Gone are the days when concrete floors are just known to be dull and gray. With different coloring options, you can add life and vibrance to your dull surface. From stains, dry pigments, and dyes, there are many choices to pick from.
In recent years, concrete dyes are becoming more popular. Continue reading to learn how you can use them on your concrete surface.
What Are Concrete Dyes?
If you don’t want to use the traditional concrete stains, a good alternative is concrete dyes. Unlike stains, concrete dyes are translucent and with no chemical reaction. The pigment and other coloring agents only penetrate the concrete material. You can use concrete dyes in both commercial and residential applications.
Concrete dyes are available in almost any color and tone. Most people dilute the pigment with water or solvents to produce paler shades and colors. Here are the most popular types of concrete dyes:
Compared to solvent-based dyes, water-based concrete dyes are more environmentally-friendly. They contain less harmful chemicals, resulting in subtle tones. Since water-based dyes don’t achieve bold colors, they cannot conceal the blemishes on the surface.
For bolder and stronger shades, solvent-based dyes are the way to go. They provide dark, full-coverage color that can hide imperfections on the concrete surface. To create lighter color schemes, solvent-based dyes can be diluted with water.
The downside of solvent-based dyes is they are combustible. They contain chemicals and fumes that may be hazardous to people and properties. For safety purposes, make sure to work with a professional concrete contractor who can apply solvent-based dyes.
Concrete Dye Application Process
Step 1. Prep the Surface
Before you apply concrete dyes, you need to thoroughly clean the floor. Use a broom or vacuum to remove dirt from the surface. Dust and debris will affect the dyeing process because the color won’t penetrate properly. Soapy water and degreaser can be used to get rid of stubborn dirt and oils.
If you’re working inside your home, protect the surrounding walls from being stained. Use painter’s tape and plastic sheeting to cover adjacent walls and baseboards.
Step 2. Mix and Prepare Acetone Dye
Typically, acetone is needed for concrete dye application. For every gallon of concrete dye, you will need one gallon of acetone to create an acetone dye solution. Mix properly and let the solutions emulsify for a minimum of 1 hour. If you use powder dyes, they should be fully dissolved in the acetone before application. Once mixed, you may pour the acetone dye solution into a sprayer.
Step 3. Apply Stain
A sprayer is ideal if you want a more even application. When you use a sprayer, apply the dye in circular motions. Pump up the sprayer to the desired pressure. After application, clean the pump sprayer with acetone and store it properly. For a traditional method, a paint roller or brush is for you! Apply two coats of concrete dye and wait for at least two hours of drying time.
When working with concrete dyes, always take safety measures. Use goggles and gloves to avoid eye and skin irritation.
Step 4. Seal the Surface
After the dye application, the next step is to seal the concrete surface. There are different types of sealers that will protect the color of the concrete. You can choose from water-based, solvent-based, or urethane-based sealers in the market.
To achieve desirable results, you will likely apply two or more coats of sealant. Take note that you need to leave a 12-hour wait time between each coat. Let the sealant dry for several hours before using the floor. For surface protection and maintenance, apply floor finish or wax on the dyed concrete surface.
Have Questions About Concrete Dyes?
Whatever colored concrete application you choose, Midstate Concrete is here to help! Turn to our company if you are looking for a professional concrete contractor near you. We take pride in being the home of fine concrete solutions in Harrisburg, PA.
We have a team of experts who can install and repair concrete surfaces. Our services include driveway paving and sealing, concrete leveling, concrete repair, and more! We guarantee high-quality service, quick turnaround time, and affordable pricing!
For a free consultation, call our staff today. We are here to help, so please don’t hesitate to reach out anytime!