Frequently Asked Questions About Polished Concrete
Q: How long does new concrete need to cure before polishing?
A newly poured concrete slab will need a minimum of twenty-eight (28) days.
Q: How long does the grinding and polishing process take?
Depending on size, the floor will take approximately two days for every one thousand square feet. Smaller areas will take longer because it is more difficult to get a consistent product in smaller areas with smaller equipment that is needed.
Q: My concrete floor has some chips, cracks and imperfections. How will this be handled?
Chips, cracks and other imperfections will be ground out to clean the area, and then grey filler is poured in. This filler is as strong as concrete and will create a smooth, cleanable surface. Large imperfections will not be made perfect throughout this process. Areas that have been trenched or have floor drains and other structures within the floor will be treated the same way. For areas where objects protrude from the floor, hand grinders and polishers will be used. This will create a less shiny surface than the open areas of the floor. Expect areas with objects protruding to be visibly different or not be as shiny, up to 8” from the object depending on the grade of the floor.
Q: I have expansion joints throughout my floor, are these filled with crack sealer also?
Expansion joints need to expand and contract. The crack filler dries as hard as concrete and does not expand and contract. We use specially formed expansion joint filler that will not affect the performance of your concrete flooring.
Q: How close do you get to the edge of the floor?
Our equipment gets within 1/4” to the edge of the floor. It is important to remember that although the equipment gets almost the entire floor, the edges do not reflect as much light and will appear to not be as polished. The edges are finished to the same grit level as the rest of the floor, but will look visibly different than the rest of the floor. It is also important to remember that areas that have damage will show in the corners and edges more than other areas.
Q: I want a stain to be applied; will the color be consistent throughout the floor?
Concrete stains are translucent; some areas of the floor will absorb more stain and some less. Areas that have had spills or previous sealing or epoxy may look discolored even after the stain is applied. The colors will be darker in some areas and lighter in some, depending on the composition and history of the floor.
Q: How long will my polished concrete floor last?
Concrete is an incredibly durable surface, the floor will last for many years if maintained. The shine that we produce is done by using progressively higher grit pads, not a sealer. Most low-cost concrete companies will come in, level the floor and use a sealer to produce a shine. This ‘sealing’ of the floor will start to dull and lose its luster quickly after normal foot and other traffic start to use the floor. Polishing the floor will produce a long lasting shine with periodic maintenance. Regular cleaning, as well as interim maintenance will ensure your floor lasts for a long time.
Q: Is a polished concrete floor more slippery?
No. Just because a floor is shiny, does not mean it is slippery. Polished concrete floors meet or exceed ADA and OSHA slip coefficient requirements. A clean, well-maintained floor will have greater slip resistance, but a floor that is dirty and not well maintained is prone to slips and falls.
Q: How soon can the floor be walked on after polishing?
Immediately. The floor has no sealers or curing agents that need to sit undisturbed.
Polished concrete has the lowest cost to maintain of any flooring option. Unlike VCT, polished concrete does not need constant stripping, waxing and burnishing. Floor wax on VCT will wear more quickly and will need to be refinished much more frequently. Other flooring options require chemicals to refinish, producing VOC’s. The process of polishing does not require products with high Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs).
Q: Is polished concrete environmentally friendly?
Polished concrete uses very little chemicals during the finishing process. Due to the low cost to maintain, as well as not needing chemical treatments during the refinishing process, a polished concrete floor is LEED compliant.