The Evolution of Polished Concrete Floors

Renaissance in Concrete Flooring

With the advent of a number of new products that are beneficial to both flooring contractors and customers, polished concrete floors have grown tremendously in popularity in the last few years.

From a simple scrubbing and sealing flooring solution to grinding, coloring and polishing, polished concrete floors have come a long way from its origin. Many products are available that work for LEED points and promote virtually zero percentage waste. Most of the contractors use UV-stable colorants in order to harden and densify concrete.

Densifiers

Continuous innovations are taking place in the concrete floor industry, and densifier isn't an exception. Ideally, manufacturers recommend these products as hardeners. Densifier has several benefits; it hardens the surface, prevents surface dust, and most interestingly, increases slip-resistance.

Potassium- and sodium-silicate densifiers have been a trademark for high durability concrete floor for over 70 years now. Application method varies based on the product. Flooring contractors spray, brush or roll the densifier on concrete, and then rub it so it can penetrate in concrete properly. Amount of liquid densifiers that couldn't penetrate in concrete should be removed immediately before it creates solid white deposit.

Growing environmental awareness has integrated some more steps, like containment, collection, and standard disposal of waste via flushing, in the concrete floor making process. These newly added steps have considerably improved stain resistance, abrasion resistance and dust prevention in concrete floors.

The 21st century has made communication easier, faster and streamlined, and densifiers too are not left behind!

Lithium-silicate densifiers were introduced in the industry a few years ago. Today, they hold a significant place in the market as they meet the demand of faster construction agenda.

These densifiers work same as their predecessor sodium- and potassium-silicate. They get through concrete pores and recoil with soft calcium hydroxide in the concrete escaped from curing, which forms hard calcium silicate hydrate — it is the same thing that makes cured concrete hard to start out with.

Polished Concrete

It was once confined to stone and terrazzo industries only. But today it is widely used in residential, public sector and commercial buildings. With lithium-silicate densifiers that blot out the need of scrubbing, flushing and waste, polished concrete floors have become a more sensible choice for both contractors and consumers.

From gigantic stores like Wal-Mart and corporate offices, schools, hospitals, churches and residents, polished concrete floors are everywhere. High-tech concrete floor polishing equipment is used to make concrete surface shine and gleam. Such equipment is available on rent and sale with attractive prices in online stores. However, polishing concrete floor isn't a piece of cake. It needs specific skills and experience to use such equipment. Thus, it is recommended that you hire a good flooring contractor.

Lowest Maintenance - Key to Success

Certainly polished concrete floors require periodic maintenance like other flooring solutions, but the techniques used to clean these floors are the cheapest methods possible. Moreover, these floors last longer, at-least 20 years. A great variety of colors and designs are also some of the reasons why polished concrete floors have gained so much popularity today.

The concrete flooring industry is evolving fast and is set to reach its full potential.

 

[May 7, 2013]