Contractor Instructions for Use
Quick Links:
What is Polacrete?
Test your Concrete
Tools Needed
Contractor Itemized Tools List for Large Jobs
Preparation
Applications
Saw Cutting
Finishing Up
Sealing
Summation
Positive Notes

Polacrete has been tested and used by commercial concrete applicators for over fifteen years.  Polacrete is simple to apply.  Polacrete finish will provide a tougher, safer and more durable surface, which will stand up better to new stains and last through seasons of summer’s penetrating sun and the harsh elements of winter.

What is Polacrete? 
Polacrete is the only product of its kind that penetrates into porous surfaces while expanding and creating a catalytic reaction between the four major components of Polacrete, which are:

1.  A microscopic expanding polymer that absorbs acrylic, microscopic resins and pure cement and forms a chemical molly anchor in all pores of properly etched concrete.

2.  Microscopic resins added for strength and to aid in the catalytic reaction. 

3.  A thin, penetrating acrylic, which carries the polymers and resins into the pores below the surface of properly cleaned and etched concrete.

4.  The highest grade of pure cement that is added at a very small amount in order to not reduce the viscosity necessary to obtain penetration, but in the second formulation of these four ingredients, a thicker mixture is used.  (See Instructions for Use)  With Both mixtures, you will get a catalytic reaction in approximately 20 mins. in warm weather (2 3 times slower in cold weather).  Polacrete should never be applied when air temperature is below 50 degrees.  An accelerator can be added to shorten drying time in cool weather.  No more than 5% or less than 1% should be used.  Warm water is also an accelerator on small jobs; you can add warm water to each batch.  You will increase drying time by a factor of 2 3.  However, compensate with a little extra powder mixture. (Check Price List for accelerators)

There are several important conditions to analyze before starting your project.  The first is evaluating the porosity and internal water content of the concrete for the purpose of establishing the best mix and quantity of Polacrete that will be needed to complete the job.  Concrete slabs are like sponges.  Slabs poured with heavy amounts of sand and gravel (aggregate) are more porous.  The pores soak up moisture from the ground and water that is put directly on the surface.  The slabs can become saturated from heavy rains, watering and in some cases, high water tables.  As the sun and wind dry the top, concrete will react by sponging up moisture from beneath.  Water on or just below the slab surface can mix with Polacrete, diluting the consistency.  Consequently, a dry and porous slab will sponge up the material.  If the surface is wet and/or smooth, mix with the minimum acrylic formula.  If the surface is dry and rough with exposed aggregate, mix with the maximum acrylic formula.  The water you apply to rinse off the acid bath is not a problem with dry and rough surfaces, but should be removed or allowed to dry when the surface is smooth, covered from sun or wind, doesn’t drain well or has been exposed to water saturation.

RECOMMENDATIONS: 
It is not recommended that you attempt to apply this product in extreme cold or wet weather.  Polacrete penetrates and adheres best to a rough surface with open pores and exposed aggregate.  To achieve this, it is recommended to use muriatic acid (not included in kit) to properly etch concrete surfaces for maximum bonding.  Always use full nose and mouth respirators and follow label instructions.  Never use large quantities of acid or any chemicals at one time due to danger of ingestions (follow label instructions and use respirator.)  Allow acid/water mixture to set for 5 10 minutes (depending on finish) on test area before rinsing with water.  If water does not bead and the surface feels rough to the touch, the etching process has taken, indicating that the surface should be ready for the application of Polacrete.

NOTE:  Do not use muriatic acid on asphalt surfaces.  Instead, use asphalt cleaner and oil remover.

