Restoring Concrete with Onfloor
At Onfloor, we know that restoring old concrete floors can be quite the undertaking. Having the right equipment for the job is just as important as having the necessary knowledge. Whether you or someone else has been contracted to do the job, we can help you with your concrete restoration needs. From restoring old garage floors to wood deck restorations, we offer concrete floor sanders, grinders and polishers that offer multiple speeds for a slew of different applications. What should you know before you start restoring an old concrete floor?
Typically, very old concrete floors have been compromised or covered with various materials. This can range from paint, epoxy, tile and glue, to different layers of wood and concrete. If the existing material and adhesive is not removed properly, a brand new overlay will not set well, which will waste your time and money. If your space has been used as a garage or as a workshop, there is a good chance that the concrete will have small pits or holes. Filling these pits with quick-set concrete using a trowel will usually do the job. Let this dry for a few hours before sweeping or vacuuming the floor for prep. We are all about doing things efficiently and offer a number of products to get the job done. For example, our DynaVac series will make quick work out of concrete dust and other contaminants.
Concrete Floor Grinding
After the concrete has set and the dust has been vacuumed up, it is necessary to properly prepare the floor before laying an epoxy or other coating. This will help make the floor look more uniform and professional but more importantly, it will provide the necessary surface for the coating to adhere properly. If you have rust stains, combining an ounce of trisodium phosphate (TSP) in a gallon of hot water can also help remove them prior to grinding. Let the solution set for 15 minutes in case you choose to use this method. Grinding is the preferred method of cleaning and prepping for most professional installers after all stains, cracks and sealers have been removed.
Many garages will have a water-tight sealer. This sealer will need to be removed. We recommend the OF16S-H for garage floor preparation. It’s a high-speed, 120V power machine, which allows it to remove even the toughest sealers, glues and mastics. The machine is easy to use and the high tool speed allows it to achieve production rates as high as 300 square feet per hour. The general rule of thumb is to start with a larger sized grit (16 or 25 grit) for the grinding diamond.
Concrete Dust Vacuuming
After the prep and grinding are finished, having a concrete dust vacuum on hand is a quick and convenient solution to large messes. Our DynaVac can help you clean up dust and debris from sanding, cutting and grinding to keep you and your workers safe from potential breathing hazards. If you’re a licensed contractor, having a clean and safe workplace all the way to completion can set you apart from the competition. Rather than hire a cleaning company, using our DynaVac will pay for itself over time. With an advanced filtration system and an 11-gallon collection bin, it is suitable for most residential and commercial sized jobs.
Finishing the Job
Once the old surface material has been removed and the concrete has been prepared, it’s time to move onto the next step. Choosing the right coating is largely dependent on what you want to do with the space. There are different concrete dyes and concrete sealers that can make your floor look brand new. These sealers can also have different purposes and many are used only for their function.
For example, film-forming sealers are recommended for garage floors, as they repel stubborn oil and grease stains. However, a polished concrete floor in the living room would not require such a specialized sealer. In our next article, we’ll talk about choosing the right sealer for your concrete restoration job. Contact us today if you need help or have questions about restoring old concrete!