Power Roller Screed Vs. Vibrating Screed: How To Choose

Are you confused about how to choose between a power roller screed and a vibrating screed? Or are you wondering what the difference is between the two? In this article, we will give you a detailed introduction to their differences and their suitable areas.

power roller screed vs vinrating screed

Do You Know Them

What Is Power Roller Screed

Power roller screed has a variety of power options, including electric, engine, lithium battery, and hydraulic. It compacts the concrete by driving a rotating roller tube. The roller tube rotates in the opposite direction of the pull, pushing the excess concrete forward. The aggregates in the concrete are not fully vibrated down, resulting in a stronger and more durable concrete surface.

What Is Vibrating Screed

Vibrating screed is a range of products, including laser screed, power screed, truss screed and other types concrete screed machines. It scrapes the concrete flat through the board and through vibration to complete the compaction and slurry lifting work.

Vibrating Screed Feature

  • The weight is relatively heavy.
  • The width cannot be changed as needed (except truss screed, which can be changed as needed)
  • High labor intensity during operation
  • It cannot be used for the large slope of concrete works
  • The function is single and cannot be extended.
  • For concrete with a low slump, the vibration must be carried out.

Power Roller Screed Feature

  • No vibrating noise
  • Easy to use, the low labor intensity of the operator.
  • Screed rollers can be used for the large slope of concrete construction.
  • Good at pervious concrete construction
  • Fitted with a variety of drum forms, it is a very user-friendly curb roller screed that can be used in a variety of road edges and drain construction.

Do you need thses machines?

We provide high quality roller screed and vibrating screed to concrete contractors worldwide. Not only are these machines of great quality, also offer you a great price.

In the table below, we will compare some differences between roller screed and vibrating screed in detail.

roller screed vs vibrating screed

Roller ScreedVibrating Screed
Working Width1-10m1-3m [*1]
Screed Type5mm Aviation Aluminum Buttable Roller TubeDouble / Single Layer Aviation Aluminum Screed Plate
PortabilityVery PortablePortable
Vibration ForceNo Vibration Force [*2]Have Vibration Force
Operation ModeStand UpBend Down
Number Of Operators21
Applied rangeAll kind of concrete leveling projects (need and not need vibrating) , and concrete slope, permeable concrete, conical concrete surface and funnel-shaped concrete surface.Concrete leveling projects that need vibrating / Better for some small area concrete slab projects that need vibrating.

*1 It is not recommended to use a screed plate exceeding 3m. Because the vibrating power screed relies on the vibrating force to compact the concrete, When the working width exceeds 3m, the vibrating force on its sides will be insufficient and will not have a good compaction effect. In addition, the power screed has one operator who has to bend down to operate it. When the width of the vibrating plate is wider than 3m, it will be very difficult for the operator to move it.

*2 The concrete vibrator can be used to vibrate the concrete alone, and the effect is better, so the screed roller can level the concrete that needs to be vibrated.

How To Choose

We can judge the use of roller screed or vibrating screed depending on the concrete slump:

When To Use a Vibrating Screed

According to the portland cement association, a vibrating concrete screed is more suitable when the concrete has a slump of 3 inches or less. However, this does not mean that you cannot use a roller screed to level this concrete. You can also use a concrete vibrator to vibrate the concrete first and then use a roller screed to level it. Because roller screed is easy to operate, this could reduce labor intensity.

When To Use a Roller Screed

Concrete with a slump of more than 3 inches should use a power roller screed, which helps get a more durable concrete surface.

damaged concrete floor

Many concrete floors constructed with vibrating screed will fall off and not be durable. This is because, except for some high-strength bridge decks and special concrete structures, most of the concrete slab construction using concrete slump are no more than 3 inches. In many cases, concrete vibrating is excessive. This causes the aggregate is vibrated deep, excess water and cement will be carried out, and the concrete surface will become less reliable.

Some Special Uses

Vibrating Screed

  • As we have mentioned above, some hard concrete with low slump can only use vibrating screed. For example, some bridge pavements construction can achieve a better effect and faster construction speed.
  • laser screed is also a kind of vibrating screed. It is suitable for a large area of floor construction and can build a super-flat industrial floor.

Power Roller Screed

  • Large slopes can be leveled.
  • It is the best pervious concrete roller screed.
  • Drums can be used for the construction of road edges and curbs.
  • With center connectors, it is easy to level tapered or funnel-shaped concrete floors (e.g., Round barn floors).


In concrete leveling construction, you must choose the right equipment to achieve good results. From the above summary, you can know that unless it is some very viscous concrete, the general leveling project Power Roller Screed is competent. The vibrating screed is suitable for some leveling projects with special needs. Of course, we can’t make that conclusion for all jobs. You have to make that judgment on a case-by-case basis.

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