TEST YOUR CONCRETE: 
If your driveway or concrete slab has previously been painted, stained or sealed, you must remove these finishes before applying Polacrete.  Most of these finishes will not be able to be removed with muriatic acid and may require professional sand blasting or other commercial method of removal.  Additionally, look for foreign substances that may have been splattered or dripped on the surface, such as road tar, paint or gum.  These substances would not have been removed by the oil cleaner or muriatic acid and will have to be removed by grinding or by using a proper chemical remover, such as Gum Off.  Any grinding on high spots should have already been completed before acid etching.  If your driveway or concrete slab contains waterproofing additives that are sometimes used in residential driveway applications, Polacrete will not penetrate, nor properly bond to the surface.  If you are unsure of the presence of waterproofing additives or surface sealants that may have been added to or applied on a slab, it is recommended you test with water.  If water beads up or separates on the surface, you cannot apply Polacrete until condition is changed, if possible.

Fractures, cracks or crumbling in a concrete slab may be due to high lime content or from too few expansion joints, earthquakes, poor original concrete mixture, earth movement, tree roots or heavy equipment combined with over watering adjacent to concrete.  Severely damaged sections may require complete removal, compaction, drilling, adding rebar and checking for expansive soil (ask customer) and repouring.  Because of its liquid application form, Polacrete is also a crack repair product.  It can fill some very small and shallow fractures and also by adding more silica sand you can fill and repair large cracks and depressions.  You must perform oil spot cleaning (STEP 1) and etching process with muriatic acid solution (STEP 2) before patching to enhance penetration and bonding.  Polacrete is designed to protect the old concrete surface from the elements of weather while enhancing its cosmetic look, also repairing damaged or substandard concrete.

TOOLS NEEDED: 
Selecting the most effective tool to properly apply Polacrete can enhance the finish.  Use a broom for rough surfaces or a squeegee for smooth surfaces.  Squeegees eliminate the need for additional “finish strokes”, but may jump on very rough surfaces.  Broom bristles require “finish strokes” and will always leave some brushstroke marks.  For scrubbing oil spots with oil remover/cleaner, use a long handled, stiff bristle (Palmyra bristle) broom (8” 12” wide.)  For prepared surfaces with smoother textures, a long handled floor squeegee is used and also helps to level any small low spots not previously noticed.  You should also have a small, window-type squeegee.  A 1/2” electric drill and paddle mixer is the best mixing method.  You will also need a strong stir stick to properly scrape and mix sediment from the bottom of the bucket before mixing is complete, (use 5 gallon bucket to mix product), large sponges, latex gloves, respirators and cement trowels.  A large drop cloth placed in a strategic and accessible area is recommended as a workstation for mixing and storage of tools.  For concrete surfaces that are flat, don’t drain well or are covered from the sun, a squeegee can be used to remove puddles and to speed up the drying process, especially in cold weather, after rinsing off the muriatic acid solution.  Have a garden hose with a spray nozzle ready for adding water to the muriatic acid, surface rinsing, removing T.S.P. rinse solution and cleaning tools after each applicable step and to keep the hot concrete cool.  Your biggest tool will be a high-speed grinder with a 7” diamond cutting blade.

CONTRACTOR ITEMIZED TOOL LIST FOR LARGE JOBS

hand trowels
small squeegee (window type)
24” and 30” squeegee (floor type)
12” stiff bristle brush for cleaning spots
24” and 30” medium bristle nylon broom
paddle mixer
½” variable (preferred) speed drill
levels 24”, 48” and 6’
5 gallon Hudson type garden sprayer
heavy duty high speed grinder
double diamond concrete grinding and cutting blade
diamond blade for 7” worm drive saw for small cuts
7” worm drive saw
two 5 gallon buckets for mixing
sponges for cleaning
latex gloves
two proper respirators for acid wash
5 gallon buckets for cleaning, mixing and trash removal

Approximate cost = $750 to $1,000 depending on where purchased check Home Depot, but we would expect contractors already own most of these tools.

