Many people believe that Polished Concrete is a Grind and Seal, contrary to popular belief they are two different methods of concrete floor refinishing. The main difference between sealed concrete and a true polished concrete slab is the densifiers added to a polished floor to strengthen its durability, polishing capability and lifespan.
A sealed concrete floor is only protected with a coating system, whereas a mechanical polished concrete floor has special chemicals added to the floor to harden the cement paste and provide a tight surface to be polished.
When done correctly polished concrete floors will last a lifetime with proper care. The only maintenance required with polished concrete is a rebuff every 10 or so years if it has dulled. The rebuffing will bring back the gloss in the floor
As a sealed concrete floor is coating applied over the top of the concrete it can scratch and damage more easily. Sealed concrete will require recoating every 3 to 5 years depending on traffic and sealer product used.
Polished concrete, on the other hand, uses chemical hardeners that have been added to the floor making them highly scratch resistant.
Generally speaking, a true polished concrete floor can cost around double the price as a grind a seal but is a more cost-effective flooring solution in the long run as it never requires a recoating.
Cleaning polished concrete floors is relatively simple. Vacuuming or using a microfibre dust mop is best, as dust can accumulate on the floors. It is best to use a wet mop once per week with a pH-neutral floor cleanser, followed by using a damp mop rinsed in clean, warm water.
Please note that water cannot be applied on polished concrete floors for the first three days after the floor polishing is complete. This time allows the chemical process to fully dry and will ensure that no discolouration of the finish that could occur if water is applied to the floors too early.
Only using pH-neutral cleaning agents are essential. Do NOT use any bleach detergent or acid-based cleaners such as vinegar or ammonia. These cleansers will damage the surface of the floor. Do no use abrasive cleaning materials such as scourers or scrubbers will leave unsightly scuff marks and diminish the lustre of the floor.
If liquids such as tea, coffee, wine or soft drinks spill on the floor, clean the spills as soon as possible, with clean, warm water and a mop.
Reactive Stains: Orange and lemon juice or any acidic food or juice must be cleaned off the floor quickly, as they can etch into the floor and cause damage.
Penetrating Stains: Oils and red wine should also be cleaned immediately, as they can leave a discolouration on polished concrete floors.
Carefully consider what cleaners will be used in wet areas like bathrooms, kitchens and laundries. Many cleaning products contain acidic or alkaline agents and MUST NOT be used. Haynes Polished Concrete takes no responsibility in floor damage, which results from using cleaning agents that are not conducive to maintaining polished concrete floors. We only recommend using a pH-neutral floor cleaner which is available for purchase at hardware stores, Bunnings or cleaning supply stores.
Yes, they are fixable if chips occur; however, there is no guarantee the chipped area will look exactly like the floor around it. Polished concrete floors are generally the hardest floor on the market if done correctly.
Unfortunately, a concrete floor not cracking is something that cannot be guaranteed. Concrete may not crack for many years and then suddenly hairline cracks may appear in the floor. When cracking occurs, it is generally because of ground movement and the reactivity of the soil the slab is laid on. Even if all measures are taken by the contractors that pour the concrete to minimise cracks while the concete slab is prepared, poured, finished and cured, the slab is still not guaranteed not to crack over time.
Polished concrete floors are generally not slippery underfoot unless it is wet. If the floor does get wet, it is no different from any other hard floor surface and can be slippery. Please note, having cats or dogs inside is a risk if they run around in the home often, as they can slide on the floor and can result in injuries.
Polished concrete is not as cold as one may assume due to its thermal mass. It retains heat from the sunlight and slowly emits radiant heat throughout the night in winter. For this same reason, the floor will stay cool in summer. New homeowners can also opt to have hydronic heating placed within the floor in the design stage for new home builds.
Polished concrete is best suited for indoor use only since it can be a slippery surface when wet. To complement the polished concrete floors inside, we recommend to have either a grind and seal outside with a clear, slip-resistant sealer used or a Pavilion Finish which gives the same grit factor as exposed aggregate but the surface is smooth to walk on.
Benefits of polished concrete floors
Polished concrete is the most durable flooring option available on the market today for residential, commercial and industrial floor spaces. Polished concrete floors can last up to ten years with a basic, regular maintenance schedule. Residential homeowners may need to consider rebuffing their floors after ten years; however, this is dependent on many factors. The amount of foot traffic and general wear and tear that the polished concrete floors are exposed to are the two main factors.
Value for money
Unlike timber hardwood floors, laminates, tiles and vinyl flooring; polished concrete is at the lower end of price per square meter and taking into consideration the ongoing costs involved in maintaining flooring options such as timber floors or tiles, polished concrete is the best value for money.
Polished concrete flooring is a top choice for clients who want a unique and eye-catching floor in their home or retail space. These floors are also the preferred choice for any indoor environment where durable, hassle-free floors are required. There is no other flooring option on the market that allows clients the same scope and flexibility when tailoring their floor to meet their needs.
Energy efficient and eco-friendly
Polished concrete floors emit no mould or mildew and are allergy free and harbour no dust mites. Having polished concrete floors can save on your energy bills by creating more light in your home by up to 30% in daylight hours. They also stay warmer in the colder months and cooler in the summer months due to the concrete’s thermal mass; which works as a natural insulator. New builds can also have hydronic heating installed in the concrete floor if the client has opted for this kind of heating option.
EASY TO CLEAN
Polished concrete floors only need a basic maintenance routine to keep them clean and looking new .Daily sweeping or mopping with a ficro fibre dust mop will ensure any dust or dirt accumulation and wet mop once a week with warm water or ph neutral floor cleaner is all that is needed to keep your floor looking brand new