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When it comes time to prepare a floor for a coating or resurfacing system a decision must be made as to whether to mechanically prep (grind or shot blast) or chemically prep using an acid wash. Either way, the end result is to provide a clean, sound surface with a rough texture referred to as a concrete surface profile or CSP.
You may be tired of hearing it, but take care and wear your safety gear…eye protection, respirators, and if you are using acid to chemically prep, gloves. If acid comes in contact with your skin, immediately rinse with fresh water. Refer to the product Safety Data Sheet before using any harmful chemical.
Mechanical surface preparation of a concrete slab:
The two most common methods to mechanical prep a concrete surface are grinding and shot blasting.
Grinding requires the use of floor grinders or polishing machines that spin abrasive pads on the surface of the concrete that will remove coatings, old sealers, adhesives, as well as create a scratch pattern and rough texture to which new material can be applied. These machines can be used wet or dry and require vacuuming of either the wet slurry or dry concrete dust created during these processes. The tooling you use on your machines will make a significant difference in the time it takes to complete your floor prep, as well as the final quality of the prepped surface. We carry a diverse selection of high-quality tooling available to get you started.
Shot blasting is a method of surface preparation that uses small beads propelled out of a machine at a high speed. The beads are shot out of the machine, striking the floor and are sucked back into the shot blaster to be reused. This “blasting” creates a sandpaper-like finish that is ideal for a strong adhesion between the existing concrete and new material. Generally, after shot blasting is done the surface is clean and ready for new material with minimal cleanup, thus making shot blasting a very cost-effective floor prep option.
Chemical floor prep utilizes an acid to etch and burn the surface of the concrete, opening the pores of the concretes cream and creating a rough surface that is ideal for new material adhesion. This method involves diluting the acid with water and scrubbing the solution into the slab. The acid will “sizzle” as it reacts with the cement causing it to weaken and eventually dissolve. If muriatic acid is used it will need to be neutralized with baking soda or ammonia and rinsed thoroughly with water (commonly pressure washed). You will also need to protect all plants, grasses, and animals throughout this process. If you’re hesitant to use such a harsh chemical but do not want to sacrifice etching strength try SureCrete’s Super Concrete Renovator or SCR. SCR is an eco-friendly detergent, degreaser, and hydrochloric acid that contains no toxic heavy metals, or ozone-depleting solvents. This acid also does not need to be neutralized, can be rinsed down any drain, and can be used to earn LEED points. Click the link for more information: https://www.surecretedesign.com/product/concrete-cleaner/
Mechanical floor prep is most commonly favored over chemical for a couple of reasons. Mechanical floor prep leaves a better surface profile which will increase adhesion between the existing slab and new material. Mechanical prep removes coatings, glues, thin set, etc. without introducing strippers or emulsifiers that may interfere with the bond between the slab and the new material. Mechanical prep can be done dry which is better when applying coatings that are sensitive to moisture, such as epoxy.
Mechanical prep is not always possible. There may be a texture that needs to be preserved. In cases such as this, a chemical stripper to remove old coatings plus a chemical etch is required. The EPA recently banned all chemicals that contain methylene chloride to be removed from manufacturing and shelves. Currently, most strippers contain this chemical. We have a new replacement product, FAST STRIP, that is a strong emulsifier, pH neutral, stays wet, contains no solvents, and can be cleaned up with water. FAST STRIP will remove VCT glue, carpet glue, polyurethane, polyaspartic, water-based epoxy, acrylic, and when diluted FAST STRIP can be used to remove graffiti without damaging the substrate. Emulsified materials can be scrapped up and thrown away with no special treatment. Rinse the surface thoroughly and with clean water. Click on the link for more information: https://selectsurfacesoln.com/cleaning-repair-supplies-in-orlando/
Resurfacing or coating an existing slab can be costly. Deciding how to prep the concrete properly is the first step to having a successful outcome. The Select Surface Team is ready and able to help you make that decision.
Whether you have a painter’s studio in your home used solely for hobby purposes or a commercial space where you teach art students, it’s essential to have the correct flooring in place. After all, this particular environment is prone to spills and stains. Especially if you run a business, you want it to look professional. When it comes to flooring, that creates a challenge. Fortunately, you have an excellent solution with epoxy floors.
Painters and artists use all types of materials when creating “masterpieces.” That means an ordinary flooring system won’t work. Instead, you need something durable, long-lasting, nice to look at, and stain-resistant. Epoxy floors offer all those characteristics, making it a perfect choice for this type of environment.
You’ll discover an array of advantages when using epoxy floors in your painter’s studio. For one thing, you can choose from a broad range of colors, textures, and patterns. That allows you to turn an already creative environment into something even more extraordinary. You, as well as your pupils, will enjoy spending time in the studio with the design elements helping to inspire.
