Gone are the days when concrete floors were sort of drab and not very impressive. Today’s concrete floors have taken on a whole new life and can give an area a luxurious look. This is because new dyes and paints and new techniques treat the surface, giving you many options for design and color, as well as texture. Earthy colors are popular for concrete and easy to match with furniture designs and wall colors. New textures can give a look similar to ceramics, brick or natural stone.
Alongside of this, concrete floors have always had several advantages over other types of flooring. It’s less costly than almost any other type of flooring. If roads and pavements are made out of concrete, then obviously its durability is undeniable.
Eventually, you will want or need to polish a concrete floor to revive it, give it shine and restore it. If you’re a type of DIY person, note that it can get expensive to rent a grinder, not to mention other tools you would need, such as, diamonds which are grazed metals, disks, pads, measuring tools to check the hardness of the flooring, just to mention a few. So for many of us, it’s nice to let the pros take over while we just enjoy the results. But before polishing, here are the 7 things to consider first.
How hard the flooring is
It’s established that concrete floors are hard, but you still need to know how hard it is, since some types aren’t as hard as others. Hardness here refers to the grinding process. This factor is maybe the most important thing to know because the polishing that will happen after that and the tools that will be used will depend on it. Some flooring is made from soft concrete, which is different than hard concrete and creates very abrasive dust when grinded. Hard concrete creates a very fine dust during grinding. The disks and grinders used are chosen based on this factor of hardness. So if you’re not using the proper tools and machinery, not only will it wear down some tools too quickly, but will also probably not get the results you want.
Polishing over a cracked floor would be a waste of time, effort, and money. You need to polish over a clean, crack-free surface. Concrete, in general, despite its durability is prone to cracking and chipping. So you need to go over the entire area that will be polished and see where those cracks are so they can be sealed. Sealing the cracks is done in order to give the floor as near as possible a flawless texture. Some damages on concrete are more than cracks, especially in outdoor areas, commercial areas, and any area that undergoes extensive traffic. Other cracks are hairline, and may not even need work to be done on them as they only affect the surface, without causing damage to anything underneath.
Because of the advancement in polishing concrete, some concrete floors can fool you into thinking they are marble or granite. Some choices you can have would be stained polished concrete, which would allow you to add color to the floor. Another choice is dyed polished concrete, which makes colors more vibrant and often used together with stained concrete. For a more customized look, glass, nails and bolts can be seeded into the top layer of the mix then polished smoothly. This can give an interesting design pattern to the floor. For industrial areas, a good polish on gray concrete slabs might be all you need to give the flooring a lustrous shine.
Cost is often the first thing people ask about. You need to get a quote before committing to any one company. According to this article from ConcreteFloorPolisher.co.uk, there are several factors that affect the cost of your polished concrete project. This will vary depending on how large the area is to be polished, the amount of pre-work that would need to be done on the floor first, the type of surface finishing you are looking for, among other factors. A basic polish is not that costly and will get you a nice surface, but paying a bit more will give you more options in design and surface colors.
How long does it take?
Again, this varies according to how large the area is and what type of polishing you will settle on. You should be prepared to not use the area or areas for a couple of days. Yet, once done, you can use it immediately. You will be doing yourself a big favor and save time by clearing out all obstacles in the way before any work begins. Keep in mind that polishing concrete uses large and heavy machinery that takes up room.
Can all concrete floorings be polished?
The short answer is yes. Whether your flooring is new or old it can be polished. In extreme cases, some floors might not be the best candidate for polishing due to extreme waviness of the floor or extremely porous which allows the passing of water or liquid. These types of floors can still be polished, but the amount of pre-work to be done on them will increase the cost. An experienced company will tell you.
How often can you polish?
With proper maintenance of a newly polished floor, there’s no reason why it can’t remain as good as it was from day one for a very long time. But because of its durability and strength, people often abuse the floor using harsh chemicals and brushes to clean it. Also, not cleaning at all can ruin it prematurely. The key is to do away with daily grime without using harsh chemicals.
With its durability, strength and evolving designs and colors, a polished concrete floor is an excellent choice whether for your residence, work or industrial area. New advances and polishing techniques can change a boring concrete floor to a stage. Atop that, it’s low maintenance, making it a very suitable choice for outdoors and indoors.