A. Preparation of Existing Concrete Surface
Curing agents, sealers, paints, coatings, waxes or water repellents must be removed prior to the concrete acid stain application. Curing agents are products that are sprayed on the concrete after it is poured to help hold in moisture during the curing process. You may not be aware that they are there.
An easy test to find out if they are there or if there is any kind of sealer on the concrete is to pour a small glass of water onto the concrete surface and spread it around so that it coverage approximately 1-2 sq. ft. . Let the water sit for about 5 minutes and then check to see if it is absorbing into the concrete or is just beading up on the top.
A good indication that it is soaking into the concrete is a slight darkening of the color of the concrete.
Mechanical methods of removal are not advised as they may scratch the surface leaving unsightly patterns of scratches in the surface.
Older concrete surfaces also need to be tested for acceptance of the acid stain. The cleaned surface must be penetrable by water. Again, if water beads on the surface and is not readily absorbed into the concrete, mild acidic detergents such as our Dyna-Blue concrete renovator may be of assistance in your concrete acid stain application. Never acid etch concrete to be acid stained. This will use up the free lime in the concrete and leave you with a surface that is not stainable for concrete acid stain application.
B. New Concrete:
Freshly poured concrete should be sufficiently cured, a minimum of thirty days before concrete acid stain application. If score patterns are desired, a diamond blade grinder may be used to score various patterns, borders or designs onto the surface prior to, or after concrete acid stain application. If light colored grout lines are desired score after staining process is complete.
Freshly poured or recently poured concrete needs to be scrubbed thoroughly, sometimes more thoroughly than old concrete due to what is known as latentcy, this is the "dust", if you will, that remains on top of the concrete after it is poured and cured.
This latentcy will not allow the concrete stain to penetrate as is needed to provide a beautiful concrete acid stain application so we need to use a floor maintainer (buffer) with a black or green scrub pad and TSP (trisodium phosphate) or our favorite, Dyna Blue, to scrub and shop vac the floor clean.
concrete staining do it yourself
C. Cleaning of Concrete:
These next two steps will take you from having a good concrete stained floor to a Fantastic concrete acid stain application. As we say in the Decorative Concrete industry, application of the pretty stuff is easy but the preparation of the concrete is what makes the difference and boy will this make a difference as you'll see and be very happy you took the time and effort to do it.
First we need to scrape the paint and other things off the concrete before the concrete stain process, you will not find them all but when you wet the concrete you will see everything as we see here, we have scrubbed the concrete and are now vacuuming. concrete staining do it yourself This a great time to have a razor scraper handy as the materials that are left on the floor after scrubbing have been sitting in water and Dyna-Blue solution and will be much easier to scrape off now.
Be careful with the razor scraper and you may want to place it in the little holder for the extra attachments on the shop-vac if you have one.
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