When you want to improve the look of a concrete floor, a polishable overlay adds color, shine, and hides imperfections. In order to get your overlay to last as long as possible, we’re walking you through how to prime your concrete slab before applying the coating. Read more about it below or check out the how-to video to see the results.

What Is a Polishable Concrete Overlay?

A polishable concrete overlay is a thick coating that is applied to a concrete slab to cover flaws and stop any imperfections from showing. While we recommend the multi-step mechanical polish to get the best results, an overlay is a cost-effective, time-saving alternative to a traditional polish using a floor grinder and diamond pads. Over time, the overlay can look dull or worn, but the gloss can be restored using a polishing compound and a buffing or burnishing machine.

One of the concerns with a concrete overlay is that many people will apply them without properly preparing the concrete slab which can lead to cracks in the surface or an overall failure of the coating to adhere to the slab. While it doesn’t need to be perfectly polished, it should be primed in order for the overlay to properly “grab” the concrete and ensure proper adhesion. We recommend using a sand coating to create a concrete surface profile so the overlay is more likely to resist cracking and wear.

How to Apply an Epoxy Sand Primer Coating

As you’ll see in the video above, we use a roller to apply a coating of 100 percent solids epoxy to a clean concrete slab. While the epoxy is still wet, we lay down a heavy coating of dry silica sand. There should not be any dark spots where the epoxy shows through or the sand layer is thin.

After at least eight hours, or once the epoxy has fully dried and cured, vacuum up the excess sand from the slab. You’ll be left with a coarse profile that makes the ideal primer for most polishable concrete overlays.

Order Your Concrete Overlays and More from BMD

We have everything you need to get a beautiful concrete floor, from floor grinders and tooling to smooth imperfections to high-quality, long-lasting epoxy coatings and overlays. To learn more about our selection or get a quote for materials reach out today to speak with a member of our sales team by calling   (815) 472-9744 or by filling out our contact form to get started!