In the 1980’s, builders actively used stains to finish concrete floors, driveways and any place with wide expanses needing color. Architects loved it right off, but mainly for commercial building, restaurants and public building because of concrete’s durability and the stain’s ability to emphasize, not diminish the integrity of their designs.
Stained concrete floors can be used in virtually any room in the home, including the living room, bathroom and on countertops, or for applications elsewhere around the home, including walkways, pool decks, patios, stepping stones as well as concrete garden statuary and foundations. These stains are equally suitable for interior or exterior use, old or new concrete, even vertical or horizontal surfaces.
Depending on the concrete, stains can be sued over existing, 100-year-old-floors and, of course, new concrete that is at least 6 weeks old.
Any room can be fitted with a concrete floor, either poured or installed blocks. Older concrete floors previously varnished or painted or otherwise sealed can be stripped. Sanding is possible, but chemical stripper is preferred because it leaves more mottling from limestone minerals for more striking patterns.
One popular concrete stain process involves three-steps. Stain. Sealer. Wax. Once the stain goes down, it’s your option as to the topcoat finish, whether to seal or was or both. Sealers (matte or glossy) seal the concrete pores and are recommended in areas where spills are likely. The wax, in this case, a satin, protects the surface from normal traffic. Outdoor stained concrete need not be finished, but you can if you want.
Color choices fit almost any interiors. Eighty percent of customers prefer the wax finish rather than sealer. Homeowners who prefer a higher gloss finish can use the floss sealer only.
To create a more textured look, designers add dimensional effect to their concrete surfaces, for example, scoring the surface.
Concrete stains and finished can be economical to apply, and they are easy enough to be a do-it-yourself job. Any unevenness actually adds to the variation in color.
Stained concrete floors are permanent and very easy to maintain, needing only a wipe over with a damp mop from time to time and, as appropriate, re-waxing every few years.