Something else to consider is that epoxy floors don’t cause muscle fatigue like a lot of other flooring systems tend to do. With an almost cushion-like surface, you can walk around and stand for a long time without ending up with sore muscles. As a result, you can paint longer without worrying about back, neck, or leg pain.
Then there’s the maintenance aspect of epoxy floors to consider. Of course, if you drop paint, you’ll want to clean it up as quickly as possible. However, you can keep your studio looking great with sweeping and mopping as needed. For more stubborn areas, the installer can recommend a commercial cleaning product.
As an artistic person, you have the opportunity to design a stunning painter’s studio using epoxy floors. With so many benefits, this option makes the most sense.
According to recent statistics, approximately eight million people in the United States alone now work from home full-time. That number isn’t counting others who split their working hours between a home and business office. Not only is it important to have the right setup as far as furniture, equipment, and storage, but also a comfortable environment. One way to accomplish that is by choosing stained concrete floors.
Especially if you have a home office where you visit with potential and current clients, you want to present yourself and your business in the best light possible. The floor serves as the foundation on which to create everything else. For that reason, you want to start by focusing on the right flooring system. Sure, you have many other options, but stained concrete will give your home office a distinct look of sophistication and professionalism.
For this, you have two possibilities. The first is a water-based product. While there’s nothing wrong with this choice, if your goal is to make your office more sophisticated, you might want to focus primarily on the second option – an acid-based product. With this stained concrete application, the results will surpass your expectations.
One benefit of choosing an acid stained concrete floor has to do with color. You can select from a broad range of options, with the majority of them in more vibrant hues. However, what makes an acid-stained flooring system unique is that there are no two alike. The reason is that the acid penetrates the concrete surface where it reacts to specific compounds. With that, you’ll end up with a marbled effect that no one can duplicate.
Beyond beautiful colors and designs, a stained concrete floor is easy to maintain. You can keep your home office in tip-top shape while investing very little time. This flooring system is also durable, long-lasting, and resistant to stains. Turn your home office into a space that both you and your clients enjoy.
Whether an individual decides to complete a project or hires a professional for the job, the type of decorative concrete tools used in the project makes a difference in the outcome. Substituting even one tool can completely change the surface and may not be in a good way. Fortunately, one of the top companies in Orlando that does this type of work also supplies tools.
The exact type of decorative concrete tools used depends on the project. For instance, the person doing the work would rely on different things when applying an epoxy overlay versus stamped concrete. Regardless, the following are the tools considered the most important.
- Monitoring Moisture Content – When working with decorative solutions, especially in Orlando, it’s vital to keep track of the moisture in the concrete. The reason is that some products have a high sensitivity level to relative humidity. For an exceptional outcome, an RH moisture probe is essential.
- Perfect Edging – Many experts now have a special tool for edging as one of the essential decorative concrete tools they use. This makes polishing edges just as easy as diamond polishing the center of a floor.
- Trowel – Even something as simple as a trowel has a significant impact on the completed work. To achieve a smooth and dense surface, trowels are commonly used after the floating process. With this, a homeowner or installer can finish the job without walking on the concrete surface.
- Stamping Mats – To create a textured surface that resembles wood, brick, slate, rock, and so on, installers use stamping mats. For this, homeowners can choose from a standard template or have an expert make a custom design. These mats go onto the surface. By applying pressure, they transform plain concrete into a surface with a beautiful design.
- Groover – Another one of the most critical decorative concrete tools is the groover. In addition to creating grooves, this helps protect areas where cracks might form because of weather changes or shrinkage.
After living in your Orlando home for a long time, you recognize the floors need updating. However, the last thing you want is to choose a design that all your friends and family have. Instead, you want something unique and memorable. Without question, epoxy floor systems are a perfect solution. With this, you can go with something subtle or unleash your creativity.
Some of the ways you can incorporate epoxy floor systems in and around your Orlando home include the following:
- Foyer – The floors in your foyer are the first thing that people see when visiting. Using epoxy, you can make a lasting impression from the very beginning. Along with the main floor area, you might consider changing the look of the stairs as well. With an abundance of color options, this is an excellent way to wow people.
- Hearth Room – This room in the house is where people love to congregate. Whether this includes family members or friends, you want a hearth room that looks and feels cozy. Thanks to epoxy floor systems, you can achieve your goal. If you have a home in Orlando near the water, you might consider a lighter color whereas, for a more traditional house, you could go with deeper and richer hues.
- Kitchen – Besides the hearth room, the kitchen sees a lot of activity. Using epoxy floor systems, not only can you change the way this room looks but also how it functions. By having aggregates added, you end up with a slip-resistant surface. Considering that people accidentally spill things, this eliminates risk.
- Patio – With the right epoxy floor systems, you can even transform your outdoor patio. For something extraordinary, you could have a professional installer change the look of the walls, fireplace surrounds, fire pit, water feature, and even concrete furniture by using a stamped decorative solution. This, combined with an epoxy floor system, will make your patio become everyone’s favorite place to relax.