PREPARATION: 
Begin by trimming grass or plants that may be growing over the sides of the driveway surface (use worm drive saw and blade).  Sweep off the driveway to remove debris.  Be concerned with small leaves or debris (spray water into trees or bushes to cause loose leaves to drop before sweeping) that may drop or blow onto the surface during the application of Polacrete, as they will leave lines, grooves or marks.  Do not hose off at this time, first remove all oil spots and vacuum.  Remove oil remover/cleaner, liquid mix, powder mix and silica sandbags from your vehicle and set aside with muriatic acid container(s) and tools.  PLEASE READ THE REMAINING DIRECTIONS AND INSTRUCTIONS BEFORE STARTING.

STEP 1 OIL SPOT CLEANING:
Open the oil remover/cleaner container.  Begin by pouring a small amount on the center of several oil stains at a time (even spots that you have previously cleaned with another cleaner.)  This will prevent wasting remover/cleaner (especially on hot days) that will soak completely in and dry out.  Spread over stain and let set for 10 15 minutes.  Scrub vigorously and repeat as necessary.  Be sure all oil residues are removed.  If necessary, water test to see if area repels or beads water.  Do it again and look for more dirty brown bubbles from hidden residue.  If all the oil is not totally removed, Polacrete will not penetrate and completely bond on that area and dark discoloration from remaining oil residue may bleed through several weeks after applying Polacrete.  Oil and rust stain discoloration may still remain, but will diminish after the muriatic acid solution is applied.  Rinse, brush with water, vacuum up and take to proper disposal site later.

STEP 2 USE OF MURIATIC ACID FOR SURFACE ETCHING AND CLEANING:
You will need the muriatic acid, medium bristle broom, stir stick, hose and empty bucket.  Plan to use at least one gallon of muriatic acid mixed with one to two parts water for 200 to 250 sq.ft. of surface.  A simple rule for determining the strength is as follows: If the surface is porous and rough, a weak solution can be used.  If the surface is smooth, a stronger solution should be mixed.  Following the manufacturer’s safety warnings and instruction, mix one part muriatic acid with two parts water for a weak solution (light cleaning.)  Mix one part muriatic acid with one part water for a strong solution (heavy cleaning and light etching.)  Stir solution immediately and spread over area immediately (30 seconds) and continue to broom acid over high spots for 5 mins.  Use full strength on stubborn ruse spots or concrete that will only clean with full strength solutions.

1. You must always use full and properly designed respirators to avoid breathing acid (follow manufacturer’s instructions)
2. Do not apply acid wash in windy conditions
3. Use caution tape to warn people away from working area
4. Never spread large amounts of any chemical at one time
5. Never use indoors
6. DO NOT WALK ON GRASS WITH ACID ON SHOES!
7. Always block cutter with sandbag and vacuum up residue for disposal

Beginning at the top of the driveway, pour on a section at a time and spread with broom (don’t brush vigorously to clean, acid works best when left alone and on semi dry concrete) quickly (30 seconds) until the entire surface is covered.  After approximately 5 10 minutes, the foaming will stop, which means the solution has done its job and is becoming inert.  Take care not to allow the active solution to run on sidewalks or other concrete surfaces that you do not intend to protect with Polacrete.  If you do, immediately flush area with water. Rinse surface and surrounding area with plenty of water.  This dilution will make the solution completely inert and will not harm surrounding surfaces.  All plants must be protected with plastic if they are close to concrete.  If you get a lot of acid on grass, it will turn it brown, but grass will be green again in 2 weeks.  Allow surface to dry and be free from puddling (especially if slab is covered, enclosed or has been subjected to heavy water saturation).  At this point, apply TSP per manufacturer’s instructions and thoroughly rinse.  An unsaturated slab that is sloped, open to the sun and appears to dry quickly is probably ready for Polacrete immediately after TSP washing.

