Over time, your concrete floors may start deteriorating. When this happens, you will want to consider applying protective coatings. In order for your concrete floor coating application to be successful, you will evaluate several critical factors. Before applying a new coating system to your concrete flooring, surface preparation is the most critical component of the entire process. To get the most out of your concrete floor coating, you must prepare your concrete floors properly. Poorly prepared concrete floors will affect the service life as well as the integrity of the coatings. Therefore, here are ways you may prepare your concrete floors for a successful floor coating application.
Check On the Condition of the Concrete Floor Surface
Examine the floor thoroughly for laitance or friable/weak layer on the surface of your concrete floor. If your floor has this weak layer, the adhesives will not bond perfectly, affecting the durability of the coatings. You also want to look for any barriers on your concrete floor and remove them. These include things such as dirt, efflorescence, and existing sealers.
Do Some Tests
Curing compounds, moisture, and grease or oils are contaminants that can significantly affect the integrity of your floor coatings. Therefore, test your floor for these contaminants. In most cases, when concrete is being poured, curing compounds are applied to it. These compounds contain chemicals that may inhibit the adhesion of your concrete floor coatings. To test for these compounds, use a solution of muriatic acid. Apply the solution to various areas on your concrete floor. For a floor that doesn't have these compounds, you should see vigorous bubbles when the solution gets in contact with the concrete. If you detect the presence of the compounds, specialised chemical solutions from your local home improvement store may be of help.
Moisture will cause hydrostatic pressure, which will in turn lead to bubbles or blisters in the coatings. To test for moisture, tape small plastic sheets across the floor and let them sit for about a day. Afterwards, examine them for any signs of moisture. You have to find the source of the moisture before the coating is done.
Grease and oils will also affect the strength of the coating adhesives. If certain areas on the floor have dark spots, the floor is likely contaminated with grease or oils. Testing for oil is simple. Pour some water at different areas on your floor. If oil is present, the water will bead up. In such a case, you must degrease the floor before it is coated.
Repair Surface Damages
Find any cracks in your floor and have them repaired. If there are any projections on the floor, grind them. Look for any loose concrete and clean it. In addition, holes in the floor should be cleaned and filled.
All these are surface preparation tips that will guarantee you a long-lasting floor.