The range of flooring options available in today’s marketplace is vast, with each of these alternatives offering unique appearance and performance characteristics. As a result, owners and design professionals must evaluate many factors to determine the best flooring option for a structure’s given needs and environment.
Concrete is a durable material, and thus meets an important sustainable-design criterion. In addition, the polishing process enhances concrete’s natural appeal. These attributes have contributed to the increased use of polished concrete in public and institutional buildings such as schools, hospitals, retail stores, restaurants, and other settings.
Besides being durable, clients similarly enjoy another benefit by opting for this particular flooring system solution: they are able to save money. That is because they don’t even have to purchase and have another material installed in their spaces if they want to achieve a polished concrete appearance on their floor.
- Durability. Polished concrete floors are heavy-duty. Resilient flooring system is a must because the floor itself is subjected to a lot of traffic and wear throughout the entire lifespan of any structure.
- Visually Appealing Space. Apart from being functional and tough, this flooring system solution also allows you to improve the physical appearance of any space. Once polished, the luster and beauty of concrete are revealed. As a result, you are able to achieve the sleek look of a natural stone floor without even installing real stones on the floor!
- Flexibility. Residential and commercial requirements can be satisfied by this solution. Clients are even given the option to choose the level of sheen (i.e. satin or high-gloss finish, etc.) they prefer.
There are various applications for this flooring as it can be considered to effectively address residential as well as commercial flooring system requirements.
Any concrete floor can be polished subjected to certain conditions. Then again, it is important to note that not all concrete floors are created equal. The amounts of preparation that they require vary. Certain floors require more preparation than the others. The kind of surface preparation done on most floors involves the removal of dirt, grease and minor blemishes.
Since there are different levels of sheen for this type of flooring system, we are here to guide our clients to determine the most ideal solution for their case by factoring in their maintenance considerations and aesthetic concerns besides their other flooring design requirements.
Dry or wet process – With dry polished concrete, vacuums are used to extract dust; with wet polished concrete, wet slurry is used to remove concrete particles. The wet-grinding process requires special disposal methods.
A true grinding and polishing system requires a process consisting of 5 to 10 steps, depending on the desired shine of the floor and its original condition. Assessing the condition of the concrete requires on-site analysis, general knowledge of concrete and mix design, and diagnosis of hardness, porosity and aggregate types.
Grinding and Polishing techniques are divided into two categories: Those employing metal-bonded diamonds (16 to 150 grit) that are used in the initial grinding or preparation phase, and resin-bonded diamond segments (100 to 3000 grit) that are used in the subsequent polishing phases. Metal bonded diamonds are more aggressive in their effect on the concrete substrate than resin-bonded diamond segments.
Densifying and Hardening – Once the metal bonded diamond phase and prep is complete, the densification process begins. This key step plays a central part in achieving longevity of the shine and high level of performance of the finished floor. Densification results in a water, stain and chemical resistant surface,
Levels of shine – Attaining the desired level of shine depends on the number of passes of the diamond disc grinder, as each step increasingly flattens the floor and enhances light reflectivity. Polishing systems that require minimal process steps – less than five – do not constitute a true grinding and polishing system, which involves a five to ten step process, including the hardening and densification application.
Call us today to discuss your concrete polishing needs and receive a no obligation estimate.