Concrete forms typically are a foundation contractor's most valuable equipment investment. They form the backbone of virtually every concrete pour, whether large or small. With the costs of forming accounting for up to half the value of a typical cast-in-place concrete structure, you'll want to ensure that the forms, as a capital asset, perform for as many pours as possible.

To prolong the life of both plywood and aluminum foundation forms, you should train crews to prepare the forms properly for first use, handle them with care, use the right release agent, and keep the forms clean and free of concrete buildup.