Causes of Concrete Damage

When you enter a construction site and notice cracks and sunken areas, it can be stressful for everyone involved. Moisture problems, improper curing, and other outside influences can cause this to happen in most areas where concrete has been placed. If you are tasked with polishing concrete or maintenance, this previous damage can make the job more difficult and time-consuming.

If the floor is not thoroughly inspected, it can cause even more damage than is already there, especially if you cannot figure out what caused the cracks and sunken areas. There are numerous ways that concrete can be damaged, so it’s important to identify this damage early. Having the right knowledge and tools for such a task can help anyone perform the job at hand.

What Leads to Concrete Damage?

  1. Improper Installation

When there is an abundant amount of moisture during the mixing and curing processes, this can be a main cause of improper concrete installation. This can be caused by the contractor being in a rush, or simply not being as qualified to do the job the correct way. Signs of incorrect installation can include spalling, blisters, and crazing which causes damage that needs to be fixed before you can continue with your main project.

  1. Outdoor Elements

For concrete floors that are outdoors, these are going to be constantly affected by the elements we untimely can’t control at times. Natural causes such as wind, freeze-thaw occurrences, and rain can all cause damage to these concrete floors. The continuous freeze-thaw cycle that can occur slowly breaks down concrete, which causes the cracks you might see. Moisture is the primary cause for damage because its ability to freeze. The concrete expands and puts pressure on the material inside which the end result could cause major damage.

  1. Corrosion

The biggest cause of concrete deterioration is corrosion. With the reinforced concrete floors, the steel bars that are inserted can become rusted. Even though most of the time the concrete offers its own layer of protection, chloride ions from salts can reach these bars through cracks in the concrete. Because this is a typical and reoccurring issue, having the concrete be maintained and installed correctly the first time is important.

How to Protect Your Concrete:

Although damage may be uncontrollable, proper maintenance can help prevent damage from getting worse over time. As mentioned earlier, proper installation can ensure that the concrete lasts, but a quality polish can also help prevent deterioration. Proper concrete grinding is a crucial step in making sure you have the most ideal concrete surface and getting rid of any unnecessary objects in the concrete. Before starting to work on the concrete, there should always be an inspection. If you find out about the quality and age of the floor, you will be able to better assess whether you need to fill only the cracks or replace everything completely

U.S. Saws is an innovator in the tool industry.  Concrete requires the right knowledge and tools to get the job done the right way. Knowing what causes damages to these floors and how to maintain them is essential. As there are many factors to consider for your next concrete project, engaging with a company to help guide you will ensure your project is completed promptly in the right manner.   Contact U.S. Saws today to find all of your concrete floor needs!

 

How to Diamond Grind a Concrete Floor

Concrete floor grinding is used for removing old coatings, smoothing surfaces, and prepping concrete for epoxy. If you want the best results and want this process done as quickly as possible, diamond grinding should always be your number one choice for your next project. This is done by using diamond pads that open up the floor you are attending to and give you the proper surface you are looking for in the end.

Diamonds are hard materials that are able to implement more sustainable scratch patterns into concrete. If you need to grind away epoxy, mastic, or even paint, diamond pads can do this efficiently. Knowing how to use these pads and having the right equipment for the job can save you time and money for your next concrete flooring project.

Deciding the Correct Diamond Tooling:

Having the right concrete tooling is important before any concrete grinding is done. Depending on the type of concrete surface, different types of pads are needed. For softer concrete surfaces, you won’t need as an aggressive pad but one with finer grit. Harder surfaces require more aggressive grind with an abrasive grit. The 7″ POLISHING PAD #3000 GRIT is the perfect diamond pad that is high-quality and are able to expose aggregate in the concrete surface you’re working on. These lighter grit pads are great if you are wanting a more intense and polished surface as the end result.

 Time to Get Started:

Diamond pads are important, but so is the grinder you are going to be using as well. The VSG-10 (Variable Speed Grinder) is an easy to use, concrete floor grinding and concrete floor polishing machine that will prep concrete surfaces in areas that cannot be accessed by larger equipment. This is an excellent choice for large and small projects. This grinder accepts different grinding plates and pads with a variety of bonds and grits to make sure you are able to use whatever fits your project needs the best.

