Everything You Need to Know About Concrete Polishing

Everything You Need to Know About Concrete Polishing

Dec 7, 2020 | Uncategorized

Polished concrete is fast becoming one of the most popular concrete flooring options available! There’s no need for any concrete coating, waxing, or further polishing. This saves home and business owners a fortune while they make the most of their existing flooring system.

If you’re considering concrete polishing for your home or business, you’ll want to know everything you can so you can decide if it’s right for you.

Thankfully, we’ve created this guide for everything you need to know about concrete polishing! Continue reading to learn more!

What is Polished Concrete?

Polished concrete is a concrete floor that has been gradually ground down with a floor grinder to reach the desired level of sheen and smoothness. The process makes the concrete more durable, resistant, and last longer. Polished concrete floors can also be customized to fit your design needs!

Where Can Polished Concrete Be Used?

There is a wide variety of places that polished concrete can be used! This flooring system can be found everywhere, from residential to commercial to industrial environments. Below, we’ll take a look at some of the most common installation locations for polished concrete:

Residential

  • Garages
  • Basements
  • Living Rooms
  • Kitchens

Commercial

  • Hotels
  • Office Buildings
  • Retail Stores/Strip Malls
  • Restaurants
  • Auto Shops

Industrial

  • Manufacturing Plants
  • Factories
  • Distribution Centers
  • Warehouses
  • Data Centers

The Concrete Polishing Process

The concrete polishing process starts with cleaning and inspecting your concrete floor for damage. If any damage, such as cracking or chipping, is discovered, it’ll need to be repaired before continuing.

Once repairs have been completed, the rough grind can begin. This consists of using a floor grinder fitted with a diamond grinding wheel to remove any minor blemishes and prepare the floor for sealing and polishing. The rough grind starts with a 30 to 40-grit grinding wheel that is gradually moved up to a 150-grit wheel.

After rough grinding the floor, an impregnating sealer is applied to protect the concrete from the inside out. This sealer also hardens and densifies the concrete to create a more durable, non-porous surface.

With the sealer in place, the fine polish is begun. Like the rough grind, a floor grinder is utilized, but a resin-bond polishing wheel is used instead. The polishing starts with a 100 to 200-grit polishing wheel and is gradually moved up to either a 1,500 or 3,000-grit wheel, depending on the level of sheen you want.

Once the polishing is complete, your floor is ready for full use!

Concrete Polishing Benefits

  • Durability: Polished concrete is highly durable and can withstand hard impacts, rough abrasions, and high volumes of foot and vehicle traffic.
  • Resistance: As the polishing process makes the floor non-porous, it can repel various substances, such as chemicals like oil, grease, and gas, as well as water.
  • Longevity: When properly maintained and cared for, a polished concrete floor can last for as long as 25 years or more!
  • Customization: There are many ways to customize a polished concrete floor, such as concrete stains, stencils, and scoring.
  • Energy-efficiency: This flooring system’s reflectivity allows fewer lights to be used while achieving the same visibility, which will make your home or business more energy-efficient and save money on your electric bill.
  • Sustainability: Polished concrete is one of the most sustainable flooring systems on the market. When you polish concrete, you’re making the most of the floor you already have, and its longevity allows you to utilize this floor for decades!

Polished Concrete FAQ's

Can any concrete floor be polished?

In most cases, yes. However, if your concrete floor is not structurally stable, it may not be a candidate for concrete polishing. Most damage can be repaired in any concrete floor to make it eligible for polishing. But if a floor’s structural integrity is compromised, polishing wouldn’t provide any benefits to the floor. Luckily, this is a rare circumstance.

How much does polished concrete cost?

The cost of a polished concrete floor can vary depending on the size of your space, customization options, and the degree of repairs needed. However, you can expect to pay anywhere from $3 to $12 per square foot for concrete polishing on average.

Are polished concrete floors slippery?

Despite the smooth, glossy appearance of polished concrete floors, they’re not as slippery as they look! These floors are actually less slick when clean and dry than many other flooring systems, such as waxed linoleum or hardwood. The key to keeping your polished concrete slip-resistant is to clean up spills as they happen and keep up with routine maintenance.