Polished Concrete Floors
Is a polished concrete floor expensive?
The cost of Polished concrete floor can vary a lot, depending on many different factors. However, one of the biggest advantages polished concrete floors have over the alternatives, is the value for investment, provided over the life of your floor. Some of the factors that add to this value include:
High Durability. Polished concrete flooring is extremely strong and resilient. It is able to withstand the pressure from very heavy foot traffic and equipment. It is very difficult to damage and is almost impossible to chip or scratch.
Life-Span. A properly installed, sealed and maintained polished concrete floor can be expected to last a hundred years or more in even the harshest commercial environments. By choosing polished concrete, in the long run you can save money as you won’t have to remove and replace worn or damaged flooring.
Cost-Effective. A polished concrete floor’s cost changes with the added factors and features. Most installations are cost-effective, especially if you have an existing concrete slab that is ready for staining, polishing or a decorative coating or overlay. The price savings doesn’t always come at installation, but over its lifetime, especially if you factor in maintenance costs.
Are polished concrete floors good?
Polished concrete floors have been used for years and are a great option for most scenarios. Some advantages include:
Easy to maintain. Polished concrete flooring is easy to maintain. You just have to brush daily to prevent dirt accumulation. You should also damp mop it weekly to remove smudging, and restore gloss. Depending on your polished concrete floor finish, you may have additional maintenance requirements.
Many Design Options. There is an endless variety of colour and texture effects. You can imitate the look of different pricier materials. You can also add decorative engraving and stenciled graphics into the surface.
Sanitary. Properly finished and sealed concrete can be resistant to fluids. Coatings can provide waterproof barriers. Some coatings can also provide anti-microbial protection.
Slip-Resistant. Polished concrete can be finished to any slip resistance that you require. It can be sealed with a non-slip epoxy coating to add texture and prevent falls and injuries.
Polished concrete is a multi-step process where a concrete floor is mechanically ground, honed and polished with bonded abrasives in order to cut a concrete floor’s surface. It is then refined with each cut in order to achieve a specified level of appearance.
This process also includes the use of a penetrant chemical known as a hardener. The concrete densifier/hardener penetrates into the concrete and creates a chemical reaction to help harden and dust-proof the surface. During concrete polishing, the surface is processed through a series of steps (in general a minimum of four grinding steps of processing is considered polished concrete) utilizing progressively finer grinding tools. The grinding tools are progressive grits of industrial diamonds in a bonded material such as metal/hybrid/resin often referred to as diamond polishing pads. Concrete is not considered polished before 1600 grit, and it is normally finished to either the 1600 or 3000+ grit level. Dyes designed for concrete polishing are often applied to add colour to polished concrete. Any grinding under 1600 grit is considered a honed floor.