What is an acceptable surface to be resurfaced?The underlying concrete for a resurfacing project must be sound. It is not feasible to resurface concrete that is heaving, has severe cracks, or is damaged due to freeze/thaw damage. Resurfacing will not solve underlying soil problems. Small plastics shrinkage, cracks, or crazing cracks can be covered by the polymer prime coat and base coat of the resurfacing material. Another way of "fixing" nonstructural cracks, such as shrinkage cracks, is to route the crack out with a crack chaser (or a saw or angle grinder) and fill it with a sealant.
What is the most important factor in concrete resurfacing?A properly prepared concrete substrate is the most important factor in concrete resurfacing. Here is an overview of the steps involved:
- Cleaning the concrete: methods vary depending on the condition of the existing concrete.
- Repairing the cracks
- Profiling the concrete to give it enough "grab" to bond with the resurfacing bond coat.
- At this point, the resurfacing process starts.
Is decorative concrete maintenance free?No type of flooring material is truly "maintenance-free," no matter what the manufacturer may claim. While concrete floors are relatively easy to maintain, compared with other types of floor surfaces, they aren't completely maintenance-free. How much maintenance your floor will need largely depends on the amount of traffic it receives. The maintenance needs of a residential floor will be much different than the maintenance for a floor in a high-traffic commercial or retail environment.
- In most cases, residential concrete floors experience light foot traffic, and a simple cleaning regimen of occasional sweeping and damp mopping will keep concrete floors looking like new for many years.
- When protected with a good sealer and a coat of floor finish or wax, concrete floors are highly resistant to staining, chemicals, and abrasion.
- If your concrete floor ever loses its luster or shine, cleaning of the floor and reapplying a coat or two of floor finish will normally bring it back to its original state. In a non-aggressive environment such as a home, it's not uncommon to have a year or more go by with just light maintenance before it's necessary to buff and refinish the floor.
- In areas of heavy traffic, such as entrances and foyers, you can reduce maintenance and wear and tear by using floor mats both inside and outside of the entryways.
Are concrete floors slippery?They can be, especially when wet, but no more so than vinyl, linoleum, marble, or ceramic tile floors.
- Application of a high-gloss sealer to protect and enhance decorative concrete may reduce traction somewhat, but that's easily remedied by mixing a nonslip additive into the stain or sealer before application.
- Kept clean and dry, polished concrete floors are generally no slicker than plain concrete surfaces, and they tend to be less slippery than waxed linoleum or polished marble.
How long does concrete flooring last?The life expectancy of a concrete floor will far surpass that of most floor covering materials. That means in the long run you can save money because you'll never need to rip out and replace worn or damaged flooring.
Many flooring options are initially cheaper than decorative concrete, but concrete will last longer and eventually give you a better return on your investment. The cost of a concrete floor over a lifetime can be comparable or even lower than other high-end flooring materials. Concrete floors rarely, if ever, need replacement, especially if properly installed and maintained.
Are decorative concrete floors expensive?The initial outlay for decorative concrete may exceed the cost of a low- to mid-priced floor covering, such as carpeting, vinyl tile, and wood laminates. When compared with high-end floor coverings, such as ceramic tile, slate, and marble, decorative concrete is often an economical alternative. Plus, skilled concrete artisans can duplicate the look of these pricier materials.
Do overlays and colored concrete fade?Cleaning and sealing overlays and colored concrete should be done regularly, just like any other home maintenance. The frequency will depend on how often the surface is exposed to cars, foot traffic, water, and any chemicals. We recommend resealing every 2 or 3 years. If you wait for longer, you may notice the color fade slightly, but just like waxing a car, resealing your concrete will return it to the vibrancy of the day, it was installed.
Tips for Hiring a Contractor
- Check for references.
- Check with licensing authorities.
- Check with the Better Business Bureau
You Pay for Quality when Hiring a Contractor
Avoid getting caught in the low-bidding trap when choosing a contractor.
- Get bids from several contractors.
- Be wary of going with the lowest bid. Top-quality work requires a lot of skill, labor, and artistic talent, which can all add to the final installation cost.
- Remember, you get what you pay for.
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