STEP 3 REPAIRS / GRINDING: 
A good and permanent repair of all concrete surfaces is not possible unless you have followed Step 1 completely and been very thorough on the removal of any foreign material, such as oil, paint or any coatings of any kind.  Secondly, follow Step 2 if surface is not already rough, porous and clean.  Any bumps, pieces of previously dropped old concrete mixes and roughness protruding above the desired surface can be removed with a grinder or with a concrete hammer and chisel.  All rough areas, cracks and low areas will first have Polacrete mixed in a very thin formulation of the four ingredients mentioned above.  Gravity helps penetration, therefore the Applicator must understand that this thin formulation is not going to soak into vertical surfaces (such as cracks, upright posts, etc.) as rapidly as flat surfaces and therefore should be applied with a brush or sponge 2 3 times until it is visibly noticeable that this mixture has begun soaking into surface.  Applicator must not apply this first thin mixture over more area than you can apply a second, thicker mixture of Polacrete Part A within 5 10 mins. after applying first thin, penetrating mixture.

APPLICATIONS
DIFFERENT MIXTURES: 
The mixture ratios change to fit the job or surface.  A vertical surface requires a thicker and heavier mixture, but must first be applied over thin, penetrating mixture before first mixture dries to continue the fusion so that all material is connected to the first thin, penetrating and expanding material that has formed millions of molly anchors chemically and is the reason Polacrete can only be removed by taking some of the concrete surface it soaked into with it when properly applied.  DO NOT LET FIRST MIXTURE DRY!

Experience with trowels and squeegees are a tremendous advantage if you are a first time Applicator.  Practice on a small, out of the way spot or on a piece of plywood.    Polacrete can be spread smoothly and evened out with a squeegee or hand trowel, depending on the surface desired.  Color pigment may be added to the mixture for desired effect.  Color pigments are also available (See Price List).  First time Applicators should never attempt a driveway or large patio without the help of a professional Applicator or experienced contractor.  After all cracks are filled, rough areas are smoothed and low areas are raised and this repair mixture has hardened, any rough edges should be ground smooth with a high speed grinder and a diamond cupped blade (can be purchased at Home Depot).  Now you are ready for resurfacing.

STEP 4 RESURFACING WITH Polacrete
Before you begin this process, you should have already decided which application tool to use and at what strength and volume you will be mixing Polacrete.  Before final finishing mixture is applied, you must apply an application of liquid mix 10 parts acrylic to 1 part powder mix use a medium bristle broom to spread liquid mixture, leaving wet, but no puddles and no dry spots very important.  Do not apply over an area too large to complete resurfacing process before penetration mixture dries.

FIRST APPLICATION: 
Make sure Polacrete is uniform thickness; smooth out solution and buildup.  If you have a smooth surface and choose a squeegee, you can spread or smooth solution buildup and texture with both back and forth strokes, but finish with pulling squeegee or broom behind you to leave uniform and remove footprints.  On smooth or damp surfaces, some stroke marks (especially from the broom) will tempt you to go back on some of the area that you just finished, but it is not normally necessary.  After drying, stroke marks, if finished with a broom, will blend into the original texture of the concrete, providing that product was properly mixed.  In warm weather surface heat and direct sunlight will speed up the drying process.  It is important that the solution doesn’t dry out before you achieve the final texture desired.  This is why you should complete one section at a time until you get experienced.  You must apply water to cool concrete to keep heat down or product will not have time to penetrate before curing begins.  Always coordinate task and apply quickly.  Application of Polacrete is the fast, easy, fun part, but you must work quickly, especially in heat.

SECOND APPLICATION: 
Polacrete, under normal conditions, will be 1 ½ part liquid mix, 1 part powder and 2 parts silica sand.  Mix well, removing sediment from the bottom.  In hot weather add 25% - 50% (or adjust to job, such as overhead repairs mix drier) more liquid mix.  Working from side to side and top to bottom (if on a slope), pour enough solution to spread across a section approximately 10 ft. to 20 ft. wide (use lesser figure if using broom and temperature is hot.)  It is okay to step on the wet solution while spreading, but not while finishing strokes are applied.  Continue each section by spreading, texturing and stirring the sediment from the bottom of the bucket before each application.  Don’t forget to keep concrete surface cooled off with water in hot weather.  This second application gives you a smoother result.  (Never apply over dry, hot concrete.)  Saw cutting to relieve stress can be done between first and second application.

