As an industry professional in a commercial setting, you might find yourself tasked with polishing and beautifying concrete floors somewhat often. This is a relatively simple task, but even so, some professionals still aren’t doing the best job they can.
There is a simple step-by-step process you need to follow if you want to get the perfect polish on your concrete. It involves the obvious grinding and polishing, but you need more than just a good floor grinder if you want to optimize concrete floors to be all they can be.
In order to get you up to speed on concrete floor grinding and polishing let’s take a look at the steps you’ll need to follow, as well as what kind of product you should use on concrete floors.
The basics of concrete floor grinding and polishing
Grinding concrete might sound complicated, but it’s actually a lot like sanding wood. You need a machine designed for grinding down concrete, and it needs to be equipped with abrasives which are diamond segmented. These act as the “sandpaper” for your concrete, and will grind it down to the degree of smoothness and shine that your client desires.
When the concrete floor grinding and polishing job has been completed, it should result in a mirror-like, glossy finish.
There are two main types of concrete floor grinding methods, wet and dry. Dry grinding provides an easier cleanup than wet grinding in most cases, but is harder on the concrete flooring and unless the right product is applied, leaves it with less overall protection for the future. Wet grinding is a messier job and the slurry that’s left behind after grinding either needs to be cleaned up or used in some way.
How to grind and polish a concrete floor
The steps you need to take to grind and polish concrete floors for your clients are as follows;
- Remove any existing coatings on the concrete. You can use a 16-grit diamond, 20-grit diamond or more specialized and aggressive tool for this part.
- Next, you’ll need to seal all joints and cracks with some type of semi-rigid filler or epoxy.
- Begin grinding with a 30 or 40-grit diamond which is metal-bonded.
- Continue grinding with a metal-bonded diamond of 80-grit.
- Move onto a 150-grit (or finer if you wish) metal-bonded diamond.
- Apply some type of chemical hardener to the concrete flooring which will densify the concrete.
- Polish with a resin-bond diamond of either 100 or 200-grit. You can also use a combination of these two.
- Polish with a resin-bond diamond of 400-grit.
- Polish with a resin-bond diamond of 800-grit.
- Finish polishing with a resin-bond diamond of either 1500 or 3000-grit.
How to complete a concrete grinding and polishing job to perfection
After the concrete floors you’re working on have been ground down to a level suitable for polishing, you have two choices. You can vacuum up the dust left behind and move right on to polishing, or you can apply a liquid filler of some sort.
This product will mix with the dust you’ve created during the grinding process to create a material which is super durable. It will automatically fill in pinholes, micro-cracks, and pop-outs with ease. Applying a liquid filler will make the polishing process go that much smoother, allowing the concrete floors to accept color, hardeners, densifiers, and protective treatments much easier.
Concrete floor grinding and polishing is easy with the right equipment
No matter what kind of concrete floors you’re working on, your client is sure to appreciate a job well done. Not many commercial clients are knowledgeable about what constitutes a proper concrete grinding and polishing job, with the results of a poor job typically not showing for some time.
Concrete grinding and polishing is a step-by-step process that requires you to have all the right equipment to complete. By using an additional liquid crack and gap filler after the grinding process has been completed, you can set your client up with perfectly shined concrete floors that will continue to shine for a long time.