Polished Concrete for Manufacturing & Logistics

Apr 18, 2024 | Concrete Dusting, Polished Concrete Floors

This article will explain in detail why polished concrete flooring is optimal for dry manufacturing and logistics facilities. It provides a breakdown of how polished concrete meets the following key requirements of industrial facilities.

  • Minimize Dust
  • Improve Durability
  • Reduce maintenance
  • Sustainable
  • Professional Appearance

Eliminate Concrete Dusting

Concrete polishing eliminates concrete dusting – a common and troublesome problem whereby concrete floors release dust. The concrete polishing process involves several steps that remediate and prevent concrete dusting.

  1. In the case of used floors, coarse grinding steps remove the contaminated, carbonated surface concrete, exposing the good concrete below. For new concrete, the cream (the concrete paste that floats to the top) is ground off, exposing hard, fine aggregates.
  1. A penetrating chemical is applied to the concrete to harden, densify, and dust-proof the surface which protects against future dusting.
  1. Polishing steps create a glass-like surface that reduces carbon dioxide absorption and prevents harmful substances from bonding to the surface. 

These three processes ensure a dust free, clean concrete floor. See our in-depth article on concrete dusting here.

Improved Concrete Durability

The concrete polishing process results in a surface with higher density and abrasion resistance, which translates into increased durability. This is achieved through two processes. 

  1. A chemical process used during the grinding and polishing process increases the surface density by converting latent calcium hydroxide (naturally present in the concrete) into calcium silicate hydrate – which is a stronger and more durable material. This can increase the surfaces’ abrasion resistance by up to 60%. 
  1. The concrete polishing steps above 200 grit progressively build a glass-like surface that is extremely durable and abrasion resistant. The thicker the glass like material is, the longer the floor will last. A full polishing process using high grade diamond tools will produce a very durable floor.

The glass-like surface can be replaced when worn out by re-polishing the concrete. 

Concrete floors achieve higher durability when the concrete is polished early in the life of the floor.

Reduced Floor Maintenance

Polished concrete floors have substantially lower maintenance requirements compared to untreated or epoxy coated concrete floors. 

  1. A professional polishing process (as mentioned above) creates a glass-like surface on the concrete – it has Teflon-like properties that prevent materials from sticking to the surface, giving polished concrete its ability to resist forklift tire marks and other elements that would soil the surface. It also makes it very easy to clean and maintain. 
  1. A high-quality chemical densifier provides increased stain resistance and surface density, making the floor less susceptible to harmful elements. 
  1. Polished concrete floors typically don’t need to be re-polished for 5-10 years depending on traffic and maintenance, with the exception of ultra-high traffic areas which may need to be re-polished sooner. They also keep a like-new appearance longer than surface coatings or untreated concrete. 

Polished concrete requires less maintenance than other flooring options – this means lower cost and fewer disruptions over the life of the floor. 

Corporate Sustainability

Polished concrete is the most sustainable flooring option for businesses. It uses the existing concrete as the floor which negates the need to manufacture a new flooring material. This saves resources and minimizes the environmental impact.

A diamond grinding and polishing process transforms the existing concrete into an aesthetically beautiful, low maintenance surface. The process has a low carbon footprint and uses minimal resources. 

Epoxy is a common alternative to polished concrete but it has the downside of being environmentally unfriendly. On the global warming index, epoxy is approximately 189X the impact of polished concrete, as published by Eneref Institute. 

Professional Appearance

Polished concrete is best known for its appearance because it dramatically transforms dull, dusty concrete to bright, clean flooring.

Its relatively neutral appearance makes it suitable for a wide range of applications, from manufacturing to retail. 

Polished floors can increase the ambient light by up to 30% by reflecting light back up into the space. This can reduce the amount of lighting required for a space or increase the brightness. Studies have shown that brighter work spaces are more productive and safe.

Summary

Industrial polished concrete reduces the time and cost burden while upholding high standards of productivity, cleanliness and safety. It has the lowest cost of ownership over the life of a floor while maintaining an excellent aesthetic appearance. It also contributes to achieving sustainability targets.

For a free assessment of your facility, call or email us today: (647) 544-4143, sales@polishedconcrete1.com