There are many reasons to consider concrete staining and at Fuller Concrete Staining we find that many people understand how important it is. However, we also find that many homeowners or businessowners believe they can handle it on their own. Keep reading for seven reasons that it is worth it to hire professional concrete companies for concrete sealing and staining.
- The Right Tools Are Required
- Surface Prep is Essential
- We Have Product Knowledge
- There Are Potentially Dangerous Chemicals Involved
It is true that the tools needed for most concrete staining are fairly basic but that does not mean that you know how to shop for them. Do you know what type of stain to buy? What type of mop, roller, or squeegee should be used for each product and how to use them? If not, you should hire the professionals.
No matter if you are staining old or brand-new concrete, one of the most important steps is to prep it correctly. For new concrete, this requires fully curing it. For existing concrete, there are issues such as its past exposure to weather, spills, and chemicals, along with its level of wear and tear. Paint and coatings can mask just about anything but stains are translucent and this prep is very important.
Do you know off the top of your head if acid-based or water-based stain is best for your needs? What about non-reactive stains, or permanent chemical bonds? What do these terms mean? When you work with the pros, you are working with people how know these products inside and out.
You may be working with an acid-based stain, which can be corrosive and dangerous. If used incorrectly or without the proper safety precautions it could cause irritation to the eyes and skin. You will also need to know how to safely and legally dispose of any leftover chemicals.
Stain is permanent
Keep in mind that once the stain is down, the color is permanent and there’s no going back. Color samples should always be done on the concrete you plan to stain to get a truer representation of how that particular surface will take the stain. Unlike paint, stains penetrate the surface, making future color changes quite difficult. Surrounding areas must be carefully masked off to avoid unintentional staining since acid stains can be tough and sometimes impossible to remove. Be careful when masking, because adhesive from tape may pull color off concrete that has already been stained or leave behind a residue that prevents the stain from reacting properly with unstained concrete.
Compatibility and sealers
Stained concrete should be sealed for protection. Sealers will vary based on their compatibility with the stain that is used. Acid-based stains require residue to be removed and the surface to be neutralized with T.S.P., baking soda or ammonia before sealers can be applied. If this is not done properly, your sealer won’t be able to form a proper bond with the concrete.
Ambient conditions such as temperature, humidity and air flow can affect the drying and curing times.
If you’re still convinced this is a job you want to take on, here’s more information on How To Stain Concrete.
But, if you have any doubts, especially if the slab is large, requires extensive surface preparation, or incorporates multiple colors and elaborate decorative effects, you should hire the services of an expert.