When you have chosen your grinder, it is time to start the actual process. You want to begin with a slow forward motion, moving left and right slowly to keep the concrete level as you are grinding. When doing this, the steadier you are, the better so no sudden movements cause damage to the concrete. Once you have gone over the floor the first time with this process, make sure you vacuum at the end. This is essential to remove any dirt or debris from the concrete to prevent gouging. Having a dust collector such as the ULTRA VAC 1250 | DUST COLLECTOR, can help this process go more smoothly and save you valuable time at the end of the day.

U.S. Saws is an innovator in the tool industry.  Diamond grinding is essential for all concrete flooring needs that will take your project to the next level.  As there are many factors to consider in choosing the proper concrete pads for your project, engaging with a company to help guide you to the right knowledge and diamond grinding pads will ensure your project is completed promptly in the right manner.  Contact U.S. Saws today to find the diamond grinding pads to meet your specific concrete needs.

 

Concrete Vacuums 101

Dust and debris are normal outcomes when cutting, polishing, and grinding during a project. Because of the abundance of dust, it can become time-consuming and difficult at times to clean it all up. You can use sweeping and dry brushing, but taking another hour to clean up is the last thing you want to do after a long day working on a project. If you want to save time and money, concrete vacuums are your number one choice. Normal vacuums you use around the house aren’t strong enough to handle concrete debris; you need a high-quality industrial vacuum. These are one of the most important tools in the construction business not just because it makes the job easier, but for worker safety as well.

Why Are They Important?

The saying “work smarter, not harder” comes into full effect when it comes to using concrete vacuums. You can spend an extra hour cleaning up alone after already spending eight hours on a tough project if you’re not using an industrial vacuum. These types of vacuums are great to clean up ultra-fine dust and powder after cutting. This is a crucial process because the dust particles can cause the floor you are working on to be slick without you even noticing. Debris and dust during a project causes it to be airborne as well. Without a concrete vacuum, this can cause these particles to get in your eyes and nose which can cause overwhelmingly health hazards.

Make Sure You Have the Right Vacuum:

Depending on the project you are working on, you need to make sure you have the right size to ensure safety and to make the project go as smooth as possible. There are four possible indicators that the vacuum you are using is too small:

1. You constantly have to empty it
2. There is dust still on the surface
3. When cutting, polishing, or grinding there is airborne dust
4. The filter is constantly clogged

Even though at times these vacuums can be pricy, it is worth spending more to ensure the safety of all workers present. Not only can improper vacuums cause damage to yourself, but to your tools as well. Grinding and cutting with layers of dust can damage your tools. The dust build up can lead to diamond tooling wear because of the abrasive nature of concrete dust. Having the right vacuum for the job will help you keep your tools working properly and save you money from having to spend money on new ones.

When looking for a concrete vacuum, make U.S Saws your number one choice. Our Ultra Vac 1250 Dust Collector is the perfect fit for any project. With its lightweight and durable foundation, this vacuum can handle any job small or large. Already have a vacuum but need parts? U.S. Saws has you covered! With adapters, hoses, and poly cams, we have what you need to make sure your vacuum is working efficiently and properly for your projects in the future.

U.S. Saws is an innovator in the tool industry.  Concrete vacuums are a crucial tool that will take your project to the next level with safety and progression.  As there are many factors to consider in choosing the proper vacuum for your project, engaging with a company to help guide you to the right vacuum will ensure your project is completed promptly in the right manner and as safe as possible.  Contact U.S. Saws today to find the concrete vacuum that meets your specific needs.

Ins and Outs of Core Drilling

Core drilling is one of the most important aspects in the construction field and a precise concrete cutting technique. This type of drilling allows you to cut holes into concrete, paved surfaces, and brick. This precise technique is used for those preparing pipes and cables, but also ducting for HVAC purposes. Because this type of drilling is special, you need to know the basics and the safety needed to have successful drilling when the time comes.

Basics of Core Drilling:

To get started on your core drilling, you need a coring tool (core drill). With the purpose of cutting large holes, this type of drill is able to cut through most desired surfaces. Cement, tile, concrete, and sandstone are just a few of the surfaces this powerful and useful tool can cut through. The main element is the core drill bit, also known as the annular cutter. This bit is a cylinder element that is hollow, usually with an abrasive surface.

