Features & Benefits
Acid Staining, or acid-etch staining, uses different acid-based chemicals which react with the lime and metallic compounds found inside cement and on the aggregate. Once the acid reacts, it lightly etches the concrete, creating different colour effects determined by the specific combination of chemicals and techniques used.
- Acid stain finishes are generally more limited in colour options than dye staining, with "earthy" hues (browns, tans, blue-greens, etc.) being the most commonly available.
- Because of how the acids react with the cement, the final result is permanent and non-uniform.
- Similar to staining wood, acid staining will not hide the concrete surface below, but instead enhances it.
Dye Staining is a lot like painting. We use coloured dye in a carrying agent to penetrate the colour into the concrete. The carrying agent then evaporates, leaving the dye pigment in the pores of the cement.
- Dye staining offers greater and more vibrant colour options while achieving a more uniform, solid look.
- Because the dye penetrates the pores in the cement, dye staining is nearly as permanent as acid-etch staining.
Complexity 12345 SimpleComplex
Install Time 12345 ShortLong
Design Options 12345 FewMany
Bring Your Ideas!
Most of our decorative concrete projects are inspired by our customers. Typically they have an idea in mind, and we work with them to create their ideal look. You can trust our expertise to guide you to the most appropriate technique for your specific project.
What does your ideal finish look like?
Both dye staining and acid staining are great for decorative finishes. Adding a topcoat of epoxy or polishing the concrete after these treatments have been applied can give it a whole other level of WOW.
It's important to remember that acid staining does not "hide" the concrete below – it's designed to enhance it. Practically speaking, this means it won't hide cracks or other imperfections.
All concrete is different in qualities because of how it was placed. We pride ourselves on "doing our homework" to make sure the project goes according to plan. Prep and cleanliness is key!
We're interested in things such as the amount of free lime available in the pores of the cement, or if any existing sealers or chemical hardeners have closed up the pores. Once these details are satisfied the process involves liquid chemicals, timing, and – of course – technique.
Once we get started, we'll apply some test spots to ensure we can get a reaction, and to make sure you're happy with the finish. Once applied it is impossible to reverse!
Where To Use Acid & Dye Staining
This method/technique of finishing concrete works great with the following applications: