All concrete, contrary to popular belief, is not just concrete. There is a multitude of different types of concrete designed for various applications, from high-density concrete used principally for radiation shielding to pervious concrete which allows water to easily flow through it. The versatility of concrete has in recent times been identified by design professionals to create beautiful, unique additions to their décor.
Concrete can be used to make bold statements or blend seamlessly and complement any environment. Typically, lovers of concrete are those that want something personalised, expressive, and has a natural appearance and feel.
Why choose Glass Reinforced Concrete over traditional wet-cast concrete?
Glass Reinforced Concrete (GRC), as the name suggests, is concrete that is reinforced with glass fibres. These fibres, unlike steel reinforcement in traditional concrete, are dispersed throughout the concrete. This improves the impact, tensile and flexural strength of concrete making pieces less likely to crack.
GRC can be made at thicknesses not possible with traditional wet-cast concrete. Because GRC can be made thinner this allows larger pieces with fewer seams to be cast off site and installed in a similar fashion to stone bench tops.
The concrete for our GRC items are all batched and mixed in house at Concrete Society which eliminates the risks associated when using concrete procured from by a third party ready-mix concrete supplier.
Whilst we do offer both traditional wet-cast concrete and GRC, we highly recommend using GRC for the majority of benchtops and working surfaces due to its superior strength, durability and repeatability in finish.
Are GRC products indestructible then?
Of course not. Whilst it is considered a robust material, some common sense is required. A simple wipe as you go policy will ensure your GRC pieces remain beautiful for years to come. A few more do’s and don’ts include:
- Use a soft, damp microfibre cloth when cleaning
- Only use mild non-abrasive cleaners to remove stubborn stains
- Use trivets and heat mats when placing hot items onto GRC pieces, do not directly place onto the surface
- Use a chopping block when using knives or during practices that may scratch the surface of the concrete
- Avoid contact with any of the following; any product with a high pH, paint strippers, bleach, nail polish remover
- Avoid high impact, such as dropping heavy items onto GRC pieces, especially near the edges
- Avoid placing hot items directly onto GRC pieces. Hot items, such as pans, can cause the concrete to experience thermal shock, which can compromise the sealer
- Avoid dragging items across the surface that may scratch the surface, such as items with sharp edges or rough undersides.
- Avoid using knives directly on the surface of the concrete as this can compromise the sealer. Doing so may scratch the surface, but if it doesn’t then there is a good chance it will ruin your knife over time so either way you are damaging something!
For more information on our care and maintenance practices please refer to our Care & Maintenance page
Can GRC be used indoors and outdoors?
Yes, our pieces are suitable for both applications. The sealers we use are UV resistant and non-yellowing, however, direct sunlight and weather may cause minor colour changes over time. It is common for pieces in direct sunlight to require more frequent maintenance.
What colours are available?
Any! One advantage of our GRC is that it is batched and poured at our factory in WA, which means we can provide custom colours to suit any design brief.
How can I get more information?
If you have any further questions please don't hesitate to contact us at Concrete Society at email@example.com. Appointments can be made to view our showroom located in Welshpool.