What is Acid Stain?
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What is Acid Stain?
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Acid stains are composed of water, hydrochloric acid and water-soluble metallic salts that penetrate and react with chemicals in cured concrete to produce insoluble color deposits in the pores. An acid stain formulation contains no pigments or resins. 

Stained Concrete
Acid Stain is not a paint or coating agent, rather, it's a coloring process involving a chemical reaction on a cementitious material. A solution made with water, acid and inorganic salts reacts with minerals already present in the concrete, the result of this reaction is color. It works very well on new or old concrete, and we've seen impressive results over decorative polymer overlays as well as self-leveling products. Acid Stain is a very durable product if properly protected with sealer or wax, and it can be applied to both interiors and exteriors.

What makes Acid Stain so attractive? Acid Stain gives concrete a mottled, variegated, marble like look. It creates beautiful colors on concrete, mostly earth tone browns, reddish browns and greens. You can also create your own shades by mixing and matching your available colors, or applying them at different rates. Never expect Acid Stain to be uniform or have an even tone, you'll get different reactions from slab to slab, and even on the same job you may see different coloration patterns.

Acid Stain can be applied to walks, entrances, driveways, living rooms, bathrooms, patios, high traffic areas and even vertically to any cementitious surface

Not every concrete floor is eligible for Acid Stain, though age is not an issue, the shape it's in is. A smooth concrete surface will yield more attractive results than an old worn one. If the concrete is spalled, the aggregate is exposed or has previously been acid etched, the stain may not "take in" and will not look as desired because the aggregate does not react with the stain, only materials in the concrete paste do. On some applications where the surface is textured, as in stamped concrete or stamped overlays, Acid Stain provides even more depth of color, larger selection and realistic look to the surface.

Preparations for Acid Staining will depend on the condition of the slab, on new concrete the only thing needed is to allow time for curing, (at least three weeks after poured) and some rinsing and scrubbing to remove laitance. For old concrete, a thorough cleaning is necessary; any dirt, grease, paint, sealer or curing agent will prevent the stain from penetrating and reacting. It is always a good idea to do a small test area first. So before applying, preparation and thorough planning the job is a good starting point.

Acid Stain application involves very few tools, all you need is assorted sprayers, brushes and a saw with a diamond blade in it for scoring the surface. You can go from a simple design to a very sophisticated project. The more complicated your design, the more labor intensive it will become, but the end results are simply stunning. After the Acid Stain is applied, the floor should be sealed and or waxed to protect the stain and add shine and depth.

The Decorative Concrete Business has been growing very rapidly for the last few years, and Acid Stain has been a big part of this growth. More and more contractors are learning to apply it, and more homeowners, architecs and designers are asking for it. The Acid Stain market is miles away from being well known and developed, but it has a very bright and shiny future, and our goal is to help you learn more about this incredible product.

Thanks to Acid-Stain.Com for the use of this informative article.