Several Mechanically Polished Concrete Options
Things to think about for your floor – some options at no additional cost.
Joint fill is the compound that is injected into the control or expansion joints in the concrete slab. The most important advantage in filling the joints is maintenance. Exposed joints are open channels that collect dirt, debris, and small parts. Imagine working in a manufacturing environment and dropping small nuts or screws that roll into an open joint. Frustrating. With a sealer (flexible) or filler (rigid) the small parts can more easily be found.
The cost is generally low, less than $1 per linear foot. On a 10,000 square feet job that would only be about $700.00.
One caveat, if your slab is a new pour then the fill would need to wait until the last moment before occupancy to give the slab the maximum amount of time to cure. A soft sealer compound would be used to allow for slab movement. If the slab is older and well cured then either a flexible sealer or rigid filler can be used; typically applied before or during the mechanical polishing process so that the fill is cut off even to the ground floor.
Color is fickle. The problem with color that is applied after the pour is that it almost never meets the customer’s expectations. We have a blog post about that you can read here.
That said, if post-pour color is desired then the cost will run about $1 per square foot. On a 10,000 square feet job that would run $10,000, so it’s obviously an expensive option.
For a no-additional-cost option (meaning, no-additional-cost to your mechanically polished concrete costs) for a new concrete pour consider getting integral color. Integral color puts the color in the concrete mix during the pouring process. That way, the concrete will shine up beautifully AND have a long-lasting color. The integral color will avoid problems with oil and somewhat defray color expense; integral color does cost a little, but not as much as post-pour color.
Edging is done by hand. A crew member works on their knees with a small electric grinder fitted with the same diamond polishing pads as the larger floor polishers (like this Terrco 6200). The hand edging allows the polish process to extend right up against a wall, column, machine, or other barrier. Edging by hand is more time-consuming and costly than using the larger machines; thus, the cost is more. The price for full edging varies, but can add $1 per square foot to the total cost.
For some of our clients in large open spaces (like factories, warehouses, and plants) there is a potential cost savings by choosing to exclude edging walls, columns, and machines closer than 2 inches. The larger machines can get within 2 inches, which is absolutely satisfactory to most large venues. Sometimes companies will even put down a painted line or yellow sticker as a “caution” measure, which nicely hides the minute gap in polishing.
Interested in learning more?
Mechanically polished concrete is different from some so-called polished concrete, and there are many advantages to mechanically polished concrete to which our national client list will attest, so email or call (888-610-6656) Concrete Polishing, Inc. for more information about making the right decision for your factory or industrial space.