One of the most economical ways to upgrade your concrete flooring is to get it polished. The polished, shiny surface of a concrete floor is perfect for hospitals, restaurants, manufacturing plants etc. It makes the surface easy to clean, looks beautiful, and the process increases the floor’s hardness. Furthermore, the floor can be enhanced with colours and given an extra glossy texture.
However, the question we often get asked is, does the smooth polished surface of concrete make it slippery for customers and employees? The short answer to that is “no.” But, there are instances where polished concrete may probably not be the best idea.
Polished Concrete Isn’t Slippery When Dry
The concrete polishing process works by compressing the surface of the concrete floor by pushing the molecules together, though the end product is still porous, albeit to a lesser extent. When clean polished concrete floors offer as much grip as a regular concrete floor. Polished concrete, is shown to provide better foot traction compared to marble or even linoleum surfaces.
Polished Concrete Isn’t Necessarily Slippery When Wet
We’ll start by saying that all wet floors can be slippery. However, using a flooring safety test measurement standard found that using polished concrete offers superior slip resistance, even when it is wet. The way water interacts with a porous surface like a polished concrete surface can help offer extra grip. That said, the same porous polished concrete surface also means that water isn’t easily absorbed or wiped uniformly, which results in a temporary wet spot.
However, like any other type of flooring, chemicals and spilled oil can still reduce friction on a polished concrete floor, turning it into a safety hazard. If you want a floor for commercial use or need flooring for an oil distillation plant, it’s best to choose a flooring type that offers a strong, chemically resistant coating.
Polished Concrete Can Become Slippery in Dusty Conditions
One of the drawbacks of polished concrete in our experience is that dusty floors will make it slippery. It can either be dust or a fine powder, but either way, it reduces friction, making it slippery. Since power glides over a polished concrete surface, it can make walking on it dangerous. For this reason, we strongly advise against having polished concrete floors in ceramic labs, for instance, or manufacturing plants that produce lots of sawdust or some other type of powder. However, depending what your business handles, we’d recommend installing a special grip-enhancing coating for the floor.
To find out more about the various benefits of concrete polishing, please feel free to contact us. If you have a facility in Perth, Western Australia, and are considering polished concrete for your business, we will be more than happy to guide you through making a decision.
You can also call us during business hours for a free consultation.