SAW CUTTING: 
The purpose of saw cutting is to weaken your concrete by making it easier to crack in the bottom of those cuts, instead of at random, in irregular patterns and out of control.  Therefore, let’s call saw cutting with a concrete saw and diamond blade “stress cuts” for the purpose of relieving the stress, which accumulates in concrete through heat causing your concrete to grow and expand when it is hot.  Therefore, without these “controlled cuts” you will have cracks if your concrete is in the sun for most of the day in a warm climate.  NEVER PROMISE YOUR CUSTOMER THAT THEY WILL NEVER HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT CRACKS YOU CAN NEVER GUARANTEE AGAINST CRACKING.

EXPANSION JOINTS:  Expansion joints used to be done in lieu of saw cutting.  Thirty plus years ago they were filled with a 2 X 4 cut in half and not always pressure treated.  Then people realized that an expansion joint of this size was overkill.  Therefore, it went to a much more narrow expansion joint, sometimes still filled with a ¾ in. piece of wood, felt or other flexible type sealants.  Today a more intelligent, economical and cosmetically more attractive way to relieve the stress in concrete caused by heat is to make appropriate stress cuts as described.

DECORATIVE STRESS CUTS:  For those people seeking a cut above average in the look of their stress cuts, there are various shapes, widths, sizes of diamond cutting bits for various pieces of equipment that can be contracted for and rented from local rental equipment companies to give your cuts that extra bit of attractiveness.  However, it can get very expensive and is not a benefit, except if you like the look from a cosmetic standpoint better than just a normal, even cut.  The width of saw cuts to relieve stress for expansion purposes or personal desires from an aesthetic standpoint can be adjusted, as the customer may desire.  You may be wiser to arrange with a local concrete saw cutting company.

FINISHING UP:
You are now finished with the successful application of Polacrete.  Take care not to allow any traffic or water to get on the surface.  You must tape off the area to alert traffic.  Be sure automatic sprinklers are turned off before you start.  If there is leftover solution in the bucket, you may wish to just cap the bucket, set aside for later disposal.  Rinse off the tools and use a wet cloth or sponge to mop up any Polacrete drippings that may have been spilled or spread on unintended surfaces.  Try to clean as you go (much easier.)  Any solution, which may have been spread or spilled on lawns, plants or shrubs, must be sponged off immediately and removed from hand tools.  Always leave jobs meticulously clean.

DRYING TIME:  Allow from one to three hours, depending on the temperature, for the surface to dry before walking on it or saw cutting.  Allow at least 24 - 48 hours, again depending on the temperature, for the surface to dry before driving or parking vehicles on the surface.  The new Polacrete surface will take 1 to 2 weeks to totally cure, much less than freshly poured concrete.

SEALING: 
ABC Concrete Repairä strongly recommends the sealing of all concrete.  Sealers come in a wide range of prices, colors and types.  Let’s keep it simple and tell you that we do not believe in color sealers because the color is too easily worn off as the sealer is worn off.  It also fades in traffic areas faster.  Our experience has proven to us at ABC Concrete Repairä that color should be added into Polacrete at the time of resurfacing. (See Instructions for Use)

If you are reluctant to add color pigment at time of resurfacing, then a penetrating stain can always be added after resurfacing, but before sealing.  However, you are giving yourself an extra step and an extra expense because the stain will cost you approximately $.35 - $.45 per ft. for material only.  Color pigment added to Polacrete will cost you about $.01 - $.02 per sq.ft. and saves the labor of an extra step.  It also allows you to seal as soon as Polacrete has hardened.  ABC Concrete Repair does not sell lacquer sealers because of a common problem associated with lacquer turning yellow and blistering when used as a surface sealer outdoors.

