Posts By: Sundek Coatings

Which Is Better for My Architectural Firm: Acid Stained Concrete or a Water-Based Stain?

Acid Stained Concrete Color Chart

Acid Stained Concrete Color Chart

As the owner of an architectural firm, you know the value of making a good first impression. When prospects visit for a consultation, the way your firm looks will either make them feel confident about using your services or nervous. After much debate, you decided on new stained decorative concrete. However, you now must decide if acid stained concrete is better than a water-based stain for your firm, or vice versa.

The fact is that both types of stains offer beautiful results, yet in very different ways. Therefore, it is not so much about which one is better, just which one produces the effects that you prefer. By learning the differences between water- and acid stained concrete, you will have a much easier time making the right decision for your architectural firm.

With an acid-based stain, the finished surface is translucent and variegated. In this case, once the stain gets applied to the surface, it penetrates. At that point, the stain reacts with chemical compounds in the concrete, which is what causes the variegated effect. Not only is the color of this stain permanent because of the penetration within the concrete, but the aesthetics are one of a kind due to how the stain reacts to the concrete’s chemical compounds.

In comparison, a water-based stain works similar to a wood stain and adds color to the surface of the concrete.  The significant difference between the two is the water-based product does not have a chemical reaction to the concrete but simply penetrates and deposits it color.  The benefit of using a water-based stain is that you have far more control of the color and more of an ability to hide surface imperfections.

To help you decide whether water or acid stained concrete makes the most sense, you need to figure out the overall aesthetics that you like the most. Also, if you have a particular color in mind, you need to look at the two options to see which one matches the closest. 

How to Transform the Appearance of Restaurant Flooring with a Stamped Overlay

Stamped overlay patterns

Stamped overlay in a restaurant

Are you tired of the boring floors in your restaurant? Do you feel embarrassed by the lack of personality and character that your current floors provide? Do you want to give your guests the best dining experience possible? If you answered yes to any of these questions, you should consider a stamped overlay floor at your restaurant.

With a stamped overlay, the sky is the limit. Not only can you choose one color or texture, but you can have a professional installer apply a combination of several. Either way, the aesthetics of your new floors will blow you and your guests away.

In addition to an enhanced appearance, your new flooring solution will bolster functionality. As an example, with a textured epoxy overlay, the floors become slip resistant, which decreases the risk of someone falling and sustaining an injury.

Also, when choosing an epoxy stamped overlay, your employees will experience less muscle fatigue. This type of floor is beautiful, versatile, robust, and long lasting. However, it also is more comfortable to walk and stand on. Another benefit is that epoxy is highly resistant to spills, stains, impact, and more, making this an all-around excellent choice.

With so much versatility, a stamped overlay can change the overall atmosphere of your restaurant. With this type of overlay, a professional installer can create a surface that resembles genuine slate, flagstone, brick, wood, river rock, cobblestone, and more. For something extra-special, you can choose to have more than one stamp applied. For instance, you might make the main dining floor look like river rock with added cobblestone borders or designs.

A stamped overlay also comes in a broad range of color options. Because of that, you can choose whatever coordinates with your style of restaurant. Whether your establishment is casual or high-end, there is a perfect color or color combination to match.

Top Reasons for Choosing Concrete Resurfacing for a Pool Deck

Pool deck ready for a new look

If you know of anyone who had an existing pool deck ripped out and a new one installed, you recognize that this is not a situation that you ever want to face. For your pool deck, you may not require that process. If the surface of your pool deck only has minor damage, or perhaps none at all, a much better option is concrete resurfacing.

A common misconception is that if someone wants to change the aesthetics or functionality of a pool deck with minimal to no damage, the only choice is to have a new one installed. In reality, that surface can get repaired and resurfaced to meet your exact design specifications. If your pool deck has a few cracks and pits or you want a different color, texture, or pattern, concrete resurfacing is the ideal solution.