How it Works:

When the mounted teeth are attached to the surface you are cutting, the rotation of the core drill bit starts to make a slow circle shaped hole. It should be noted that the diameter and the size of the bit determines how far it can go until it is full of the core materials, which are the cylindrical pieces of uncut materials. Once this is full, the drill isn’t able to go any further in the process. Extract all the core materials from the surface you are working on which creates the cylindrical hole. Do this drilling and extracting process until you have cut the hole of your desired length on the surface you are cutting.

Preparation Before Drilling:

Before any drilling can happen, you need to make sure there are not any pipes, cables, or other utilities under the surface you were planning on cutting. Once this is done, measure the thickness of the wall so you know ahead of time how deep you need to cut. This will save you a tremendous amount of time if you’re able to drill through the wall in a single pass.

Once you have done these steps, it is time to configure the drill. You need to make sure you have selected the correct drill bit with the right length for the surface you’re about to cut. If you are using a power drill, you need to attach the core bit to the arbor and then the arbor-bit second. With these two in place, then you can attach the guide drill bit. Make sure your drill is on the desired setting for the surface and type of hole you are trying to make and start drilling!

Safety With Core Drills:

Because this technique takes a lot of precision and is heavy-duty, safety is always the main focus. As you probably already know, eye goggles are a must to make sure dust and debris do not get in your eyes. Make sure your shoes are non-slip as well. Slipping when using this drilling technique can cause you to have uneven holes. Core drilling can be loud at times so ear plugs are also recommended for this type of job. Investing in the right tools will make this job more safe and easier on you as well. Getting the right high-quality drill and bits for your project will allow for less possibilities of issues with your cutting and your safety.

U.S. Saws is an innovator in the tool industry.  Core drilling is a popular technique in this industry because of the many different surfaces you can use it for. Knowing how to use it and having the right materials take your project to the next level. As there are many factors to consider in choosing your next core drilling project, engaging with a company to help guide you will ensure your project is completed promptly in the right manner.   Contact U.S. Saws today to find all of your core drilling needs!

 

Five Key Tools for Municipal Water and Sewer Workers

The job of a municipal water and sewer worker is not easy.  Accessing those water and sewer systems takes a lot of grit and elbow grease.  While these jobs are not the most glamorous or cushy, they do provide a significant service to the community without which access to clean water would be limited.  Getting dirty may be part of the job, but there are ways to reduce the dirt and the labor in order to make the job a little easier on the worker.  The following are five key tools to help make a municipal water and sewer workers life a little less complicated.

Manhole Cover Lifter

Manhole covers are a necessary part of our water and sewage systems.  These covers are designed to protect our water systems from access by unqualified individuals.  Manhole covers are incredibly heavy for that specific reason.  The weight of some manhole covers can exceed 900 pounds.  Without the proper tools, most manhole covers are not easily lifted by the average human being. Companies like US SAWS have manufactured manhole cover lifters to reduce the effort needed by municipal workers to lift manhole covers and access water systems in order to make necessary repairs and conduct required maintenance.  Because of the varying sizes and weights of manhole covers across the country, US SAWS has developed different lifters for different sized manhole covers.  For covers weighing 300 pounds or less, the Supreme Duty Collapsible Dolly Magnetic Lifter is the perfect tool.  Equipped with rubber wheels and a supreme duty magnet, this lifter is ideal for covers up to 36 inches in diameter, and it breaks down easily for quick storage.  Manhole covers weighing up to 600 pounds may be easily moved using the Aluminum Heavy Duty Collapsible Dolly.  This cover lifter is also ideal for covers up to 36 inches in diameter, comes equipped with eight inch hard wheels, it also relies on a supreme duty magnet.  This system is perfect for uneven textured surfaces and provides dual position lifting points.  Heavy manhole covers weighing about 900 pounds require an even stronger lifter.  The Curved Heavy Duty Magnetic Lifter makes fast work of those heavy manhole covers while protecting workers from back injury.  This lifter is equipped with eight inch hard wheels and lifts using a mega duty magnet.  It also folds down for easy transportation and storage.