The two types of sealer we sell are:
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The most commonly used sealer in the world, easiest to apply and most cost effective.  It is a thin, penetrating acrylic sealer that can be sprayed from a garden sprayer or a regular paint sprayer, applied with a roller or a sponge.  The key to applying penetrating sealers is to not overdo it.  One gallon should cover approximately 250 350 ft., depending on the porosity.  When applying penetrating acrylic sealers, watch for spots that seem to be over applied; i.e., too much material that does not soak in readily.  If necessary, blot up any excess sealer not penetrated within 4 - 5 mins.  Approximate cost will be $.50 per ft. or less, depending on porosity.

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The other sealer we recommend for garage floors, inside entry, concrete floors, over stain job to protect and give your floor a polished look, concrete counters, showers, etc., is a clear, two part epoxy.  It is best applied with a roller and brush and should be applied liberally.  A two-part kit makes 1½ gallons ABC, INC.’s minimum order is one half this amount and covers 100 125 sq.ft., depending on the thickness of application and porosity.  Approximate cost will be $1.00 per ft. for a super hard, high gloss, beautiful, clear epoxy topcoat.  Make sure you either buy the correct epoxy rollers from a local supply house or at Home Depot.  A poor quality roller will greatly affect your job.

ABC Concrete Repair has tested 12 top penetrating sealers and knows that ours is the best for the money.  Some we tested were 10 times our price with the same results.  ABC Concrete Repair has also tested most epoxy sealers and knows we are selling you a great sealer at a very reasonable price.

SUMMATION: 
There are many repair and resurfacing products that can be purchased.  We see those that are $165 for 50 lbs. of powder mixture and as low as $20 for 40 lbs. of powder mixture.  We have tested these products, along with others, and there is no comparison to Polacrete.  But, remember, these premixed powder mixtures include silica sand, which is always about 2/3 of the total mixture.  Therefore, when you compare Polacrete ’s price for 25 lbs. of our powder mix for $49, you are really going to end up with 75 lbs. of material after the addition of sand to Polacrete.

There is presently no other product in the world that we know of here at ABC Concrete Repair which has the ability to penetrate into your concrete surface while expanding and hardening, thereby making millions of your own chemical catalyzed anchors.  That is why Polacrete becomes a part of your concrete surface and will never come up when properly applied, except where you may have movement of your slab from over saturated soil and heavy equipment, lime pockets, tree roots breaking and raising your concrete, earthquakes, causing breakage with parts of your surface or too few stress cuts.  However, Polacrete will still be attached to those pieces.  Should that happen to you, you can very easily repair instead of replacing at a huge savings while joining the green movement and helping reduce waste.

POSITIVE NOTES: 
We have never had a contractor use Polacrete who wasn’t thrilled at the ease of application and the ability to raise low areas and edges to nothing with no release of Polacrete where standing water had been a problem before.  We know that if you decide to purchase even the smallest package (Single Units) of Part A and Part B for about $97, not including your sand, which you purchase locally to save freight, your muriatic acid, T.S.P., tape and plastic, needed to protect paint, plaster, landscaping, etc.  This size order will take care of normal repairs and resurfacing on 125+ sq.ft. area at approximately 1/8 in. thickness.  If you need to raise an area for drainage purposes and to prevent standing water, then our smallest order will cover less area.  To estimate the amount of extra material you will need, a good rule of thumb for raising a low area that has broken and settled is for every ¼ in. of fill you need to feather out 1 ft.  So, for a 1 in. fill you would need to feather out 4 ft. to give your concrete the new, flat look you want.  (Example: 10” wide 1” low equals 10’ X 4’ or 40 sq.ft. of extra area at ¼” thick or 80 sq.ft. of extra area at 1/8” thick.)

Remember, all other products that claim to be a permanent fix for concrete with bad surface problems are only coatings applied with some form of adhesive that will, in time, dry out, causing delamination of whatever that surfacing product was.  In fifteen years of using Polacrete, we have never had a delamination problem.  Our goal has always been from the beginning to develop and sell the best product at the lowest price.  That is what we have accomplished with Polacrete.