Whether you need to remove old paint or you want to prepare a surface to lay down a fresh epoxy coating, using a shot blaster on your concrete floor is generally the best option. But why is that? What makes shot blasting the best method to strip and prepare concrete?
What Is Shot Blasting?
Shot blasting involves steel shot being propelled at high velocity at a close range to a surface, typically concrete or metal. Because the steel shot hits at such a force, it quickly chips away and etches at the top layer, and the broken up layer is then automatically suctioned into a connected dust collector while the shot is pulled back into the machine and reused. Whether the top layer is compacted dirt, rust, or an epoxy coating, the shot is able to blast it away, leaving a clean, bare surface.
Using a Shot Blaster to Remove Coatings
If you want to paint a concrete surface or you want to lay down a fresh coat of epoxy or urethane, it needs to be clean and free of old coatings, adhesives, and chemicals. This is to ensure proper adhesion and extend the life of the coating. To remove paint or old epoxy from your concrete and take it back to a bare surface, in most cases, shot blasting is the most efficient and effective option. By using the right size of steel shot and moving at a steady speed, the machine removes all traces of paint, dirt, adhesive, or coating in just one to two passes.
The other option to remove these materials from concrete is either a floor scraper or a floor grinder. While scrapers and grinders are better for rubber or elastomeric coatings (because the shot could bounce rather than blast), they don’t work as well for epoxy, urethane, or paint. Grinders may leave behind a surface that’s too smooth in addition to creating more dust, while the scraper can’t get “under” a coating to scrape it away effectively.
Using a Shot Blaster to Profile Concrete
In addition to a shot blaster being one of the best ways to quickly get a clean surface, it can also create a rougher concrete surface profile (CSP) at the same time. For most thicker coatings, there needs to be more surface area to get the best bond. By adding texture to the concrete and forming “peaks and valleys,” you’re increasing the surface area and giving the coating more to “grip” as it cures. Not only will you get a better result, but most epoxy manufacturers recommend shot blasting over any surface preparation method prior to using their coatings.
Even if you plan to leave the concrete bare, using a shot blaster to create a rough texture provides a safer, non-slip surface. This is especially ideal in high-traffic areas and outdoor spaces to reduce the risk of slips and falls.
Contact Us to Find the Right Shot Blaster
If you need a shot blaster for your next surface preparation project, the sales team at BMD is here to help. We have a large selection, including ride-on shot blasters, edging equipment, and handheld shot blasters. Reach out to our team today to learn more and get a free quote by calling (815)472-7944 or filling out our contact form!