How to Stain and Seal a Concrete Floor

If you have concrete floors in your home, consider finishing them instead of covering them traditional flooring. A concrete floor can be an excellent alternative to wood, and a sub floor can simply be stained and sealed once old flooring is removed.

The amount of work required to properly stain and seal the area will depend on how old it is. Newer concrete may require very little work before staining, while an older pour may require extensive refinishing and repair before beginning.

Remove any baseboards before attempting any work. After the trim has been removed, new concrete should require very little additional preparation before staining.

To prepare the area, remove any stains and clean the entire floor thoroughly. Stubborn stains should be removed with a wire brush. A wire brush head on a drill can also be used.

If the area was poured more than six months ago, it may require even more work before finishing. Repair any cracks using quick drying concrete. Remove any stains and fill in any chips as well.

If the area you are refinishing is excessively damaged, consider pouring a thin layer of concrete over the entire floor. This technique, though time consuming, will give you an excellent surface to stain.

Once the surface is as clean and even as possible, you must apply a primer sealer before staining. Check your home improvement store for a primer specifically made for your floor and apply it using a low matt roller. Work from one end of the area to the other to ensure even, overall coverage.

Once the primer has dried the full recommended time according to the manufacturer’s instructions, you should apply your stain. There are a wide variety of colors available, but keep in mind that it is often difficult to get a vibrantly colored stain.

You should apply the stain as you would apply paint on a wall, cutting in with a paintbrush around the entire perimeter. After the perimeter has been covered, use a roller to apply the rest of the stain. Take care to apply it evenly, and remember that several thin coats are preferable to a single thick coat.

It can take four to six hours for the stain to dry, so plan accordingly. Always follow the manufacturer’s directions on drying times to receive the best finish. Also take care that you are working in a well ventilated area, with a face mask and other safety equipment as needed.

Once the area is dry, apply several coats of sealant. Allow the floor to dry between each coat. When the desired finish is reached, you can reinstall your baseboards.

If you are considering pouring a concrete floor, think about adding a stain to the concrete mix. This has the added benefit of helping to disguise any chips that could mar the area. Patterns can also be stained into a concrete floor. Use heavy masking tape to mark out the pattern and add the stain using a small roller whenever possible. Paintbrushes often leave undesirable brush strokes.

Staining a concrete floor can be an inexpensive way of finishing a room. If you think that these floors are too sterile, consider adding rugs to order the space as well as add warmth. Concrete is notorious for being impervious to most damage, so nominal care should keep it looking like new.

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