Valve Exerciser

One task of waste and water workers is securing the quality and quantity of water accessed by the community.  In order to ensure the access and flow of water remain consistent and steady, regular maintenance is required for all the systems.  Perhaps the most crucial component of our water and waste systems are the valves located throughout the systems.  Valves are critical to regulating, directing, and controlling water.  It is important that is valves do not become stiff and rigid I must be exorcised in order to maintain flexibility in order to prevent issues with backflow.  Many of these valves are not in easily accessible locations.  U.S. Saws has developed battery powered valve exercisers to make the job easier on municipal water workers.  One such valve exerciser is the VEX-400.  This powerful and portable valve exerciser uses 18 Volt batteries and a Metabo drill motor to get the job done, providing workers the benefit of a heavy duty powerful tool that can be used in tight and awkward locations Pump.

Utility Pump

One great foe of every water worker is the problem of standing water.  Standing water Makes it difficult for workers to access many underground structures including meter pits and valve boxes.  It is essential that the water is removed so that the workers have a way to access their work site.   One easy way to do this it’s through the use of a utility pump.  U.S. SAWS is a proud supplier of the Dewalt Battery Powered BP1520 Battery Pump. This powerful pump has a PVC body and housing protecting it from rust, corrosion, dents, and bends. It is powered with either a 20 Volt DeWalt or 18 Volt Milwaukee battery and with its slim design works well in tight spaces that are off in the bane of a municipal workers’ day.  This powerful tool can pump 15 gallons a minute and weighs only 6 pounds making it the perfect tool for backbreaking work.

Hand-Held Saws

What water workers toolbox is complete without a saw?  At some point water workers will be required to cut pipes in confined underground spaces.  Most saws are powered electrically or using gas; however, tight and confined spaces make using electrical or gas powered saws less than perfect options.  U.S. Saws has developed air powered handheld saws.  this technology not only makes the job easier for the worker, but protects him or her from harmful fumes emitted buy gas powered saws.  One such saw is the HS-125 Hand-Held Air Powered Saw. This air powered saw has no combustible parts, requires low maintenance, and has a lightweight design.  It has a maximum cutting depth of five inches and is ideal for confined space cutting.  An added bonus of this super saw is that it allows for wet or dry cutting, making it a highly versatile saw for any workers toolbox.

Belly Saws

The 5th tool required to make water and sewer workers lives simpler is the belly saw.  The belly saw is the perfect tool for cutting pipes in what conditions and its design makes it safer to operate than most other saws.  From the guard design that covers the blade to the straps that attach directly to the pipe in order to prevent kickback, the belly saw is a utility worker’s best friend.  of course there are different belly saws that are dependent on the size of the pipes that need to be cut.  One such saw is the US SAWS Air Powered Belly Saw.  This offering from U.S. SAWS varies depending on the sides of the pipe and comes and offerings that range from 8 to 24 inch pipes, 24 to 48 inch pipes, and 48 to 72 inch pipes.  The fact that these saws are air powered only increases the benefit to the workers, relieving them from harmful fumes and allowing them access to powerful tools in wet conditions.  This saw make easy work of PVC, ductile iron, cast iron, and other heavy duty materials through the use of its Tiger Tooth blade.  With its safe and accurate cuts the air powered belly saw is a must have for every municipal worker.

U.S. SAWS is a leader in the underground tool industry.  Contact us today to discuss updating your tool box!

 

Diamonds Are a Contractor’s Best Friend

We aren’t talking about the jewelry or even the precious stones extracted from the Earth.  A contractor’s favorite diamond is a synthetic diamond, man-made and created in a lab, where natural processes are mimicked to create a diamond.  Synthetic diamonds match the hardness of natural diamonds but are more readily available.  As the process of creating synthetic diamonds may become expensive, synthetic diamonds are typically used as grit or small crystals and a wide variety of industrial equipment.

Diamond Blades/Grinders/Chains

Diamond saw blades are equipped with small diamond crystals that are attached as grit to the saw blade itself.  This grit provides superior grinding action that works in conjunction with the standard cutting action of the saw blade. The result of this mix of grinding and cutting provides an efficient and precise cut.  Diamond saw blades are excellent for use in cutting concrete, brick, and tile.  Diamond blades vary in size and grit.  Because of this, it is important to understand the type of job the diamond blade is working to complete.  Having the right size blade and the proper mesh grit on the saw blade will ensure your job is completed properly.  Larger blades used with walk-behind saws make quick work of concrete while a smaller saw with a medium-mesh is perfect for glass and porcelain.

