Category: Commercial Project

How To’s – Sealing Concrete

The life of your concrete is largely dependent on the environmental factors that it is subject to. Some basic, common sense practices, can help to extend the life of your concrete, and increase the amount of time between maintenances. First, it cannot be stressed strongly enough that, despite common misconception, concrete does need to be maintained. Most people think that because it is a hard, durable, surface, there is no need to maintain it or take care of it. As a result, most concrete surfaces are exposed to some of the worst factors that it can be placed under. A different way to think of it would be similar to comparing concrete to the paint on a newly purchased car.

No new-car owner expects that he will drive his car off the lot and never have to maintain it the rest of his life. Yet, the car is subject to most (if not all) of the same factors that your concrete is subject to, and yet rarely do we take care of our concrete to same degree as we do our car. (Be honest…when was the last time you washed and cleaned your concrete to the same degree you did your car?) As the result, our concrete looks old, dingy, cracked, scratched, and generally poor, yet we expect it to still remain new despite the abuse we place on it. To really get the look and life from our concrete, we need to change our way of thinking, and with some slight behavior modifications,the look we desire can remain for a longer time. Here are some suggested methods to help extend the look of your concrete:

 

     1. Accept that your concrete needs to be maintained. If you don’t do it, it isn’t going to get done, and the result will be something that is the opposite of what you desire. You paid good money to get it looking good…take care of it like it is worth the money you spent on it! However, no matter how well you take care of the concrete, there will come a time when it needs to be revitalized. Schedule into your budget a maintenance fee. Talk with your contractor and determine a realistic time-frame for a thorough cleaning and re-staining. Many times having the maintenance done frequently is substantially cheaper than waiting for years, and in some cases, some contractors will have a maintenance fee which is relatively cheap to encourage the customer to do frequent maintenance.

 

     2. Treat your concrete like any other surface that is subject to the environmental conditions in which you live. If there is a lot of moisture, try to keep as much off as you can. An all-weather awning will help prevent pitting and erosion from heavy rains and snow. For those hot summer months, the awning will also help to keep the concrete cool – this helps prevent excessive, drastic, movement of the concrete, and this in turn helps to minimize cracking. Especially for concrete surrounded by landscaping, keep the concrete as clean as you can. Trim and clip plants back so leaves and dirt aren’t sitting on the concrete and staining the surface. If leaves or other similar residue does accumulate on the concrete, sweep or blow it off. Most stains result from dirt or residue from landscaping plants that are either next to, or over, the concrete.

 

     3. Occasionally clean the concrete – maintain it as best as you can. Establish a regular schedule for cleaning and maintaining the concrete. Some people have determined that rinsing the concrete every time they mow the lawns helps them to remember to clean up any messes. The schedule can be as frequent, or as infrequent, as you want to make it. However, remember that the longer it goes, the sooner it will need to be re-stained. The longer residue sits on concrete, the more likely that a stain will occur. Also, in some regions of the world, moisture can result in fungus and
mold growing in the pores of the concrete.

 

The only way to remove these microbes is to use chemicals or pressure washers. Establishing a maintenance schedule can help you factor in the methods you need to take to clean your concrete. When cleaning off concrete, most of the time it can be effectively done with water and a soft-bristled broom. Medium or hard-bristled brooms can leave small scratches, that over time will cause the surface to deteriorate. In most cases there is no need to use chemicals, but if persistent stains do occur, don’t use harsh chemicals without first consulting your contractor or NewLook. Some chemicals will cause irreparable damage to NewLook products and to your concrete.

 

     4. In instances where stains occur as a result of landscaping or vehicles, the concrete should be cleaned with the help of NewLook’s Concrete Cleaner and Degreaser. Oil spills, especially, will result in permanent, unsightly stains. The sooner the oil or residue is removed, the less likely a permanent stain will result. NewLook products have no VOC’s, and as such, are safe for the environment. Follow the recommended methods for cleaning using NewLook products.

 

     5. Schedule a maintenance visit from your contractor before the surface, and look, have become too damaged. Despite our best efforts, concrete can get damaged and stained beyond our ability to clean it. If, and when, that occurs, have your contractor return and re-apply another layer of NewLook stains. The more layers of stain on the surface, the less need there is for heavy maintenance. In some cases, there are enough coatings of stain on the concrete so that nothing more than a simple pressure washing and re-sealing is needed to revitalize the concrete.

