No material lasts forever. A strong coating, routine maintenance, moisture prevention – these can all help the longevity of your concrete surface. But over time, foot traffic and general wear and tear can still cause degradation of even the highest-quality concrete application.
At Runyon Surface Prep, we provide contractors and businesses with a wide range of concrete surface preparation equipment and accessories. This post will cover common concrete surface damages and what you can do to refresh yours and get it looking as good as new.
The Ways That Concrete Becomes Damaged Over Time
Depending on the commercial industry or residential space, concrete surfaces see a variety of influences that can affect their overall condition. These often include:
- Heavy machinery
- Oils and chemicals
- Weather-related elements
- Lack of floor protection (rugs, mats, etc.)
- Excess moisture
- Poor maintenance
Sometimes these factors simply wear down the polish and coating, other times they can create grooves, scrapes, and various-sized craters in the concrete.
Remove Your Coating or Sealant
After cleaning your surface, your first official step in giving your concrete that refreshing shine will be the removal of the sealant and any installed coatings.
Removal of these elements can be a relatively simple process or a lengthy process, it all depends on factors like surface area and maneuverability. There are two primary ways to remove concrete coatings/sealant: mechanical and chemical. For the sake of this post, we’ll cover the mechanical removal of coating and sealant
The best equipment for mechanical concrete coating removal is a planetary floor grinder with diamond-tipped tooling. Depending on your attachment, the surface of the concrete will be removed by fractions of an inch – or just enough to break up the sealant or remove the coating.
Apply Structural Solutions to Your Concrete Surface
Structural wear and tear and outright damage can be fixed with concrete repair mixes, typically for craters or cracks up to 4” in depth or width. If you’re dealing with leveling issues, you can also use a concrete shaver to shave the protruding concrete surface and level out the sidewalk or flooring. Runyon carries Von Arx brand shavers that grind off unnecessary surface protrusions.
If your craters and cracks are abundant and causing significant hazards to workers or guests, you may want to consider a full concrete reinstallation on some or all of your surface.
Install New Coating or Polish as Necessary
Once your repairs are done and the surface is prepped and ready, it’s time to re-seal and add a fresh layer of your chosen stain or coating. This step is where you truly have the opportunity to provide commercial or residential spaces with a fresh tone fit for the situation, and it can make or break your relationship with property owners.
Commercial property owners will want to keep up with their branding palette, for example, and homeowners with modern flooring designs. Do a little research and see what’s in style so you can stay up on your game.
What Coating Types Are Available?
Concrete coating types Runyon carries include:
- Epoxy coating
- Polyurethane protective coating
- Polyaspartic coating
Don’t forget you can bring additives to your surface as well. Decorative aggregates like Terrazzo glass chips and anti-slip additives can boost the surface’s beauty and functionality.
Best Ways to Polish
The final step in the surface facelift is polishing to a glorious shine. This can be done with fine-grit grinders, buffers, and even power trowels. Yes, power trowels – if you hadn’t heard, these aren’t just for troweling anymore. Trowels may be tailored to do some light grind and polishing work. So if your surface prep involves troweling and polishing, you can leave your heavy-duty grinder at home. And with a magnetic preload separator, you can easily switch out your tooling attachments.
Wet polishing is another option. Wet polishing, the former standard in surface prep, is a safer means of polishing that combats silica dust concerns. Consider approaching your project with the wet mechanical method.
Use Quality Concrete Surface Equipment and Accessories
A thorough surface refresh job starts with quality equipment. From cleaning to removal and final polishing, Runyon Surface Prep has everything you need to get the job done. The longevity of our concrete equipment and our custom solutions also lend well to rental company inventory needs – we should know, we rent out our equipment!
Learn more with a call or connect with us today.