Concrete finishing is not just about smoothing out the surface of the concrete—although that is a significant part. The finishing process happens before, during, and after the concrete’s curing process. Depending on the type of concrete and its intended use, we may screed, float, edge, groove and seal the concrete to give it the quality, shape, and texture required. Using a curing compound might also be part of the finishing process and can help keep the timeline on your project.
Smoothing concrete may be necessary to ensure it will function properly. For example, significant inconsistencies in the height of the concrete could cause weight to be spread unevenly across the surface, stressing one part more and potentially causing damage or failure. However, finishing is not just about function. It can also be decorative.
Finishing options for concrete include:
- Using a trowel to smooth out the concrete
- Using a broom to add a rough texture
- Staining the concrete to add color (added during mixing or after)
- Stamping the concrete to add any of a wide variety of textures
- Polishing concrete to create a more reflective surface
- Adding aggregate materials or salt for aesthetics
There are many other options for decorative concrete finishing.