The in’s and out’s of the Concrete Grinding Industry
Written by Concrete Grinding Solutions on 01 September 2017
The concept of concrete polishing is relatively new, but it is a rapidly growing industry. Although methods like concrete grinding and polishing have been used for 10 or more years, the development of concrete grinding company in Melbourne companies has only taken off over the last 2 or 3 years.
Every new industry faces challenges and a learning process. Some general contractors, property owners and steel fabricator in Melbourne believe that concrete grinding and concrete polishing is just a matter of laying some type of abrasive onto the surface of concrete and letting a machine do the work. This is not true and there are many variables to this highly technical operation. Often work suffers because some contractor with little experience or know-how needed to achieve the desired results decides to go ahead and give it a try.
The Process of Concrete Polishing Melbourne
Terminology is being misused in this industry because it is in its infancy. Concrete polishing for instance is a mechanical process that cuts and refines concrete surfaces until desired results are reached. On the other hand, polished concrete involves multiple abrasive agents and grits used properly.
Categories and Processing Methods
Ground Concrete is the lowest category of concrete processing methods. This method is used to achieve a low sheen, non-reflective surface using 50-grit resin or less during the grinding step.
Honed Concrete is the next category and uses any abrasive from 100-grit to 400-grit resin to achieve a slight reflection with low to high quality sheen.
Polished Concrete is the highest category and any abrasive 800-grit and above is used to achieve a mirror or glass-like finish. The typical grit for this is 1,500 to 3,000.
Numerous pre-existing variables exit with the three processes listed above that affect the end results. Some are within the contractor’s control, but others are not. Contractors can control which abrasives are used, actions and steps and the speed at which they are taken, and the quality of equipment used.
What is beyond a contractor’s control is the levelness of floors and the design being considered. What makes the difference in what is achievable for professional craftsmen is having a working knowledge of these variables.
The concrete itself is a crucial element of the variables involved with the process of concrete polishing and grinding. Residential projects typically work with hand-troweled low PSI concrete mixes below 2,500. These do not polish as well because hand-troweling leaves it denser with a variety of low and high surfaces.
Civil engineering expertise is also a must for professionals working with concrete polishing. This is even more vital when concrete areas are in areas of high traffic. A lot of skill is required for proper preparation of driveways if they are expected to last. REO bars designed by metal fabricators Melbourne are needed and a steel fabricator will ensure that they can withstand much weight and abrasion along with stronger overall concrete.
Commercial Concrete Surfaces
Higher PSI concrete mixes are used for commercial surfaces and machine-troweling is used in open areas while it is hand-troweled in tighter areas like corners. The density of this concrete is easier to polish.
Prior knowledge of the type of concrete slab and how it will polish up helps contractors reach the desired results. This provides customers with a better floor that costs less to finish and contractors receive amazing reviews that can lead to future work.
Two contractors using the exact same grit may return different results. This is why it’s vital for contractors to learn everything they can about the processes and methods of polishing and grinding concrete if they want to achieve their goals for concrete processing.