Coating Concrete

Condition Analysis is crucial to ensure a successful coatings projects

If your substrate is new, old, or compromised concrete, many factors will affect the success of your coatings projects. Before you can choose a coating, it is important to analyze the surface and understand the job the coating will do.

For example, will a coated concrete surface bear heavy traffic, foot or otherwise, or face frequent abrasion or wind-driven rain? What is the environment like? What temperature will it be exposed to? It will be exposed to high moisture levels or chemical cleaning.

“Sherwin-Williams has a wide array of coating products that will help create a durable, long-lasting, high-performance finish in basements, on floors, exterior walls, or on other masonry,” says Rick Watson, Sherwin-Williams Director of Product Information and Technical Services. “But, success begins with understanding the substrate’s condition, environment, preparation and the job it will do Watson identified three steps to succeed in concrete coating projects: Assess the substrate condition and the surrounding environment; evaluate the coating solution; then restore and prepare the surface.

Assessing the substrate

An existing finished concrete surface can offer a variety of clues as to the problems that may be linked to a previous coating application issue. White powdery deposits can be a sign that water and salt have been removed from masonry. Proper application, where a recommended coating has been applied at the temperatures and specifications specified by the manufacturer, will not allow for moisture or salts to migrate.

Sagging paint can occur if walls are wet or allow moisture to move through the walls. Pinholes in the film can be caused by outgassing, poor application, or painting over contaminants. Proper planning can prevent this. A coating surface may show rust or water staining. This could indicate that there is a problem with flow or pooling and should be addressed before applying coating. This could indicate that concrete needs to be repaired before coating can begin.

The substrate will help you determine your coating requirements and provide specific instructions about how to apply them,” Watson says.

Envision the solution

Once you have an idea of the substrate condition, you’re ready to take a deeper dive into creating a solution, and here’s where you’ll determine a coating that meets your needs. What are the key characteristics of a coating? For example, what is the chemical resistance or abrasion resistance needed for a basement floor that gets a lot of foot traffic? How about aesthetics and longevity? What about keeping the wind-driven rain from entering the building?

The application environment is also worth consideration. What is the temperature and humidity? Is there anyone else working in the vicinity? Is the area well-ventilated Is the owner or other stakeholder expecting a rapid return to service?

The nature of concrete coatings often requires the delivery of customized coating solutions. At Sherwin-Williams we not only have the products that work, but also the experts who will help you choose the right product. It is important to have a plan .”

Time to get started

By now you will know if there are any repairs or treatments that need to be done before coating can begin. The most important thing to do when it comes time for a coating application is what you do next.

” The most important step in determining whether or not an application will succeed is the surface prep. Based on the information you have so far, Watson says that the preparation will include chemical cleaning, acidetching, or abrading. Proper surface preparation

is essential for proper bonding and adhesion. The coating system that you choose should be long-lasting in performance and protection.

We know concrete has many demands on a coating system.” Watson says. Watson says that the Sherwin Williams line of concrete-specific coatings is engineered to provide a wide range of solutions. You will find the right one .”

For more information about substrate analysis, choosing a coating and surface preparation, as well as painting concrete and masonry please visit these Sherwin Williams resources or contact your Sherwin Williams representative.

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