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Posted on admin Posted in Commercial Project, Concrete, Decorative Concrete, DIY Project, Endura Solid Stain

Original Stain System vs. Endura Stain System from Jaime Villagomez

 
 


Jaime Villagomez, our CEO, was asked to explain Original Stain system vs Endura Stain:
Here are a few thoughts about the differences between the two systems.
Flexibility in Use
Our original solid stain is a workhorse and does a great job but we wanted to create a product that could be as good or better that had no pot life and was a single component. Both systems were designed to be offered in Solid Color, Semi-Transparent or Translucent. We call the non-solid versions Enhancers in the original system; Semi-Transparent is Designer Series Enhancer and Tranlucent is Enhancer and used in antiquing stamped surfaces or very subtle stain. We have the same for Endura system but we have added another semi-transparent called Faux Fusion which gives more intensity but also more transparency like a traditional acid stain look.

A few key points:

Endura Solid Highlights

  1. single component (allows for easy touch ups without having to mix a kit)
  2. no pot life (original has 5 hour pot life)
  3. must still be mixed before use to pull up pigments but they suspend better (less mixing but still necessary)
  4. can be brushed, rolled or airless spray (original solid can only be brushed) – roll or airless spray on smoother surfaces – brush or spray on textured like a stamp.
  5. does not need to be worked as much as original with backbrushing (although a little may be necessary)
  6. Endura Solid is not nearly as opaque in the lighter colors but probably 90-95% as original
  7. dry time – both dry pretty fast in regular summer applications. Recoat generally within the hour. But do not go too soon on either system or you’ll end up re-emulsifying the first coat and removing it a bit as you try to apply the second. Also don’t wait too long for recoat. Intercoat adhesion is often about timing.

Endura Faux Fusion Highlights

  1. we have recreated standard acid stain colors and it gives the effect pretty easy due to specialty pigments.
  2. very low build and easy to work with
  3. Excellent as the stand alone antiquing aid on Stamped surfaces or with several different faux fusion colors
  4. Can be sprayed, brushed or used with many techniques

Does the Endura system need to be sealed?

  1. It will do fine in many environments wihtout a sealer given it is a blend of urethane and acrylic but we recommend sealing
  2. Has UV blockers and other special high performance resins to have great durability and uv stability. We see it outperforming original in color lasting.
  3. It is easier to recommend to seal all things as sometimes it definitely needs sealer to protect from environment or wear and tear.
  4. Original system we didn’t always require it of solid color but should have as many times its fine but sometimes its a good idea. Just easier to say to seal all the time with Endura and user can decide if environment doesn’t need it due to low impact such as vertical or residential patio etc.
  5. Using water-based sealer is preferred to solvent based. Solvent based sealers are like acrylic swimming in a pot of paint stripper. When you apply the paint stripper it will soften and start to weaken the stains or undercoats and then when it evaporates it allows to harden. Water-based stains and other products need more cure time 48 hours probably before a solvent can be applied or it can mess with the cure. Water-based sealers however, can go on after an hour as they are more compatible.

Price

  1. Endura is less expensive per square foot – closer to 30 cents per square foot vs 40 cents when purchased in a 5 gallon pail. Leaves budget for sealer.
  2. Endura Faux Fusion can compete with acid stain at about 15 cents per square foot (+/-). Obviously depending on use.
  3. Where is Original system better?

  4. When needing to hide a lighter color – it does a better job but another coat of Endura will get you there as well.
  5. Using an Enhancer over Solid color. When anitquing an enhancer over solid, the enhancer flows a bit better. We are working on this for the endura. We built in some protective properties into the Endura but it causes some an endura enhancer to flow off of it more into the puddles creating greater contrast. As such we recommend using straight Faux Fusion or Endura Enhancer onto a stamped project or the original system. (we are working on this to improve ease of enhancing with a translucent)

Problems – What problems have we had?

