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Can Concrete be Coloured?

If the traditional colour of grey for Concrete is not appealing to you, there is no need to worry! It is possible to add colour to Concrete. There are four different methods you can use to achieve coloured Concrete. Those methods are staining, colouring Concrete integrally, using a colour hardener. In this blog, we will go over the advantages and disadvantages of each method.

Staining Concrete: Acid & Water based Stain

Staining concrete is one of the most common methods for adding colour to Concrete. Staining Concrete can be used on both new and old Concrete. Some of the benefits of staining Concrete are. It is highly durable, meaning it won't stain easily if the sealer is applied regularly, it's low maintenance and won't require much upkeep, and it's also the most economically smart option. Be sure to keep up with your sealer to ensure the longevity of it. Another advantage is, it can be stained after pouring, even a few years down the road. Acid stain is not recommended on floors older the 5+ years, always do a test sample prior. If you have old, weathered concrete, its best to use a water based stain instead.

Some negatives come with staining Concrete; It can weaken your floors rather than strengthen them if its not applied properly. This entails more to applying acid stain to early and incorrectly, and call attention to any pre-existing stains on the concrete flooring. It's as well not the easiest project to take on by yourself as there are multiple steps involved.

Colouring Concrete integrally:

Integrally pouring Concrete is only possible when it is fresh Concrete, and the desired colour is added to the concrete truck. This advantage is because the colour will not be worn, chipped away, or faded. Another advantage is that much like staining, Concrete is low maintenance.

However, the most significant disadvantage of colouring Concrete integrally is it is not UV stable, meaning the colour will fade when it is exposed to high amounts of UV light. So it is very important to keep up with your sealing regularly. Sealer is recommended to be applied every 2-3 years, or once its starts to wear on the surface.

Colour Hardener:

Colour hardener is the best method to add and strengthen colour to Concrete. Another advantage is it's more resistant to wear and less vulnerable to moisture and chemicals.

A significant disadvantage of colour hardening is that the dry shake powder used can become airborne, which can be harmful to any plants, structures, or those with breathing problems nearby. It is also very hard to work into the surface as it needs to be trowelled in. In order to get the full advantages of the colour hardener at the full strength is to apply it at 60lbs per 100sqft.

Coloured Sealers:

Coloured sealers are another temporary way to colour your concrete. Its temporary because it is a wearable product. You can use the Colourcrete as soon as the concrete has been fully cured (28 days) – If you needed something sooner, you could always use the Tinta’ Seal in the Cure and Seal Sealer. These can be found in the links below or by contacting your specialist at Unicon Concrete Specialties.