Coloured Concrete: Details, Choices and Methods of Application
Coloured concrete has become one of the most widely used concrete treatments in use today. For the majority of people who like the look of decorative concrete surfaces like coloured concrete, one of the most appealing characteristics is that each and every project is completely one of a kind. Basic concrete can take on almost any shape, design, pattern or texture we can imagine. Though, the one attribute which makes it truly unique is colour. It can be used subtly to mix harmoniously with with nature or be very vibrant to create spectacular design message for onlookers.
Separating Big Areas with Colour Through Concrete
Honestly, unless one is a consistent minimalist and wants to look at concrete in its simple-gray colour, it is simply practical to improve it with some hues. There are so many different products for colouring concrete that choices are almost limitless. Lots of product makers offer a very wide range of hues and shades to select from for concrete colours. Even though we will probably have to invest a bit for colour through concrete, the great transformation from the dull to the fantastic is worth every penny. With the talents of a creative installer or painter, many colouring mediums allow a nearly unlimited array of ornamental effects. We can get simple earth-toned walkways and coloured floors in rooms which complement the environment we live in or bold coloured house floors which look like artwork.
In order to aid homeowners sort through the many choices, this article has compiled and will outline many of the most typical techniques for getting colour thru concrete and the surfaces it is most appropriate for. Apart from of integrally colour through concrete, any of these methods may be applied on newly cured and / or old and used concrete surfaces. Although, not all coloured concrete ways are appropriate for all kinds of exterior and interior exposure conditions or kinds of surfaces. A few may also have limits with regards to colour availability and magnitude. Though if we you select properly as seen in the last portion of this article, with subheading; Suggestions for Achieving the Best Results with colour thru concrete, we can have a deep, long lasting colour which will take our concrete from only being practical to looking amazing.
Why Choose Concrete Colours For Your Surfaces?
When we opt for concrete colours, the imaginative selections and many colour options are unlimited, allowing contractors to attain the look we want. Concrete colours will enhance any room or patio from simple and dull to amazing. A lot of colour makers for concrete provide a wide palette of colours to select from, everything from nature hues to bold tones.
Additionally, the concrete colours may be used to duplicate the appearance of bricks, flagstones, concrete pavers, or tiles of different designs. Concrete colours is not just a decorative design alternative, it is also quite economical and can be used with both newly cured and used or old concrete surfaces. By using the correct products, methods, and an experienced concreter we can get the right outcome which will transform that drab slab of gray into something amazing.
Many different colours can be utilized in combination or even one next to another to separate large areas of one whole piece of concrete. Moreover, colour can be used in conjunction with other decorative methods like stamping concrete, saw-cutting, brooming, or even sandblasting to create a look that’s more unique and even customized. One other alternative for separating big areas of colour thru concrete is by putting in other building materials like granite, marble, tile or even high quality glass or metals on the concrete colours’ surface.
Coloured Concrete with Hardener or Integral Colour
One of the oft-used ways to get coloured concrete is with colour hardeners. Here is an article which will discuss this specific method of colour through concrete. A long time quandary which coloured concrete installers experience is when they need to decide which colouring technique to use when stamping concrete surfaces. The usual options are colour hardening substances and integral colours. Both methods have their own merits and drawbacks, and here we will discuss both as well as the average expense, installation steps and permanence for the desired coloured concrete result.
Concrete Colours With Hardeners
Concrete colours via color-hardener’s methods and products have been applied for years for industrial floor uses like warehouses. For these usages, it was seen that because of heavy vehicular and foot traffic, the strength of the flooring has to be on the top layer the most. It was simply a hardener composed of cement along with metallic aggregate materials.
Concrete colours via hardeners develop when the metallic aggregate materials were substituted by mineral aggregates and by adding iron-oxide pigment paired with proprietary surfactant substances. The color-hardener is spread over or simply distributed over the concrete surface which is still soft and wet. This hardener moistens and is then effectively floated onto the concrete surface using a wood or magnesium float for concrete. Prior to stamping the surface a sealer is also applied using steel trowels or Fresno methods.
The main benefit of concrete colours hardener is its permanence. Colour-hardener is a layer which can reach an 8th of an inch in thickness and possess compression strength as high as 8,000 psi and that is two times as strong as the concrete base. This top layer has higher strength levels and is more wear proof than typical concrete; the top layer is also less porous, forbidding the invasion of excess water, harmful salts and stains or blemishes.
Other Benefits of Colour through Concrete Hardener
Next, the additional benefit of colour through concrete hardener is less expense. The average cost can be around 15 to 40 cents per square footage based on the colour and the coverage rate it has. Though, we should also consider at the cost of labor for applying it. Usually, 6 working hours are needed to distribute the color-hardner on about 500 square feet of concrete surface. Most of the working hours are only wasted when installers need to wait for the curing of the concrete. Usually, however, the labor costs can be reasonable.
2 of the main drawbacks of color hardener to attain coloure thru concrete are the debris it creates and also crusting at the surface. The debris can be managed by covering the whole project area with flexible polyurethane plastic. The surface crusting happens when there are low relative humidity levels and the outside is very windy. In a few situations, the presence of both can be quite intense which can inhibit the usage of colour-hardeners. When installers experience these conditions, they may use evaporation retarders that will prolong the moisture loss in the concrete slab. It’s not the sole solution to a problem like this, though we will reserve that for another discussion.
A coloured through concrete surface with integral colour is a mix of artificial iron-oxide pigment and surfactants also known as moisture agents. Integral colour is available in 3 common forms which are powdered base, liquid and granular forms. The usual kinds are powder and liquid forms. If either or is blended with cement at various loadings, it can create a coloured thru concrete surface depending on how thick the slab is.