Concrete floors are known for their toughness and durability. But, they still suffer damage sometimes, especially in industrial settings.
Patching concrete floors is a handy option if you need a quick fix. Doing a thorough patching job on a damaged concrete floor helps it look and perform better.
Unfortunately, patches only last so long, and you may want to seek a long-term solution to your concrete damage. Polishing a concrete floor is one way to restore and help it resist future problems.
What Damage Does Your Concrete Floor Have?
The first step to patching your floor is to asses what types of damage it has suffered. There are several common types of concrete problems, including:
- Rebar corrosion – when steel rusts, it expands, and the force of that expansion can break concrete apart. If your concrete breaks open without an obvious cause and there is rust inside, it’s time to call in a structural engineer to advise you on the best steps to take.
- Freeze/thaw deterioration – water inside concrete expands when it freezes and breaks concrete apart. The surface of the concrete will crumble, crack or scale if this is the problem.
- Abrasion/erosion – this is a common problem on industrial floors where rubber or steel wheels eat away at the concrete. You might notice ruts in high traffic areas.
- Impact/overload -a forceful blow or too much weight on concrete can cause it to crumble or crack.
Fixing the underlying cause of these concrete damage situations is always the best way to solve the problem. It’s not always possible though, and you can buy time by patching the damage.
How To Patch Concrete Floors
First, you need to remove any loose or damaged concrete. Use a hammer and chisel or power tools if they are available.
You want to apply your patch to as much solid concrete as possible. Vacuum the patch area to remove dust and small debris.
Next, wet the patch area. Otherwise, the old concrete will suck the moisture out of the wet concrete you pour, weakening the bond.
Then, mix some concrete and pour it into the patch area. Smooth the surface with a trowel to level it with the surrounding floor.
Finally, let the patch dry for at least one day before walking on it. Concrete cures to its final hardness after about 28 days, and you should avoid putting stress on the area for that period.
Problems With Concrete Patching
In most cases, concrete patching is only a temporary fix. Therefore, after some time you most likely will have to patch again or address the underlying problem.
If you try to fix a crack with a patch, it might continue to widen. The patch won’t hold the sides together forever, and the crack will reappear and continue growing.
The time and costs of patching and repatching concrete can mount over the years. The sooner you can fix the underlying problem, the better results you can expect.
Concrete Polishing To Fix Damage
Once you have the underlying concrete issue solved, polishing the surface of the concrete prevents future damage. The polishing process seals and hardens the surface of the concrete, stopping moisture or chemicals from working their way into the slab.
Also, polished concrete is a beautiful flooring that lasts many decades. If you’re thinking of polishing your concrete floor, contact Ottawa Concrete Polishing today and let us know how we can help you!