Concrete Contractors Colorado Springs are versatile and can be finished in many ways. Some finishes, like exposed aggregate and broom finish, require new concrete, but others, such as staining, can be done on existing concrete.
This type of finish exposes coarse decorative aggregate, typically richly colored natural stones like basalts, granites, and limestones, or recycled materials such as seashells and recycled glass. It is low maintenance and durable.
Concrete is a popular material for construction projects because it is affordable, durable, and versatile. However, once a concrete slab is poured, it needs to be finished and polished to ensure that the surface is both functional and aesthetic. There are many different types of finishes available, including power floating and float finishing. Each has its own advantages and disadvantages, but which one is best for your concrete project?
Floating is the first step in finishing concrete, and it helps to level and smooth out the concrete. It also helps to push any coarse aggregate down and makes it easier for the next steps, like steel troweling to get a fine finish.
There are many different types of floats available, such as wood floats and magnesium floats. Wood floats are made from hardwoods and tend to rough up the concrete surface, while magnesium floats do not. Wood floats are often used on smaller jobs to help level out the concrete and give it a smoother appearance. They also allow bleed water to evaporate faster, which is important for curing the concrete.
Magnesium floats are more common for larger projects and can be used by hand or with a power machine. They produce a smooth, dense, and level finish that is resistant to damage from heavy equipment. The finish is easy to clean and sanitize, making it ideal for industrial floors. It is also a good choice for projects in colder climates, as the smooth surface prevents moisture from seeping into the ground and frosting the concrete.
After using a bull float to smooth out the majority of the concrete, workers will switch to a hand float to complete the floating process. A hand float is smaller than the bull float and can get into hard-to-reach areas, such as around pipes or drains. It can also be used to touch up the edges and corners of large concrete pours. A hand float also helps to push down any exposed aggregate, which is necessary for creating a finished, polished concrete floor. This process helps to reduce dust and dirt, which is especially important for commercial applications.
Concrete is a very versatile construction material and can be finished in many ways to give it different textures, shapes, and colors. When deciding on the concrete finish for your project you need to consider several factors including purpose and budget. The most popular and basic concrete finish is the trowel finish. This is achieved by smoothing the top layer of concrete with a trowel after it has been laid. This type of finish is ideal for floors and walls and can be used to create different patterns in the concrete.
Troweling can be done manually using a hand float or mechanized with a power trowel. A power trowel is a large machine that resembles a fan with a set of flat steel blades. It is important to note that a power trowel should be used only after the concrete has been floated. Using a power trowel before floating will result in a weakened surface with tiny cracks and an unsightly dusty appearance. It is also important to know that troweling must be done in a very specific manner. Overdoing it can cause the concrete to become too dense and hard, while not enough can lead to a weak and crumbly surface.
When using a power trowel, you need to be very careful and take your time to make sure that the concrete is not getting too dense. If you are not careful and overdo it, the concrete will be too stiff to work with and will break apart or crumble easily. Having a partner when using a power trowel is a good idea because it takes two people to operate and guide the machine in the right direction. To move the power trowel, lift the handle up to go left and down to go right.
Brooming is a rough textured finish of the concrete that produces small ridges in the concrete. This type of finish is often used on driveways or sidewalks and can provide traction control as well as being slip-resistant.
Exposed aggregate is a finish of the concrete that leaves the top surface of the concrete exposed. This can add visual interest and texture to the concrete and is popular for pool decks and patios. It is important to note that this type of concrete finish must be made after the concrete has been floated and not before, as it can become very hard and brittle.
Concrete finishing is a process of shaping and polishing cured concrete to give it a desired look. It is done by using a variety of tools and techniques that can be used to achieve different textures and looks. This type of finish is extremely versatile and can be applied to many types of concrete projects, including floors, sidewalks, and driveways. This process also helps to increase the strength and durability of the concrete. It is also environmentally friendly and offers high fire resistance.
The most common concrete finish is a smooth surface. This is achieved by using screeds and trowels. This method of finishing provides a hard, durable surface that is easy to clean and maintain. It is also a cost-effective option and can be used for residential, commercial, or industrial projects.
Another popular concrete finish is a salt finish. This is achieved by placing coarse rock salt crystals on the wet concrete and then washing them away with streams of water once the concrete has set. This produces a textured, mottled appearance that is attractive and can be colored to match other materials like slate, brick, or wood. It is also more durable than a smooth finish and hides minor imperfections well.
A swirl finish is a unique concrete finishing technique that involves smearing the concrete in an evenly overlapping circular pattern. This gives the concrete an aesthetically pleasing look and makes it safer to walk or stand on than a smooth surface, especially in wet conditions. It is also easier to clean than a smooth finish.
Colored concrete is a common form of finishing that can be achieved by mixing pigments directly into the concrete mix or post-cure staining. It is a popular choice for patios, pool decks, and commercial flooring because it creates a modern, stylish look that can be customized to suit the needs of each project. Colored concrete is also highly durable and requires very little maintenance.
A broom finish is a simple and inexpensive way to finish concrete. It gives the concrete a rough, unpolished texture and is ideal for outdoor use because it is resistant to stains and scratches. It is also easy to keep clean with regular cleaning and occasional sealing.
Concrete contractors use many different finishes to create decorative and functional concrete. The choice of finish depends on what the concrete is being used for and cost considerations. Once a concrete finish is installed, it needs to be properly sealed to prevent water ingress and staining.
Sealing concrete helps to extend the life of the surface and maintain the desired appearance. It also protects the concrete from contaminants, salts, and other harmful substances.
The type of sealant used depends on the application. There are several options available, including acrylics, epoxy and polyurethane. Solvent-based sealers are the best option for outdoor surfaces as they provide a longer life span than water-based sealers and don’t require as frequent reapplication. Penetrating concrete sealers are also popular as they retain the natural look of the concrete while providing protection.
Broom finish is a common choice for high priority exterior concrete surfaces such as roadways, bridge decks and parking garages. It is easy to clean and provides a good level of slip resistance. However, broom finished concrete is very susceptible to scaling during harsh winter weather. This is caused by the concrete becoming saturated with water, which eventually freezes and expands, causing cracking and spalling of the surface.
One of the most common and attractive decorative concrete finishes is exposed aggregate. This finish gives the concrete a unique texture and colour which can add interest to driveways, patios and other outdoor living spaces. Exposed aggregate concrete is also a practical choice as it offers a non-slip surface. The aggregates used in this finish can vary from pebbles to seashells, granite or even glass.
While sealers help to reduce the appearance of stains and mould, it is important that all spills are wiped up promptly to avoid damage to the concrete surface. It is also essential to keep the concrete well-sealed throughout its lifetime to help resist moisture ingress, which can lead to fungus growth and discolouration.