Benefits of Polished Concrete

Polished Concrete and its desirable side effects

Polished concrete is becoming a trendy flooring option for industrial, commercial, and even residential locations.  It’s durability, ease-of-maintenance, and improved ambient lighting all increase the value of the floor and its performance.  Polished concrete floors are gaining traction in some of the most industrial and commercial areas in Pennsylvania, Maryland, and New Jersey.  The most popular counties include Baltimore, Philadelphia, Harrisburg, York, Lancaster, Chester, Dauphin, and other within the region.  Here are 4 of PennCoat’s favorite benefits to polished concrete floors:

1. Dust Control

All food and pharmaceutical products are manufactured in clean environments.  There can’t be any contaminants that could potentially compromise the integrity of the company’s product, which becomes more concerning when producing digestable products.  One of the largest contaminant issues is dust.  Epoxy floor coatings and troweled urethane cement are resinous floors that contain and eliminate dust.  But these installations require gallons of resins and hardeners, that also require precise mix ratios, increasing the challenge factor.   Polished concrete offers the same dust control, without the requirements of resins and hardeners, or mix ratios.  Instead of coating the floor, the polished concrete will grinds the concrete, in a series of grinding and polishing heads that increase in finer grit.  Once the grinding/polishing steps are complete, the final process is to burnish the floor with a semi-penetrating sealer and high-speed burnisher.  The finished floor is sealed and and densified to eliminate the dust that can cause product contamination.

2. Decreases maintenance cost

Standard concrete coatings including epoxy and urethane cement can slowly begin to deteriorate, delaminate, and even corrode.  The degree of wear can vary depending on the location, but regardless, these concrete coatings have a limitation to their lifespan, specifically epoxy.  Polished concrete is not subject to this floor coating depreciation, because polished concrete doesn’t involve any coatings.  The only liquid used is a densifier and a finished semi-penetrating sealer.  The densifier is a light application that gets applied using a hand pump, and spread using a micro-fiber mop, which penetrates into the top of the concrete.  The lithium sillicates inside the densifer react with the compounds in the concrete, which causes the concrete to gradually increase in hardness and density.  The sealer is a semi-penetrating sealer, which clings tot he concrete, allowing it to hold a strong bond to the concrete.  These sealers may gradually wear, but the concrete has alround been ground and polished that the only maintenance involved is re-burnishing over the surface with a diamond impregnated pad and high-speed burnisher.

3. Increased ambient lighting and presentation

One of the many unsung qualities for polished concrete is its ability to reflect light.  A room with polished concrete will reflect a greater amount of light, which can increase the light exposure within a room, reducing the need for light housing units and energy to charge the lights.   Not only does the floor increase the light reflection, polished concrete can expose the aggregates embedded within the concrete, creating a stylistic diorama of varying colors and shapes.  Between teh floor’s reflection and the exposed aggregate, polished concrete creates a very presentable and durable floor that utilizes the concrete slab that is already in place.

4. No coatings required

It was briefly mentioned in the first polished concrete proclamation, but another benefit for polished concrete, from an installation perspective, is that no coatings are required.  Polished concrete utilized the concrete slab that is already set.  The installers grind over the slab, with successive grinding and polishing heads, until the slab is smooth.  Involved in the grinding/polishing is the application of densifiers, which is loaded with lithium silicates that react with the compounds in the concrete, increasing the hardness and density, while decreasing the porosity.  This makes it easier for applicators, which makes the installation less expensive than typical epoxy or urethane cement floors, while simultaneously decreasing the maintenance requirements for industrial and commercial concrete flooring.

Contact PennCoat for polished concrete questions, or installation suggestions for your plant or facility.