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How to Care for Your Concrete Countertops
Whether you love or hate the «worn in» glance, you should know how best to care for your counters. You’ll desire to reseal every one to three years. «Avoid abrasive cleaners and scrubbers that can damage sealer,» Havenly’s Head of Design, Shelby Girard, tells «To prevent stains, use cutting boards, and clean up messes quickly.
Wax countertops monthly once sealed to prevent stains.»
Pros and Cons of Concrete Countertops
Pro: Concrete is durable. The strength of the cement-and-sand stir alone has some hailing it as a rock solid (we had to) design choice. After every, concrete is made up of the same material found in sidewalks.
Con:But it can crack. Does the thought of a hairline fracture make you cringe?
That’s a risk that comes along with concrete countertops, most commonly when poured in put rather than pre-cast. Of course, you can prevent cracks to a certain extent by adding fiber reinforcement, rebar, and/or wire mesh. Still, cracks happen, whether because of pressure or the natural settling of the home.
Pro: Cracks can be fixed. Thankfully, those fractures are generally not super noticeable and beautiful simple to repair.
Con: Concrete is susceptible to stains and scratches. Concrete is notorious for flaunting flaws—the most common complaint of unhappy homeowners.
That’s because the porous substance can absorb liquids and even bacterial growth, which is why it’s incredibly significant to seal the surface upon installation.
In theory, sealing will make your counters stain-, scratch- and heat-resistant. But in reality, even sealed concrete will show markings, especially spills love olive oil, red wine, juice, or coffee. Something as simple as water spots might result in a beautiful sloppy style that would drive a Type A person crazy.
Pro: So is basically everything else. You won’t discover anything on the market that’s indestructible. Yes, concrete can scratch and stain, but so can beautiful much every other material, including granite and marble. While some may be bothered by the imperfections, others love the rustic glance and embrace the wealthy patina that develops over time.
The bottom line? If you’re looking for perfection, you might desire to glance elsewhere. But if you love the rugged aesthetic and are passionate about patina, go ahead and give it a attempt.
Just do your research, and make certain you do the maintenance.
Concrete floors for airiness
It might seem counterintuitive to lean on such a heavy material to add lightness to a space. But concrete lends an ethereal feel. Its color and texture is low-key lunar, and its smooth surface helps any room feel open. This works beautifully in a bathroom where you desire to instill a zen, spa-like atmosphere. Its also grand for offices and dining rooms that need to feel spacious even when filled with people.
Don’t Crack Under the Pressure
Cheng Concrete Sealer
Concrete Countertop Wax
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Wood Cutting Board
Being a fan of the semi industrial glance, I’ve loved polished concrete since I first picked up Fu Tung Cheng’s book on the subject, ‘Concrete Countertops’.
Recently I poured some new concrete floors with the intention of polishing them; here’s a bit of information on how I did it. The post is intentionally brief.
I’m fairly passionate about the subject so I urge you to enquire any questions you might own and I’ll do my best to impart some of my knowledge of the subject.
If you already own concrete floors then you’re off to a excellent start. In this case I didn’t. There was originally an ground floor in this part of the home, so I needed to pour new concrete. The benefit of this was that I was capable to make the floor perfectly flat to within a tolerance of just a few millimetres; this meant that there was less work to do to polish the floor.
Using what are called expansion joints or ‘joints de dilatation’ — I was capable to level the floor off with a screed batten extremely easily.
The joints function as a guide when sliding the batten across the surface thus ensuring an precise and level finish. That is, assuming you fixed them in put correctly!
This photo is obviously from another occupation but hopefully you can see how I’m using the joints to create the level surface. Large concrete surfaces will require these joints to control cracking in any case, so installed love this they act out a secondary purpose.
Here, the central panel is poured and curing, the next day I will finish either side. If you attempt to do it every in one day you’ll damage the surface with the screed batten.
Don’t attempt to polish concrete until it’s at least 4 days ancient, the surface will come away too readily and it will be harder to achieve a grand finish.
As you can see, the floor is nice and flat, there are still pits and divots in it though, so the first stage of the polishing process is actually grinding the surface away.
This will firstly make it perfectly flat but it will also expose the aggregates within the concrete. These coloured stones will then be visible in the final finish; this is what makes it attractive and exciting to glance at. Without this stage you would simply be polishing the extremely fine sand and cement portion of the concrete and you would be left with a plain grey floor surface.
This stage is extremely significant. Take your time and make certain you haven’t missed anything. During this phase it is extremely hard to see the surface if you are using a wet polishing technique as I did here.
The quantity of slurry generated makes it impossible to see how you’re doing. You own to stop frequently and clear the floor with a squeegee.
The machine I used was this marble polisher from Kiloutou, it comes with the grind wheel (attached) and various diverse grades of polishing pads. The grind wheel stage is hard work. This is not a machine designed to polish concrete and as such, you own to lift it to get it to spin on the extremely rough concrete. Subsequent stages don’t require this. I did this a couple of years ago, and I notice they now own more specific concrete polishing equipment available in some branches including dry polishers which will be required in cases where water can’t be used.
Dry polishers are used in conjunction with an industrial vacuum cleaner to hold the dust to a minimum.
Working methodically and with progressively finer grade pads, the surface was polished to a fairly high sheen.
You can go much further than I did with this and finish up with a mirror finish, just love marble.!(upload://)The surface is still fairly dark after a day or so due to the quantity of water required.
You can see the little stones in this image, the more grinding you do in the first phase the larger the aggregates will appear in the finished product, as you can see from the images under taken at the fabulous hotel ‘Aire de Bardenas’.
Some of the aggregates in those floors are so large they must own been cut in half and placed manually before polishing.
Hotel Aire de Bardenas images below!(upload://)
Polishing concrete is becoming more favorite exterior of the US where it has been employed widely for fairly some time and as a result, polishing equipment is becoming available to hire making this a potential DIY occupation.
Given the cost of more traditional floor finishes it is potentially on a par and with careful planning could easily cost less than a tiled surface. It is certainly an unusual and unique option so, would you own a go or do you prefer a more traditional finish?
The design world is boiling for concrete correct now. Its not only one of s biggest design trends, its equal parts sleekness and sturdiness. Plus, its cheap and simple to maintain. Need we tell more?
Just to be safe, we will. Concrete just might be your most eco-friendly flooring option.
If theres already a concrete slab in your home or apartment, every you need to do is own it sanded and sealed. You need only minimal additional materials, meaning your impact on the environment is tiny. Whats more, concrete lasts a endless time — were talking centuries. Thats why so numerous homes use it as the base for their flooring. If you desire durable, chic flooring thats simple to hold up, glance no further than concrete floors.
Here are a few examples of how to nail the slab-as-flooring trend.
The versatility of concrete
If you ponder concrete is boring, ponder again. Thanks to stains, stamps and colors, concrete flooring can be just about anything you desire it to be. Maybe you desire to stamp leaf patterns into your entryway to lean into the nature vibe. Maybe you desire to stain your floors with high gloss for additional sleekness.
Or maybe you desire to add a visually exciting accent, love the one pictured above. Gray concrete slabs are just the beginning.
Concrete Counters: To DIY or Not to DIY?
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The cost of concrete countertops will depend on if you go the DIY route or own them professionally installed (either pre-cast or poured in place)—and how much personalization you desire. Concrete can be cast into any shape and pigmented, stained, or textured with every kinds of shades and finishes; you can even embed tiles, stones, etc.
According to , the average cost per square foot is $65 to $, and the average cost of installation is $40 to $50 per hour, per person.
Consider how quickly you need them, too: Once poured, it takes 28 days for concrete counters to fully cure.