Renovating Your Home: Best Treatments for Concrete Floors


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Are you considering a home renovation? You are not alone. In 2018, Americans spent $394 billion on home improvement, with an average residential expenditure of $7,560. When you renovate your home, one of the most important decisions you make is flooring. It is, literally and decoratively, the foundation of every room.

You may be considering concrete floors, which can cost much less than other flooring choices. Beyond cost, there are other advantages to installing concrete floors, such as sustainability, versatility and durability. Here are several ways to make your concrete floors look great in every room.

Stain

Perhaps the best way to add color to concrete is to stain it. Staining changes the color permanently through a chemical reaction. Pentra products provide a rich, colorfast finish in an array of neutrals (plus black and white, of course). If you do not see one you like, custom colors are available. Stains can be applied in a variety of ways to give different looks. You can achieve a nearly solid uniform color, leave visible brush strokes, choose overall mottling or attain a marbleized finish. Faux grout lines can break up a large expanse of concrete and give a more industrial look. You can also etch lines to imitate the appearance of natural stone tiles. High quality stains guard against damage from harsh ultraviolet rays, so staining is an exceptional choice for surfaces that receive a lot of sunlight and for areas that combine indoor and outdoor living spaces.

Dye

Similar to stains, dyes are an effective way to add color to your concrete floor. Unlike stains, dyes are usually not permanent. They sit on the surface of the concrete and settle into the pores, but there is no chemical alteration to the concrete. This means you can change the hue if you redo the room in the future. Also, because dyes sit on top of concrete, they can provide a slightly smoother texture than staining. Some dyes imitate the marbling appearance of stains, while others look more solid and opaque. Dyes are available in a wide range of vibrant colors, allowing you to make a dramatic statement with your floor. However, be sure you use dyes in rooms that do not receive copious amounts of sunlight, as they do not protect against UV rays and can fade over time.

Epoxy Coating

The thickest concrete coloring is an epoxy coating. Epoxy coatings come in every color imaginable, which makes them ideal for creating patterns in your floor; common choices are checkerboard, herringbone and other geometrical patterns which can be stenciled on. Epoxy coatings often provide a non-skid finish. They are popular for garages and industrial areas. They are impervious to chemicals and exceptionally durable, which makes them standard in manufacturing plants and other commercial spaces. You may consider an epoxy coating for a home gym or playroom.

Sealer

While color is optional, sealer is a must. Concrete is naturally porous, so if you want to protect it from spills, you need to seal it. Staining an entire floor because you have chosen a certain color is a great idea — staining it one mishandled coffee cup at a time is not. Sealer protects concrete from blemishes and most types of damage, such as scrapes and chips from moving furniture or dropping heavy objects. Sealant also protects floors from pet urine, scratches and odors. The pores in unsealed concrete can sometimes house dust, which can trigger allergy attacks and make housekeeping a nightmare.

Find a sealer that hardens your concrete, while creating a smooth surface. It should resist oil and water, while still letting the moisture in your concrete escape. For the strongest finish possible, choose a sealer that penetrates to improve the density of your floor. Most sealers dry clear, so that the color you have chosen shines through. A sealed concrete floor is easy to clean and maintain, and virtually indestructible. It should last decades. Polished, sealed concrete is the ideal foundation for your area rugs, your décor and your life.

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