We all want our homes and offices to be the perfect reflection of how we live. One way to do this is by making sure that your floors are clean, shiny, and polished. But what if you have a concrete floor? The good news is that there are ways to prep it for staining and make it look new again!
Staining concrete floors can be a big investment and a laborious job. The key ingredient in any good stain job is preparation. It is important to prep your floor for staining to have the desired look in the end, without any problems or issues. Here are some tips on how to prepare your concrete surface for staining:
Look out for contaminants
You must first examine your floor to see if it has any contaminants that would prevent you from staining the concrete. Common problems are excessive dust, oil spills, rust stains, wood or metal joints, dirt, glue stains, and mildew. Begin by spraying the floor with water in a spritz bottle and whether or not the floor darkens and whether water penetrates. If it darkens and water penetrates, it’s a sign that the floor is free from contaminants and sealers.
Remove the contaminants
After checking if your concrete floor needs to be stripped, you can proceed with removing any solids that could be embedded into the concrete. You have to use a floor scraper or putty knife to remove these solid contaminants. Wipe it clean with rags or steel wool. In most cases, if there are no sealer residues left on the floor and it’s free from dents and holes, then your floors won’t need to be stripped.
Use a chemical solvent
If your concrete is stained with oil or treated with protectant sealers, it may need to be stripped. In this case, you have to apply a chemical solvent that can dissolve the oil or the sealer. You don’t want to use water because it can cause staining on your floor. Soak up any excess liquid and let it sit for about 1 hour or the time instructed by the manufacturer so that it can chemically react with the floor. Avoid acid wash, which may cause etching for your concrete.
After allowing the chemical solvent to react with your floor, you have to scrub it off using a stiff brush or sponge. Avoid pressure washers because they can damage your concrete floor. Using a hand-operated rotary machine is another option but make sure you do it at a low speed. Avoid scrubbing out of your hands because there’s a chance you can scratch the surface of the concrete, and it’ll look bad after staining.
Get a neutralizer
After scrubbing, you have to rinse the floor. A final rinse with plain water can help neutralize any reaction that may have occurred and prepare your concrete surface for staining.
You can use a concrete cleaner and a degreaser and apply them to the floor. Let it sit for a few minutes, then scrub with a sponge or brush to remove dirt, grease, and grime.
The floor also needs to be dry in readiness for the next process, so you’ll need a wet vacuum and squeegee for this purpose. You could enhance the dryness using an air remover and a blower.
At last, you can apply your chosen sealer or stain to the concrete floor. Selecting the right color is an important part of staining that must be considered carefully so that you get a finish that looks good and lasts for years to come. If desired, you could apply two coats, but one will be sufficient to make your concrete look good.
Prepping a concrete floor for staining involves lots of work, tools, and knowledge to determine when, where, and how to do what needs to be done. That’s where the services of a professional come in handy. At Visalia Concrete, we offer quality concrete-based services and are always at your service. Contact us now or call us at (559) 214-2588.