If you’re planning to convert your grassy backyard into an outdoor living space, one of the considerations that you might have is what building material to use for your flooring. As much as possible, you’d want the new space to be beautiful, but you also need to make sure that it can withstand wear and tear. In the engineering and architectural world, one of the most popular and established materials used in building construction is concrete. Concrete or masonry projects have many advantages over other alternative construction materials, including the following:
Strength and Durability
In addition to concrete, some of the most common building materials used in masonry include brick, stucco, and stone. These materials are highly resistant to damage and bug infestation, making them durable. Due to this, masonry building materials will allow you to save on maintenance and repair costs.
Concrete possesses high-insulation properties that make it fire-resistant and non-combustible. In some cases, concrete is used to protect steel structures from fire exposure.
High Load-Bearing Capacity
Concrete provides stable support which makes it reliable in constructing residential and commercial buildings. Concrete can support roofing structures, additional floors, and can resist strong wind and heavy snow.
Masonry or concrete works can last for a very long time and what makes them a more practical choice in home improvement projects is that they can now also be designed to look like wood, marble, or stone. This process is called concrete staining, which is one of the services offered by masonry companies and construction firms. Below are the different types of concrete stains that can help transform your concrete flooring into visually appealing art pieces.
Acid-based stains are composed of water, hydrochloric acid, and acid-soluble metallic salts. Unlike paint, when acid stains are applied to the surface of concrete, they become a permanent part of the concrete, and won’t fade, chip off, or peel. If you prefer earth tones like tan, brown or terra cotta, acids stains are a great choice.
Acrylic, epoxy and polyurethane are some of the popular film-forming stains used in concrete staining. Film-forming stains are available in solvent-based and water-based versions, offering concrete surfaces a protective barrier against moisture. Film-forming stains are easy to apply and dry quickly because they are simply coated on the surface of the concrete to add color. However, they can peel, fade, or flake over time or when exposed to chemicals, harsh weather conditions, and heavy traffic.
If you’re aiming for shine, solvent-based acrylic stains are the ideal choice, compared to water-based stains, because solvent-based acrylic stains provide a glossier finish that enhances the color of the concrete’s surface. Stains thicker than acrylic, like polyurethane and epoxy are more suitable for commercial concrete because they are more resistant to chemicals and abrasion.
Stains that are a more permanent alternative to film-forming stains are penetrating stains. They are composed of water-based, polymer-bonded formula. Similar to acid stains, penetrating stains go deeper into the concrete which minimizes flaking or peeling. However, unlike acid stains that are limited to earth colors, penetrating stains are available in a broad range of colors, from light, translucent ones to bold and bright hues.
Now that you are familiar with the different stains that can be coated on your concrete floor, you will be able to choose which one will be suitable for your outdoor living space. Getting in touch with a masonry services company will help you better understand the unique features of each option so you can make a better decision.