Grinding and Sealing

What is grind and seal concrete?

Grind and seal flooring is concrete which has a clear coating system installed onto a concrete floor. Grind and seal concrete systems finish your floors so their striking, natural-look can shine through. Unlike other flooring that are applied atop a subfloor, concrete is the substrate itself.

Polished concrete and sealed concrete look nearly identical. Even some contractors may struggle at first to distinguish between the two. However, the shine/finish is achieved completely differently. Grind / sealed concrete floors are less labour and they involve less steps than polished concrete. With sealed concrete, the high gloss is achieved using a high performance sealer. Sealed concrete is a more affordable alternative than polished concrete.

Polished Concrete Floor grinding and sealing

The steps for grind and seal concrete:

  • Grinding the concrete with engineered concrete floor surface grinders to remove any contaminants from the existing slab.

  • Patching cracks and divots in the floor.

  • The concrete may be ground again with finer diamonds to further smooth the floor. If the concrete is soft, porous or free of contaminants, a second pass may not be necessary.

  • Clean the surface properly.

  • If desired, add a stain color. Choose from a wide range of colors.

  • Seal the sealed concrete floor.

Main differences – Polished Concrete vs. Grind and Sealed Concrete

Key differences between concrete polishing vs grind and sealed concrete floors include appearance, durability, and price difference.

1. Appearance

Sometimes, it isn’t easy to spot the difference between polished concrete and sealed concrete. This is because they look nearly identical. Both polished and grind/seal concrete floors can have a matte, satin or gloss appearance.

One difference is that the grind/sealed concrete has a more consistent appearance from one concrete floor to the next. This is because the high-performance sealer is consistent on each application as it is not reliant on the concrete’s profile. This is not the case with polished concrete. With polished concrete, the finished look can vary. This is due to the fact that a different canvas is presented and outside factors can affect the final finish, such as the level of hardness or imperfections.

Stains can be applied to both polished concrete and grind and seal concrete floors.

2. Durability

It is important that your flooring contractor understands your desired level of durability.

Polished concrete has a scratch-resistant finish and doesn’t require much maintenance. It also lasts for decades if properly maintained. The later statement applies for grind and seal concrete as well – if properly maintained.

3. Cost

Concrete polishing is more labour intensive and costs more than grind / seal concrete. If you are interested in a polished concrete floor but you would like a more affordable option, we definitely recommend to consider grind and seal concrete.