Cost Of Polished Concrete
Polished concrete is popular and desirable for businesses and homeowners, and there are many reasons why the cost of polished concrete flooring is less than other alternatives. For example, when you compare polished concrete to hardwood and vinyl composite tile (VCT) flooring, you have less cost for materials, installation, and maintenance. Crucially, there is less environmental impact with polished concrete versus hardwood flooring and VCT.
Concrete, the primary material for polished concrete flooring, is generally less expensive than hardwood and vinyl tile. Polished concrete is created by grinding and polishing the existing concrete surface, which usually already exists in a property. Hardwood flooring is typically made from more expensive, high-quality wood species that must be ordered. VCT flooring also requires the purchase of vinyl composite tiles, adhesive, and other installation materials. By choosing concrete polishing, you work with what you already have and greatly minimize material costs.
Polished concrete flooring usually already exists at a customer’s property, and it is less labor-intensive than hardwood and tile flooring installations. Installing a hardwood floor may require additional subfloor preparation, moisture barriers, and other specialized tools, while installing a VCT floor can require complex cuts and intricate patterns with adhesive. Grinding and polishing an existing concrete surface will take less time and save you on installation costs.
Polished concrete flooring is known for its durability, low maintenance, and safety when it includes slip-resistant additives. It doesn’t require regular sanding, staining, or refinishing, which are everyday maintenance tasks for hardwood flooring. Vinyl tile flooring may require more frequent maintenance, such as cleaning, waxing, and periodic replacement of damaged tiles, which can add to the overall cost over time. While seamless, polished concrete is highly hygienic, hardwood and VCT can accumulate bacteria and mold in floor seams and edges. Finally, in the case of spills or flooding, liquid, and moisture can leak into hardwood and tile seams, while polished concrete offers no area to accept it. Therefore, your maintenance cost for polished concrete will be much lower long-term than hardwood and tile.
Sustainability and value engineering make polishing concrete more appealing, as it meets LEED requirements and remains a low-cost, long-lasting flooring option. Many installers use energy-efficient grinding and polishing equipment, and polishing concrete does not emit harmful VOCs. There is no “polished concrete smell.” It is also breathable, which eliminates concerns about MVER. Finally, there is little waste and water use from installation, and with regular maintenance, property owners can eliminate harsh cleaning solvents.
When installing hardwood floors, it is essential to look for hardwood certified by reputable organizations such as the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), which ensures that the wood is harvested sustainably and responsibly. Often, FSC-certified wood is not used in hardwood flooring due to cost. Also, some hardwood flooring may be treated with chemicals for preservation, pest control, or staining. These chemicals can contribute to environmental pollution and impact indoor air quality. Finally, waste generation, including wood scraps, bark, and sawdust, which must be disposed of or processed, often contributes to environmental pollution.
VCT flooring is made from vinyl, a synthetic material derived from fossil fuels. The extraction and processing of these raw materials can have negative environmental impacts, including habitat destruction, air and water pollution, and greenhouse gas emissions. In addition, manufacturing and installation generate waste materials such as trimmings and scraps, which can contribute to landfill waste. Finally, VCT flooring often contains additives, such as plasticizers, stabilizers, and colorants, which may contain harmful chemicals. These chemicals can leach out of the flooring and contribute to indoor air pollution, affecting indoor air quality and posing health risks.
Low Cost And Long-Lasting Polished Concrete
Polished concrete is a low-cost, durable, and low-maintenance flooring option for various industrial, commercial, and residential applications. Compare polished concrete’s material, installation, maintenance, and environmental costs to hardwood and VCT flooring. You will also see why GCs, architects, and homeowners prefer polished concrete as a floor solution.