To retrofit polished concrete flooring to an existing building, there are several options. The method and the cost will depend on the existing floors and the amount of work that needs to be done to accomplish the look the customer desires. It is easier to work before any walls are erected, of course, but in an existing building the walls are not the only consideration: If you have to add a new concrete slab to the flooring to accomplish the right look, you might run into issues involving doors that are already in place.
Your first option, which is the easiest and less expensive choice, involves simply grinding down the existing floor to the desired level of shine. The floor will be cut 3-4 times depending on shine, as well as the level of aggregate exposure. The color and design of the floor can be changed using this method during the final polishing and staining phases. Whether the initial grinding process is done wet or dry will depend on the condition of both the floor and the work site itself. After the initial grinding, the floor will be grouted to get rid of air bubbles and imperfections, after which there will be several more grinding phases. A clear liquid hardener can then be applied to the floor, which can take up to 24 hours to cure (but new, quick-dry hardeners are coming onto the market all the time). This hardener will give the floor gloss and additional strength. The floor will then be polished again until the desired level of shine is achieved.
The second option involves laying a whole new slab on the sub flooring. The new slab should be no less than 50 mm thick and can often cause problems at the site with the existing doors and the height of the ceiling. You may have to adjust all doors after the flooring is laid.
This posting is sponsored by Perfect Polish, the national leader in polished concrete flooring.