Concrete Stain- Non Acid

5 replies [Last post]

I am looking to add staining to my lineup. I do mostly brick paver cleaning and sealing as well as some concrete clean/seal. Most of my work is residential concrete patios and driveway poured with a broom finish.

I went through a few different acid staining courses and it seems like that looks a lot better on smooth finished concrete than on broomed patios.

I have been looking at some of the transparent water based stains like from butterfield colors- elements I think theirs is called as well as colorcrete exterior from CCC-USA.

With tht water based I am looking for a more consistant color, something closer to actual colored concrete. I know there will be a bit of a marbelized effect with the transparent stains but it seems like that is more along the lines of what I am looking for. Would you agree water based transparent stains would be better suited for this?

Any feedback or thoughts on these types of products would be greatly appreciated. Also, I know what my costs and what my profit will need ot be but their is nobody local who offers this service. Just comapnys that acid stain interior concrete. What is the going rate in your area for applying these water based stains?

Thanks in advance for your replys!

itsreallyconc's picture
whichever system you choose,

whichever system you choose, forget about letting YOUR personal whims/desires/likes/dislikes ' color ' your thinking,,, we've all got jobs we wouldn't want in our homes yet our clients wishes were fulfilled & they were happy.

these are difficult economic times for dec conc specialty products manufacturers & distributors,,, be certain your source is financially strong OR you'll be looking at more training VERY soon ! you might investigate other forums - star-dek had 1 & so does elitecrete,,, see what those guys post ! whatever you decide, be certain you've got a knowledgeable dedicated distributor,,, i'd think its impossible for any genl supply house to know wtf he's doing w/acid-stain/dyes when there's LOTS more $$$ for him selling other items,,, most distributors carry this stuff just to fill out a rate card - they don't know jack-**** nor are they about to learn so they can pass it on to you/us.

limiting yourself to ' just ' stain / dye ' places you in a self-constructed box w/definite boundaries - not the wisest biz decision in my view.

as you've already discovered, there's no consistency in concrete color whether its brand new OR been in place 20yrs,,, far's selling prices, harry listen'd to a guy the other day who said he'd grind, o'lay, stain, & seal for........................... $ 3.00 sf ? might be wrong, tho - could've been lower.

we see $ 3sf commonly toss'd around including sealer,,, its rare those jobs last then its 3x more costly to repair,,, just put enough $ on a job & there'll be contractors taking the item fast enough !

best [the original] stay-at-home-for-$3-sf yic-yac

Lindy A.'s picture
Lindy A.
Concrete dyes and reactive

Concrete dyes and reactive acid stains both have their place in this industry; in some cases both are used on the same job for a wide range of reasons. One type of coloring being better than the other is a matter of perception ... opinions differ in a 50/50 way between contractors /applicators, as well as those of the property owners will as to end result/appearance they have in mind.
Price you charge for you service, depends on a great many factors as well ... number of sq.ft. (obviously you would charge more for 250 sq.ft. than 2,500 sq.ft.), distance to/from job and number of trips it will take ($.35 to $.45 per mile), material and supply costs, labor dollars, add in any general business overhead, freight charges to acquire materials, rental costs of specialty/surface prep equipment, etc. A contractor in Florida may charge $4.00 to $4.50 a sq.ft. for something that a contractor in Nebraska may get $5.00-$5.50 per sq.ft. for (with the sq.ft. on project and scope of work being the same). I suggest that you add up all cost factors (as per those listed above); then double it to come up with an acceptible profit margin ... profits grow a business, working for wages won't.
Good luck in your new venture, or should I say "adventure."
Lindy A.

Have you tried Sim-Stain?

Have you tried Sim-Stain? It's easy to put down, it's waterbased, and it mottles. I played around with Butterfield Elements last year. You need to work it in with a brush. Very labor intensive, IMO. I tried some using a bassine brush on my swing machine. Ok, but still labor intensive. I used Sim-Stain on pavers last year. No sealer (I would not recommend it, but I wanted to see how the product stood up w/o sealer). I may come back and apply an exterior penetrating sealer.
I have the Sim-stain colors that closely match Kemiko/Butterfiend colors. Also easy to use with chip or foam brushes. If you have a light haand, won't bleed as much, but take care. It's WB, so you don't need 2 neutralize. Great color selection.
You can buy small sample sizes too. Sample sizes are very nice to play with. Linda has a great idea there! Try them out.

hlg's picture
Greg I would spend some time

Greg I would spend some time in the shop getting your techniques down before running out and slapping it down on a floor to see what happens. most of the companies out there will send you a sample pack to try. the stain market prices are falling faster than walmarts prices right now. you need to develop something that will set your company apart from the competition.
Once your established don't chase the low ballers they will only drop the price even further.

by the way: we fix $3.00 grind,overlay and stains.

John, I still cannot believe that idiot, walked in to the meeting and did that.


itsreallyconc's picture
made for an interesting day,

made for an interesting day, huh ? who would've expect'd that to happen ? every time they build a newer version of an ' idiot-proof ' computer, someone comes up w/a more advanc'd idiot !

head'd down to the shore this wed, hl - when's your next class ?

best [the original] if-you-call-i'll-answer yic-yac