All poured concrete countertops benefit from a thorough polishing before they're put to use.You will be able to achieve a beautiful finish on your countertop with the use of an electric wet concrete polisher and a series of coarse to fine-grit diamond polishing pads.Not only will polishing remove bumps and rough edges, but it can expose some of the attractive aggregates within the concrete mix, which results in a one-of-a-kind piece.
Step 1: Drop cloths and plastic are used to protect your workspace.
Concrete polishing can be very messy.Drop cloths can be used to cover your floors.It's a good idea to cover your walls with plastic as well.
Step 2: Use a patching mixture to fill small holes in the concrete.
Before beginning the polishing process, you can fill in the small holes with homemade or store-bought patching mixture.
Step 3: Allow the concrete to cure for at least a few days.
Don't polish your countertop until the concrete is completely cured.The concrete should have been cured for 10 days and 30 days.
Step 4: Water and a squeegee can be used to wash off the concrete.
Water should be poured over the top and edges of the countertop.To remove debris from the concrete, run a squeegee over the entire piece.When polishing the concrete, leftover debris might dig into it and leave deep scratches, so make sure to remove all remnants during the process.
Step 5: Before you start working, make sure you wear an apron, safety goggles and earplugs.
An apron or jumpsuit protects your clothing from the mess of concrete.Your eyes should be covered with safety goggles, and you can use construction earmuffs to protect your ears from the harsh sounds of the grinding tool.There are apron ties that need to be tucked away.If you want long hair not to dangle in front of your shoulders, tie it back away from your face.
Step 6: A handheld wet polisher can be connected to a water source.
You will be using a handheld wet concrete polisher with variable speed settings and a ground-fault circuit interrupter.You can twist a garden hose onto a receiving tube if you have a built-in water hose.Attach the hose from your water source to the tool securely.Water should be released as you grind the concrete.Without a stream of water, the concrete dust would typically form.The grinding pads will heat up quickly if they are not cooled down.Variable speed settings can give you more control over your progress.
Step 7: Attach the coarsest diamond grinding pad to the machine.
You will use a compatible set of diamond grinding pads ranging from coarse to very fine.It is easy to switch from one tool to another with compatible hook-and-loop attachment.Attach the coarsest pad securely on the polisher.Make sure the tools and grinding pads you choose are designed for concrete use.Stone pads intended for use on granite won't hold up to this project.
Step 8: Put pressure on the concrete surface with the tool level.
Start the tool with the largest horizontal surface of the countertop and position the grinding pad in close proximity to the concrete.You can work your way around the surface in fanned or linear strokes.You won't need to push down on the polishing tool very hard if it's held on an angle.If you do, you will cause it to dig into the surface and leave a mess.
Step 9: With the first pass, buff out bumps to get an even surface texture.
You can get the entire concrete surface to the same texture with your 50-grit grinding pad.It will be rough to the touch, but the important thing is that it is even.Go over the surface as many times as you can.A flat surface is what you should end up with.
Step 10: Attach a protective skirt and polish the vertical surfaces.
When you hold the tool vertically, the water that's streaming out and catching all the concrete dust doesn't spray all over the floor and ceiling of your workspace.The edges and corners of the countertop should be polished the same way as the skirt is attached.Complete a full pass over the horizontal surface and vertical surfaces before you switch to the next finer grit pad.This will save you time in the long run and will ensure that the texture is consistent across all sides of the countertop.
Step 11: Go over the entire surface again when you switch to the next level of grit.
If you started with a 50-grit pad, you should move down to a 100 gr pad to buff out the texture.Apply even pressure and work at a moderate speed until the horizontal and vertical surfaces have a consistent texture.
Step 12: Between passes, rinse and squeegee the countertop.
There may be leftover debris as you polish the concrete.Press off any bits of debris.You can use the intermittent pauses to look at your work and see how close you are to the finish.
Step 13: Hard-to-reach areas can be polished using handheld diamond grinding blocks.
You will start with the coarsest block and work your way up to the finest block.If you want to smooth out the edges of the countertop, make sure you get any difficult corners.The handheld blocks should be the same as the ones you used with the electric polishing tool.You won't achieve the same finish if you skip any levels.
Step 14: The progress is from the coarse-grit pads to the medium-grind pads.
If you have already used a 50-, 100, or 200-grit pad, you will use a second one for the next pass.Don't skip any levels, whatever you do!Since polishing pads are designed to smooth out the surface created by the previous grit, you need to slowly progress from coarse to fine.If you most recently used a 200 grit pad, it won't give you a nice looking finish.You will see beautiful results if you stick with the progression.
Step 15: A smooth surface can be created by using medium- fine grits.
When you are done with the 800-grit pad, switch to it.The process of polishing the countertops should be repeated.You will begin to see a smooth finish as you work your way through the pads.
Step 16: The best way to achieve a shiny finish is with the finest grits.
A 1,500-grit pad will provide a smooth-to-the-touch surface and a subtle sheen.The final pass should be completed with a 3,000 grit pad.
Step 17: The countertop should be given a final rinse.
One last time, rinse and squeegee the countertop after you have achieved the desired finish.All surfaces have a smooth and even finish, so make sure you haven't missed any spots.Allow the concrete to dry completely.
Step 18: The concrete should be treated with paint or acid stains if desired.
After polishing the concrete and giving it a final rinse and dry, you should apply any paint or acid stain treatments.
Step 19: Use a rag to apply a single coat of concrete sealer to the surface.
Purchase a concrete Sealer that is designed for countertops.It should be food safe and waterproof.Saturate a clean rag with the product and wipe the concrete with it.It's a good idea to coat the nooks and corners of the countertop.You can choose from a variety of levels.
Step 20: It's a good idea to let the sealer cure before you enjoy your new countertop.
The surface should be allowed to dry completely.It may take a few days or weeks to cure, depending on the product you use.You will be able to use and maintain your new concrete countertop.Although seal won't prevent all scratches, spots, stains, and other flaws from occurring with regular use, it is an important step in preventing the growth ofbacteria within your concrete.