Pool deck concrete resurfacing

Pool deck after Sundek concrete resurfacing

For one thing, installing a pool deck requires a lot of work, which means having numerous people milling about your backyard for weeks, if not months. In comparison, concrete resurfacing using Classic Texture, Tuscan, or some other quality system takes just days to complete. As a result, your pool gets done faster so that everyone can enjoy it.

Also, pool deck concrete resurfacing is less messy. Especially for a large deck, a new installation requires a total rip-out, followed by preparing the ground and then pouring the new concrete. That process leaves a mess. With resurfacing, nothing gets torn out. Instead, an overlay gets applied, which creates a beautiful and highly functional surface.

Concrete resurfacing of your pool deck is also advantageous in that you can choose from a broad range of colors, transforming its appearance. The installer can produce unique designs using score lines, saw cuts, aggregates, and various textures. Not only will the surface look fantastic, it can even be made slip resistant and, therefore, safer.

What Is the Process for Installing a Concrete Overlay?

Installing a concrete overlay

Installing a concrete overlay

Although you might have heard that the number of people choosing a concrete overlay instead of new pour has skyrocketed in recent years, you might not fully understand the actual installation process. Installing an overlay is not rocket science. However, for the best results, it does require experience, expertise and quality products.

  • High-Quality Product – Before the installation of a concrete overlay, you should hire a professional contractor or installer who uses only the best available products, like SunStone, an architectural limestone coating; SunStamp, a beautifully stamped overlay; and Classic Texture, the original acrylic spray-on decorative solution.
  • Surface Preparation – Next, the installer preps the surface, which is the most critical step. As part of that, cracks, pits, and any other type of damage get fixed. Then, the surface is properly cleaned and allowed to thoroughly dry.
  • Product Mixing – Following the manufacturer’s instructions, the installer mixes the product. In some cases, the product is not just mixed but also blended with color, which means during the mixing, the product can have integral color added to it.
  • Application – Depending on the chosen product and the preferred look, the installer uses the proper application method, whether that entails spraying, rolling, troweling or stamping.  In the case of a self-leveling concrete overlay, this usually gets placed using a squeegee or gage-rake. 
  • Patterns and Texturing – For patterns, the installer can create saw cuts, score lines, and other beautiful designs. Using hand-trowels, rakes, and a host of other specialty tools, the desired texture gets created.
  • Curing and Sealing – Once the newly installed concrete overlay cures, a sealer gets applied for added protection, greater strength, and enhanced stain resistance.

Once the installation is finished, which is no more than two to three days in most cases, the surface is ready to enjoy.

Stamped Pool Deck: Transforming an Ordinary Outdoor Space into Something Extraordinary

Stamped Pool Deck

Stamped Pool Deck

A backyard swimming pool is a great place to relax and unwind after a long day at work. In addition, the pool is the perfect place for family gatherings and parties with friends. Instead of something ordinary, an increasing number of people are choosing stamped pool decks. This decorative concrete surface transforms an ordinary outdoor space into something extraordinary.

With a high-quality product, like SunStamp, you have almost endless possibilities for colors, textures, and patterns. If you want to enhance the appearance of your pool area, this is an excellent solution. To aid in the selection process, consider factors like the size of your backyard, the size and shape of the pool, the type of landscaping and lighting, and even architectural features of your home.

Stamped pool decks come in a broad range of options, making it easy to choose something that coordinates with a particular theme or decor. If you want your backyard space to look luxurious, a stamped surface that replicates expensive flagstone or slate is perfect. On the other hand, if the area is more casual or rustic, then a stamped pattern that mimics brick would probably be a better solution.

Along with visual appeal, stamped pool decks are reliable, durable, long lasting, and even safe. With the right formula, the surface becomes slip resistant. With better footing, there is less risk of someone slipping and sustaining an injury. Another benefit is that stamped concrete resists both chemicals and moisture, two things associated with a swimming pool that would wreak havoc on a more conventional surface. Because stamped pool decks are resistant to stains, you never have to worry if one of your guests accidentally drops food or a drink.

With this decorative concrete surface, the look and feel of your outdoor space change dramatically for the better. For optimal results, your pool deck should be professionally sealed.