Strength and durability are two key characteristics of concrete that are significantly improved by Geocrete’s chemical treatments and mechanical polishing, which makes polished concrete an excellent flooring surface for industrial settings.
Most industrial settings – factories, manufacturing plants, warehouses, workshops, etc. – already have concrete floors, but few companies recognise the benefits available from upgrading to polished concrete.
One company that has recognised the benefits is Paccar Australia, which manufactures Kenworth Trucks in a plant in Bayswater, Victoria.
Over the past year, during periods of scheduled downtime, I’ve led the Geocrete team in steadily converting the epoxy-painted concrete floors in Paccar’s production areas into polished concrete.
Paccar’s primary needs for its floors are practical. It wants the most hard-wearing, abrasion-resistant surface available. It also wants to reduce the ongoing costs of maintaining its floors (they were being recoated every year) and to improve the safety, aesthetics, and day-to-day cleaning.
Its floors are standard 32MPa grey concrete with basalt aggregate designed for industrial use. A matt finish was chosen for its low-slip properties, although even a matt finish produces a pleasing low shine.
We’ve done a full 5mm stone exposure on the concrete, which has produced an attractive visual result. I’ve had feedback from management that the floors have lifted the spirits of the workforce as they’ve enhanced their working environment.
It’s been a demanding job; we’ve had to grind through 30mm of epoxy sand toppings and paint before we even got to the concrete. There have also been various redundant metal bolts to remove and gouges and oil stains to deal with. We’ve had to work in short shutdown periods, with 16-hour days needed to get the work done in time.
So far we’ve polished 2500 square metres and we’re booked in to do another 1500 square metres during the next scheduled shutdown.
My concrete polishing process GeoshineTM works equally well in industrial, commercial and retail settings. Indeed, the incredible hardness, durability and stain resistance I achieve with GeoshineTM are particularly beneficial in such heavy-use, high-traffic environments.
Polished concrete is still a relatively new flooring surface in Australia. Its benefits and advantages are still seeping into the consciousness of our architects and builders. However, I think you will be seeing a lot more of it in the future as some of our big retailers are starting to specify it in their new store builds.