When it comes to aesthetics, concrete may not even make it to the list of appealing paving and flooring materials. Although there are some who like its industrial appeal, some people who love to have it colored. Of all coloring mediums for concrete, stains are the most popular because:
- It penetrates into the slab that’s why it won’t flake, peel, or fade away
- Stains are affordable
- It comes in two kinds: acid and water-based
- Stains can be used on plain and resurfaced concrete
- It comes in a wide range of colors.
Acid and Water-based Stains
Acid stains are reactive stains that create chemical reactions when it encounters the mineral and lime content of a concrete slab. The effect often involves mottled colors and effects that can make concrete look like stone, wood, or even leather. Water-based stains, on the other hand, produce more solid colors and no chemical reactions at all.
Concrete Stains Over Colored Concrete
Now that you understand what stained concrete is, the question is “will it work on a concrete slab that has already been pre-colored?” The short answer is yes. It can still penetrate the slab and the color you choose will still manifest. However, there are important things you must remember if you plan to use a concrete stain to color a colored concrete surface.
- If you plan to use a different color from the one that the concrete already has, the resulting color may vary. The color may mix or it may look like a multicolor floor. To get a glimpse of how it would look like, test the stain on an inconspicuous area on the concrete.
- Choose water-based stain over the acid type. Since an acid stain reacts with the concrete, the colors and effect may be unpredictable. Also, acid stains dry in a semi-translucent color so the color underneath may still pop up after rinsing. Water-based stain dries in a more solid color so the previous will most likely be colored by the new layer.
- Before staining, grind off the top layer of the concrete if it has been sealed. This is to make sure that the stain gets absorbed by the concrete. This will also help in making the previous color less pronounced.