  1. Our first batch had a bit of a problem with a super-wetter (an ingredient that helps the stain penetrate well) that caused a bit more difficulty making an even solid color. Not sure what happened – its so powerful that we may have slightly overdosed it..very little is required. We removed it from the formula and went back to our traditional wetting aid which is working great.
  2. We have had problems with people overworking it – trying to apply it like the original but its not. The original solid due to the powder pigments requires back brushing to spread evenly the color – working it in is less about penetration and more about even color application. The Endura Solid does not need as much. If using a brush perhaps one application and a backbrushing for evening things out one or two passes..then let it set. Overworking is not good.

Prep – Endura as original needs proper prep. Clean and porous surfaces not applied when its too hot or too cold.

  1. Endura is better applied to a dry surface not wet or damp. Original was a bit more tolerant.
  2. Using Eco-Acid Plus: cleaner, degreaser, and exfoliating cleaner (light etch) is always helpful.

Tips:

  1. Get to know the product and its attributes. Every product has its personality so play with it in a small area first to know what best application methods and tools are.
  2. Make sure you prep well. Accomplish the result don’t just go throught the motions.
  3. Stick with a system – Use EnduraSealers as they are most compatible.

The bottom line: We have been very successful with both systems. We created Endura as an answer to the requests from contractors that wanted a system they could trust their summer help to do – with less mixing and easier to do big projects with an airless sprayer. We also wanted to improve durabiltiy, hot tire resistance, uv stability, no pot life and a slew of other items.
In some cases Original Solid is great as its been proven for many years on countless of global projects. When this product has failed its often been due to 1) prep 2) concrete failure and 3) should have been sealed and was not.

For Endura – we seem to have greater success with those who never used the Original as they apply it straightforward with no thought of rebrooming to death.

As of last year, we sold about 50/50 – original system and Endura. Both have their followers.

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Posted on Lindsey Posted in Commercial Project, Concrete, Concrete, Decorative Concrete, Decorative Concrete, DIY Project, How-To, Patio, Pool Decks, residential project, Stamped Concrete

Preparation, the MOST important step!

Let’s start by emphasizing the importance of preparation. Please keep this in mind every time you are working with NewLook. Proper preparation of the concrete surface is key to the long-term success of NewLook and most any other concrete coating. Do not take shortcuts! They will come back to haunt you!

Here is a list of the most common issues that can cause coatings to fail.

The Problem: Surface is not Clean and Porous
NewLook was designed to penetrate the concrete surface and create a tenacious bond with a porous substrate. In order to achieve maximum bond, the main goal in preparation is to make sure that the concrete is clean and porous and that there is nothing between NewLook and the substrate. Knowing what to do involves understanding the concrete finish, its composition, and in short, whether it is porous and clean.

The Solution: Using 3in1 PREP for a light Etch, Clean & Degrease
NewLook 3in1 PREP is a water-based, non-corrosive, concrete etching and profiling compound. It is an effective, non-fuming, alternative to harsh acids, such as muriatic acid. 3in1 PREP is environmentally friendly, non-toxic, non-hazardous, and safely prepares concrete surfaces by opening up the pores for effective staining with NewLook Concrete Color Stains or any other penetrating, concrete color stain. 3in1 PREP can be used to create a light profile and open up the pores prior to staining. After applying 3in1 PREP, powerwash the surface to remove it from the surface. Please use safety goggles and gloves to not irritate the eyes and skin. 3in1 PREP is safer than muriatic acid and other similar products, nonetheless, it is better to be safe and protect yourself.

The Problem: Too Tight of a Surface – The Water Test
A simple way to see if the concrete surface is porous enough for NewLook is to create a small puddle of water on the concrete. NewLook’s viscosity is similar to water. As such, if water will penetrate and absorb into the surface, so will the NewLook stain. If the water is poured onto the concrete, and it sits on top of the surface, then it is not porous enough and will need to be etched.

