When you install concrete flooring (for living rooms, offices, etc.), you need to understand that it’s not simply a matter of laying down some concrete and calling it a day. Achieving the maximum quality on concrete flooring and the coatings you’ll install after requires meticulous preparation to avoid problems down the road.
This post will dive into some of the fundamental processes of concrete floor preparation and the importance of preparing your concrete flooring before any other overlays or other flooring options.
What Is Concrete?
Concrete is a material that consists of cement (10% to 15%), aggregates (sand or gravel, at least 65%), and water.
When mixed in the right proportions of its constituent materials, concrete forms a solid substance that construction professionals pour on top of an existing rough surface or use as an infill between other materials, such as wood or metal.
What Does Concrete Flooring Preparation Entail?
Preparing concrete flooring for flooring materials follows a specific set of guidelines.
Removal of Dirt and Other Substances
The basic preparation of a concrete surface involves removing dirt, debris, efflorescence, and other contaminants from the surface. In most cases, flooring experts do this by:
- Pressure washing
- Shot blasting
- Mechanical grinding
- Chemical etching
These processes make concrete flooring porous enough to accept new concrete coatings.
Broom-finished concrete is sufficiently porous to accept a penetrating sealer. However, machine-troweled substrates need additional pressure washing or acid etching (followed by neutralization) and other processes to readily enable the floor to accept a sealer application.
Application of Sealer
The next step in preparing concrete flooring is applying a sealer using a brush or paint roller. This sealer prepares the concrete floor for the application of finish coatings or stains, enabling better adhesion and protecting the concrete floor from corrosive elements.
Sealers are available in solvent-based and water-based formulas.
Next comes sanding, which removes any excess sealer. This step prepares the concrete flooring to apply durable polyurethane bases and protective polyaspartic top coats.
Why Is Concrete Flooring Preparation So Important?
Preparation is vital if you want a solid, long-lasting polished concrete floor. Without proper preparation, the finished product will be less durable and more prone to damage from water, chemicals, and other sources of wear.
Some reasons why concrete flooring preparation is essential before laying a new floor include the following:
It Degreases the Floor for Better Coating Adhesion and Curing
Not removing all the grease and oil from your concrete floor surface will prevent your new coating from adhering and curing correctly. The coatings will either not cure correctly or flake off, causing a safety hazard in high-traffic areas. This is because oil doesn’t bond well with other materials.
It Removes Loose Debris for Better Coating Adhesion
When preparing concrete flooring for subsequent coating, you must remove any loose debris from the top layer of the concrete. This will ensure that the coatings adhere properly to the surface and last longer.
Sanding and wire brushing are two methods flooring experts use to remove loose debris from a concrete floor.
It Removes Damaging Curing Compounds and Hardeners
Power grinding and shot blasting are some of the most effective methods when preparing concrete floors for new floor coverings. By removing curing membranes, hardeners, and loose matter from the surface of concrete floor slabs, you can ensure that your floor will be ready for installation.
It Reveals a Fresh Substrate for New Flooring Installations
Several processes are essential for this purpose, including scarifiers and scabblers. These processes remove the top layer of concrete to expose a fresh, clean surface, making it easier for concrete coatings adhesion.
Get a Free Quote for Concrete Coatings Installation in Ankeny, IA, Today!
If you’re looking for concrete coatings in Ankeny, IA, Revival Concrete Coatings is the company to call. We specialize in providing top-of-the-line patio, pool deck, garage floor, basement, and commercial concrete coatings.
Our products are sure to meet your expectations. We provide polyurea and polyaspartic penntek flooring installations with a lifetime warranty on UV stability and a 15-year manufacturer warranty on chipping and peeling.
Our team of experts will work with you to determine the best product for your project and guide you through the process so that your new coating looks great for years to come!
We offer free estimates and expert advice on all of our concrete flooring products, so you can know what you’ll get before committing. Contact us at (515) 850-7192 for a free estimate on your next project!