Polished concrete is becoming very popular not just for its sleek modern appearance but for it's long term durability, ease of maintenance, environmental friendliness, sustainability and low life cycle cost to name a few.
There are many different design options to choose from here are the basics.
Cement fines. The very top layer of the concrete. This finish requires near perfect concrete finished with a power trowel.
Fine Aggregate. Just below the cream layer of concrete small aggregate becomes visible.
Coarse aggregate. Grinding further into the concrete exposes larger aggregates.
While most concrete can be polished the condition of the slab can impact which aggregate exposures are possible. A slab must be finished a certain way, be in relatively good shape and be very flat for a Class A exposure to be an option.
Floor Flatness measured with the F number system also known as FF, F numbers and F value is usually only specified and measured on commercial concrete pours greater than 10,000 SF. The higher the FF number the flatter floor. When polishing concrete flat floors are very important for uniform aggregate exposure. A very bumpy floor with highs and lows will end up with a random combination of all 3 aggregate exposures. The high spots are cut down exposing coarse aggregate while the low spots are still in the cream layer of the concrete.
Level 1 Flat
Reflected images have flat appearance.
Level 2 Satin
Reflected images have matte appearance.
Level 3 Polished
Reflected images are not sharp and clear but can be easily identified.
Level 4 Highly Polished
Reflected images have sharp, crisp, mirror like appearance.
For new construction projects our job begins before the concrete is even poured. If you are in the planning stages of a new build it's important you get in touch with us early on in the process.
Saw cuts in concrete are called control joints. They play an important role in preventing cracks from forming while concrete is shrinking as it dries. They "control" cracking. It's important to fill those joints not just for aesthetics and hygienic reasons but to protect the joint shoulders from breaking off under heavy wheeled traffic such as carts, forklifts and casters.