The Solution: Using QuickEtch for a deep profile
Although 3in1 PREP is intended to etch the concrete, it is a light etch. If the concrete requires a stronger etch or if the concrete chatter is more significant, you may need to use QuickEtch to profile the concrete . Generally, the most effective way to apply QuickEtch is with an airless sprayer. This method provides greater yield and “awakens” the chemicals so that they act most effectively. Otherwise, using a “goop” roller (textured roller) to spread QuickEtch is also an effective method. Please note that QuickEtch reacts to the pH of the concrete and will begin to work immediately. For an even etch, please remove the QuickEtch from each area within the same time frame. The longer the product is on the concrete the deeper the etch. You should begin to check to see if you have achieved your etch after 15 minutes. If longer times are needed, it is okay to reawaken the active ingredients by rolling a goop roller over the product. Removing the QuickEtch indoors, rinse with water and suck up the waste with a wet-dry Vac. QuickEtch is biodegradable and is safe to go down the sewer system once diluted. Again, please check local regulations and dispose waste according to local laws and ordinances.

Proper Pressure Washing
The first and most important consideration is which machine to buy. Many contractors prefer different brands. At a minimum, use a pressure washer with a minimum 3000 PSI and a capacity of 4 gallons per minute. It is strongly recommended that the contractor use a 15° or 25° fan tip (never EVER use a 0° tip). Do not bear down on the concrete as it will usually score the concrete and change the surface texture. Keep in mind that there is a big difference between simply hosing off the concrete (“glorified rinsing”) and really pressure washing it well. In areas where pressure washing is not possible, a floor-scrubbing machine with a cleaner is acceptable.

Use a mild cleaner that contains no acid, such as Mean Klean Concrete Cleaner. However, be aware that the concrete may need to be cleaned and thoroughly rinsed several times to achieve a level of clean acceptable for NewLook stains to bond to the substrate. The rule-of-thumb is that if there is anything on the concrete that would prevent concrete stains from penetrating (sealers, paints, “cure and seal” agents, dirt, oil, grease, glue, gum, etc.) then that substance needs to be cleaned off or removed (chemically or mechanically) before applying stains.

Cleaning WITHOUT a pressure Washer
Pressure washers are a great tool for cleaning. Due to the amount of water that is blasted and used, in most cases, pressure washing is only an outdoor activity. Nonetheless, the need to clean and make sure the concrete is porous is still a critical step for indoor concrete as well. So, how can you accomplish this without a pressure washer? Indoors may require a chemical or mechanical approach to cleaning and opening pours.

What to do with the water?
In most instances, diluted materials may be disposed of in the sewer system. However, some communities have regulations against disposing any clears, therefore check local regulations and dispose waste according to local laws and ordinances.

Cleaning Concrete

Using NewLook’s Mean Klean Concrete Cleaner
First, do a water test. Take a cup of water and spill it onto the floor. Is it absorbing easily? If so, then your floor should be porous enough to receive the stain. Now you must clean it with water, a light cleanser such as NewLook Concrete Cleaner, and a powerful wet-dry vac. NewLook Concrete Cleaner is a high-quality, multi-purpose cleaner and degreaser, that is generally used following applications of NewLook Concrete Color Stains™. This concentrated cleaner can be diluted with water to provide an economical, effective cleaner for a variety of surfaces, ranging from concrete to laundry. NewLook Concrete Cleaner quickly removes grease, oil, adhesive, dirt, food, soot, and more. It contains a powerful natural vegetable-source solvent that is safe and bio-degradable. NewLook Concrete Cleaner effectively cleans concrete surfaces stained with NewLook Concrete Color Stains. Read the respective Technical Information Sheet for more information. NewLook Concrete Cleaner can be used to clean in a variety of circumstances. Review the Technical Data Sheet for application instructions. After applying NewLook Concrete Cleaner, spray or pour water over the surface and remove it with a wet-dry vac. Several rinses may be required to remove all of the cleaner from the concrete surface. This step (both cleaning and rinsing) may be required more than once to achieve the desired effects. Please use safety goggles and gloves as a precautionary measure.

NewLook Mean Klean Concrete Degreaser
NewLook stains will not penetrate grease and oil-stained concrete. Oil repels water, and as NewLook is a water-based stain, the concrete will need to be degreased first. NewLook’s Concrete Degreaser is a high-quality, heavy-duty degreaser and soil remover. This concentrated degreaser can be diluted with water to provide an economical, effective cleaner for many different circumstances. Mean Klean Concrete Degreaser removes grease, oil, transmission fluid, some adhesives, and other greasy products from concrete and masonry surfaces. When used according to directions, NewLook Concrete Degreaser effectively cleans concrete surfaces in preparation for staining with NewLook Concrete Color Stains or any other penetrating concrete color stain.

