Concrete has long been a favourite type of floor finish for both residential and commercial applications and with very good reason! There are many concrete solutions available to help you achieve the unique style, colour and even texture you are wanting in your project, each providing strength, durability and of course, a very stylish finish, the likes of which we’ll be running through in our guide to concrete flooring.
Providing us with a world of possibilities, concrete flooring can be customised in virtually any way you can think of to create a look that is truly unique. This post looks at each of the most popular concrete flooring solutions to help make your decision that much easier.
The process of stamping concrete has been widely used for well over 50 years. Most popular for outdoor areas such as pool surrounds, patios and driveways, stamped concrete provides a highly slip resistant, durable and hard wearing textured surface that mimics the pattern and styling of stonework. In fact, you can achieve the look of natural slate, limestone, brick or cobblestone and many more textures using concrete, saving you a fair chunk of dough when finishing your outdoor area!
This decorative concrete solution makes use of a stamp mat to create the desired pattern on a concrete overlay. As with most concrete flooring solutions, the finished product will require sealing as well as a re-application later on down the track – Usually, a stamped floor that requires re-sealing will have a chalky residue on the surface (Good to know!)
For more insight into the process, the video below shows just how this look is achieved:
Stained concrete is a fabulous flooring solution for both indoor and outdoor areas. The process of staining the concrete provides colour and sheen to the surface, creating a flooring solution that is uniquely suited to your needs and style.
Stains can be applied over an existing concrete floor (provided the surface is intact!) or on freshly cured concrete. Alternatively, stains are also often used to enhance the look of stamped concrete flooring.
A highly customisable option, you are not only able to select the colour intensity of your stain but also the pattern or design and even imagery (if desired – excellent for store logos!). Both acid and water based stains are available, each option creating a different effect on your stained concrete floor:
Acid Based Stain: A reactive type of finish, acid based stains emphasize variations in your selected colour. Most commonly available in earthy tones such as browns, earthy reds and blues, the metallic salt found in an acid stain causes a chemical reaction with the lime content in concrete. The end result is a truly unique finish of mottled and varied hues of colour.
Water Based Stain: A water based concrete stain does not create the same chemical reaction as seen in an acid based stain and is better suited for projects where a uniform colour is desired.
Polished Concrete Flooring
Polished concrete is definitely one of my all time favourite floor finishes! A luxurious, industrial look, polished concrete provides a beautiful, highly durable and low maintenance flooring solution and looks spectacular in both commercial and residential projects. This look can be achieved by polishing your existing concrete slab (again provided the slab is in good condition; always seek a professional’s advice on repairing any existing damage!), making it a cost effective option.
The process involves grinding, polishing and chemical treatment of the slab, resulting in a sleek and stylish floor finish with an easy to clean sheen. Polished concrete is a perfect option for those with allergies as it is not susceptible to mold or water damage.
Cured to a shiny finish, epoxy flooring is impervious to liquids and provides an excellent solution for high traffic as well as high weight areas making it ideal for garage floors; once again, another highly durable concrete flooring solution! Made using equal parts epoxy resin and a polyamine hardener, an epoxy floor finish can be applied to an existing concrete floor to increase the surface’s durability and longevity. Note, an epoxy floor finish is normally best suited for indoor applications.
Resistant to high levels of heat, an epoxy floor can also be finished with a slip resistant sealer and is available in a variety of colours from soft neutrals to bolder hues. Thanks to this finish’s textured, shiny surface, an epoxy floor will do an excellent job of helping light move around a room as light will bounce off the surface creating a warm environment.
Similar to epoxy flooring, a polyurea polyaspartic floor coating is most popular in commercial or industrial projects as well as residential garages. This product contains lower VOC (Volatile Organic Compounds – click here for more information on VOCs) making it safer to install in a home where children or pets are present and is suitable for both indoor and outdoor applications. This finish is extremely fast drying and as such, an experienced professional should always perform the installation to ensure a smooth and consistent end result.
Offering a diffused sheen, this product also effectively bounces light throughout the space and is available in a variety of colours to suit just about any style of project. Polyurea polyaspartic floor coatings create a highly durable finish, capable of withstand extreme temperatures, high traffic and weights as well as liquid spills.
Whatever finish you choose, a concrete floor is an excellent solution for both residential and commercial products, offering high durability, the freedom of customisation, luxurious texture and colour choice.
We always recommend that concrete flooring be installed by a professional to achieve a high quality finish as well as ensuring the finished product’s durability and longevity.
This post was sponsored by our friends over at Decorative Concrete Resurfacing of Missouri – Click here to get in touch for more information and a quote for your project!