bottom galvanized steel silo for cement. Even used it had a huge price tag! It had to be ordered from over seas and took almost two months. It was a good thing he ordered the cement silo way before they needed to start pouring cement.


I had no idea how many cement silo manufacturers exported their products. I bet it would cost a lot to ship one! It’s not like you can just slap a fed ex label on it or have your postal worker pick it up.

Cement silos are exported out of China, Egypt, and Turkey just to name a few places. If you are living in the United States and buy a silo from the States, it can still cost a few thousand dollars to have it delivered by truck. It seems to me the only way to go is to find a local manufacturer.

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