If all else fails….Mechanical Grind
More experienced contractors may choose to prepare and clean indoor surfaces with a grinding machine. We recommend that you seek out manufacturer training for grinding machines, or at a minimum, practice in a discreet area. It is VERY easy to scar or gouge the surface when grinding. NewLook was developed so that the texture of the substrate will not be affected, and as such, any grind marks will be more easily seen when the stain is applied. Grinding is an effective, economical, choice in instances where there is a large surface area that needs to be prepped. However, concrete grinding (dry or wet) is very messy and emits fine dust particles everywhere, or requires containment of waste water and subsequent disposal. You must take precautions in advance for masking off areas and containing the dust. In some instances (especially where stripping a coating is not required), using QuickEtch may achieve the same result without the messy cleanup and need for expensive equipment.

To learn more about staining preparation, please visit www.getnewlook.com.

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Posted on Lindsey Posted in Commercial Project, Concrete, Concrete, Concrete Pathway, DIY Project, Driveways, Patio, residential project, Stamped Concrete

Winterizing Concrete with DriveHard

 
 

Winter is upon us, so it’s time to winterize your concrete! When rain, snow or ice settles into the cracks of concrete and/or saturates the substrate, concrete will shift and move every time freezing and thawing occurs. This reoccurring movement can make the cracks expand (when water freezes it can expand about 9%) or it can create brand new cracks.  This can potentially be very harmful to concrete surfaces, especially when left unprotected. Concrete is like a sponge, and if left unprotected, will retain moisture during the winter.  Also, when the temperature drops below 0 °C or 32 °F (freezing), the water within the concrete expands and can cause the surface to flake or spall.  That is why winterizing concrete is essential to maintain concrete to prevent cracking, spalling, flaking or other issues.

Water damage caused by freeze-thaw issues in asphalt, which is similar in concrete.

Water damage caused by freeze-thaw issues in asphalt, which is similar in concrete.

 

One way to help prevent these damages from occurring is using NewLook’s DriveHard™.  DriveHard™ & DriveHard™ Pro are premium concrete and masonry weatherproofers and fortifiers. The concrete sealer penetrates deep into the surface to create a chemical bond that helps prevent damage from many common problems, including repeated freeze-thaw cycles. The patent-pending formulas create a breathable, durable and water-repellent concrete surface. DriveHard™ & DriveHard™ Pro leave a natural-looking finish that does not create a film or change the surface texture or color.
 
How to Apply DriveHard™

However, if the damage has already occurred, there are a few things that can be done to help prevent these wintertime issues in the future.

Tips on How to Repair Cracks & Damaged Concrete

 

Crack Repair

Overlay

 

For more information on DriveHard™ and other great NewLook products, please visit www.getnewlook.com.

 

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Posted on Lindsey Posted in Commercial Project, Concrete, Endura Solid Stain, Pool Decks
hotel pool

Hooters in EnduraCool – Las Vegas, NV

 
 
 
 

When most people think of Hooters, they think of chicken wings and waitresses, not hotels and pools.   That is why A.C.T, LLC. was commissioned by Hooters Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas to revive their pool deck.   Ken started the 14,000 sq. ft. project by power-washing and using Mean Klean Eco Acid to prep the surface.  Then used EnduraCool in two custom colors, Custom Green Tint and Moonshine to stain the concrete.

 

The stain was applied using a combination of 3/4″ inch nap rollers and NewLook applicator brushes. The strip pattern made the deck look reminiscent of an art deco design, yet modern at the same time.  The stripes and custom color look amazing against the lighted Vegas strip and palm tree lined area.  SmartSeal AU-25 in Gloss was used to seal the pool deck and to protect the stain from wear and tear.

 

Ken, you and your crew did a phenomenal job!!  The pool deck looks great and ready for many guests to go out and enjoy it! NewLook is proud that we could assist A.C.T, LLC in this large project and hope we can with any of your future ones too.

 
 

Please visit www.getnewlook.com to view more projects or ideas on the project blog or gallery.

 

 

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