A Polished Concrete Floor in a Carpark

Advantages of using Lithium Based Densifers and Sealers

All available concrete hardeners and densifiers in today’s marketplace will provide, in general, three main benefits concrete surface hardening, concrete dust proofing and concrete floor sealing. Each of these are as a result of a chemical process or reaction that takes place between the actual silicate / silicanate, portland cement and the calcium hydroxide (free limes) in the concrete substrate. When this reaction takes place, crystals are formed that fill up any empty pores within the cream of the concrete resulting in the concrete to be hardened and densified floor surface.

 

Lithium silicates are a smaller molecule so will disperse evenly into tight steel trowelled concrete, a burnished finished concrete floor, broom finish or a float finish.

This is possible because of its small molecular structure.  Contrary, sodium silicate is much larger and has a difficult time to evenly penetrate tighter finishes.  Lithium silicate will evenly react filling all empty pores with no inconsistencies or weak points at the surface.  Sodium or potassium based hardeners will react inconsistently, therefore will leave the weak spots at the surface, which will eventually cause those areas to deteriorate and dust.

The lithium silica reacts with the calcium hydroxide in the concrete to form stable tri-calcium silica structures that are insoluble, providing greater density and resistance to abrasion, dusting, and attack.  Contrary, a single structure of sodium silicate is leaving opportunity for deterioration, dusting and attack to the surface.

A concrete surface that was hardened and densified through consistent and deeper penetration will produce increased hardness, abrasion resistance, long-term durability, and a dust-proofed surface, making surface easy to clean and maintain.

C² Super Hard™ Premium Lithium-­Silicate Hardener & Densifier for Concrete C² Hard™Hardener and densifier for concrete.

 

Chemistry

Today, all hardeners and densifiers are based on silicate or silicanate chemical formulations that are derived from sodium, potassium, magnesium, and the newest from lithium.

The basic difference between the actual type of silicate or silicanate is the actual size of the molecule. The following are the molecule sizes from the largest to the smallest:
• Sodium (the largest molecules)
• Potassium
• Magnesium
• Lithium (the smallest molecules)

If you’ve been using any of these chemicals for polishing concrete you would be well aware of the finish they can help you achieve. Call one of the Concrete Prep experts at All Preparation Equipment on 1800 422 992 today to discuss your upcoming or existing polished concrete job.

The size of the molecule is very important because it determines how deep the hardener will penetrate into the concrete surface and how consistently it will react. This ultimately will affect the overall performance and long-term durability of the concrete surface.
To create the chemical reaction, Seal Hard™ is relying on the largest molecule of sodium silicate, while C² Super Hard™ is relying on the lithium silicate, which is the smallest molecule. The C² Super Hard™ has an advantage over Seal Hard™ because of the molecule size and its ability to deeply penetrate into the surface.

Effectiveness

C² Super Hard™ lithium silicate will evenly penetrate into a tight steel troweled finish, burnished finish, broom finish, or a float finish. This is possible because of its small molecular structure. Contrary, the Seal Hard™ sodium silicate is much larger and has a difficult time to evenly penetrate tighter finishes.

C² Super Hard™ lithium silicate will evenly react filling all empty pores with no inconsistencies or weak points at the surface. The Seal Hard™ will react inconsistently, therefore will leave the weak spots at the surface, which will eventually cause those areas to deteriorate and dust.

 

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In conclusion, 

The lithium silica reacts with the calcium hydroxide in the concrete to form stable tricalcium silica structures that are insoluble, providing greater density and resistance to abrasion, dusting, and attack. Contrary, the Seal Hard™ is a single structure of sodium silicate is leaving opportunity for deterioration, dusting and attack to the surface.
A concrete surface that was hardened and densified through consistent and deeper penetration, will produced increased hardness, abrasion resistance, long-term durability, a dust proofed surface, making surface easy to clean and maintain.

Judging by the success of the C2 Crete Colours International products, especially the C2 Seal, Lithium based sealers have added benefits to standard penetrating or topical concrete sealers.

 

What Lithium based products offer

  • Strengthening the concrete sub floor
  • Provides an excellent penetration into the pours of the concrete
  • Gives a greater abrasion resistance
  • Provides longevity and durability on the floor
  • Eliminates dusting from Efflorescence
  • Slip Resistance
  • Improves the condition of old concrete floors
  • Reduced tire wear
  • Little or no production ‘down time’
  • Provides less maintenance on the floor
  • Improves reflection and ambient lighting
  • and is LEED Friendly

 

When comes time to choose the concrete densifier, sealer or chemical to use on your polished concrete floors, call the All Preparation Equipment team or give us a call on 1800 422 992 to chat about the finish you want to achieve.

 

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