What do you do with large cracks and saw cuts?  We fill natural cracks with cement that accepts acid stain, so that they add to the stonelike appearance of the floor. We clean out and leave saw cuts open, since they were made to allow for expansion and contraction of the slab. In cases like the Santa Fe Arcade (above) the wide joints between slabs are filled with a flexible caulk to keep spike heels and debris out of the gaps.

Gaye Goodman & Faux Real LLC….Creativity & Expertise

Can old, damaged concrete be stained?  Yes, even a slab which has been under carpet for 50 years can be completely transformed! Faux Real uses chemical cleaning and scrubbing rather than grinding, since it is the upper ¼” (the ‘cream layer’) which reacts best to our stain.  

Can acid staining be done outdoors?  Yes, we often stain patios and rooms made from a garage conversion. Our stains and sealers do NOT stand up well to vehicular traffic, so we advise against staining driveways and carports. The best protection for a new garage floor is to clean it and apply a waterproofing sealer which does little to change the appearance, but makes it easier to keep clean.

Beautiful Imperfections

Odd things can happen en route to a finished stained floor. One photo shows something that builders dread – cracks! But these are so fine and evenly distributed that they have no impact on the strength of the concrete. We can emphasize the “alligator skin” look by staining the floor with a diluted shade of dark walnut or black and our clients love it.

The photo with white “leopard spots” shows what can happen when hail falls and slowly melts on a new slab of curing concrete. The pattern is invisible until we stain the slab. The homeowner said “I wish you had done that everywhere,” but we didn’t do it. The hail only came in through a few holes in the roof where skylights had not yet been installed. It appears that there might be some chemical difference between hail and rain which affects our stains. Rain drops can also tint a concrete slab, but they look like spattered drops and barely visible.

The small photo with bright red lines is a complete mystery. There is no true red color available in acid stains. Those lines appeared after we used three colors, mixed on the floor and laid plastic into the wet stain to get a blue-green landscape effect at the Bitter Lakes Wildlife Preserve.
In fact, they did not appear until several months after we had completed the job and returned to take some photographs. That anomaly has happened only twice in our 23 years of staining.

We warn our clients that their floors will not fade, but they may change a bit in the first year, due to chemical reactions still ongoing as the slab cures. We look forward to seeing more beautiful imperfections.