Diamond grinders work essentially the same way as diamond blades, however instead of cutting materials, they grind them to create smooth surfaces that can be polished and sealed or even painted. In large concrete finishing jobs, diamond grinders work well to smooth out divots and pits prior to sealing and painting.  Large jobs that require significant grinding in order to achieve a smooth finish require a grinder with a large mesh, or larger diamond bits.  Smaller surfaces that need a more polished finish are better off with a small, tightly knit grit to achieve the high sheen.

Chainsaws also come with diamond tool options.  While the diamond chains naturally cut with better precision through multiple mediums, perhaps the greatest advantage of diamond chains lies in their protection of the user.  Chainsaws are notoriously dangerous.  Protective gear is required for their use, from goggles to steel toed boots and thick gloves.  One of the greatest dangers of chainsaws is kickback.  Kickback is when there is an unexpected upward turn of the guide bar of the chainsaw.  This happens when the nose of the chainsaw hints and objects and the chain snags.  Because of the way diamond chains both grind and saw, kickback proves to be a non-issue, making them much safer to operate than a chainsaw with a standard chain.

Polishing Pads

Another great diamond tool for any contractor’s toolbox is the diamond polishing pad.  This tool also works on multiple mediums to polish out scratches and refine marble, granite or concrete into a smooth and refined finish.  These pads, much like any other tool, come in a variety of sizes and grit to help you achieve that desirable smooth surface.  The sizing of the pad is equally as important as the grit.  The pads need to remain flat as they are being used in order to provide equal polishing to the pull surface.  Pads that are too large for a space are not able to remain flat and will cause uneven cuts in the surface you are working so hard to smooth.  Polishing pads also come in wet and dry varieties.  Wet pads are useful as the water reduces friction, thereby reducing heat, which helps with the longevity of the pad.  Wet pads typically provide a better finish as well.  However, they are messy.  Jobs that must be completed under strict time constraints may benefit from a dry pad as the cleanup is less time consuming.  U.S. Saws has a wide variety of diamond polishing pads to help with any granite, marble or concrete job.

Dust Shrouds:  The Diamond Tool’s Cleaner

Concrete cutting, sawing, grinding and polishing, while working to create a perfect structure, is a dirty, and hazardous job.  The dust caused by grinding materials like concrete has been known to make construction workers very sick.  The tiny silica particulates that are released may be inhaled and cause infections in the lungs.  these particulates have also been known to cause cancer.  it is vital to construction workers health that they use protection to keep the dust out of their lungs.  One such way to reduce the amount of dust released into the air is through a dust shroud.

The dust shroud was invented in 1989 by Bill Glynn and Warren Duncan as a way to remove hazardous dust that was created during the grinding process of concrete.  the initial prototype was created by Glenn using his son’s basketball, which she would she cut in half.  A hole is inserted on top to fit the grinder, and a vacuum was attached to suck away the dust.  Modern grinders are essentially the same but with big enhancements.  for instance, The US SAWS 5-inch Pro Dust Shroud is equipped with polyurethane construction and aluminum mounting which aids in protecting the grinder from excessive heat.  one obstacle with using a the shroud is being able to get close to a wall with your grinder.  This model is equipped with a convertible front edge that can go up or down to allow the user to get as close to the wall as possible.  U.S. Saws has been manufacturing dust shrouds since 1993, only four years after the initial prototype was created.  They remain a leader in the dust shroud industry due to their use of premium materials in their products and their wide variety of dust shroud offerings for all ranges of handheld and stand up grinders.

Contact U.S. Saws today to speak with a professional about which diamond tools every contractor needs in their toolbox.

Choosing the Right Diamond Blade

Diamonds are one of the hardest substances on earth, and while they can be buffed and polished into brilliant gems that adorn the crowns of royalty and the necks of celebrities, they are also a very handy medium for tools.  Scoring a 10 for hardness on the Moh’s scale, diamonds are renowned for their beauty and durability, and diamond blades are no different.  While not made of the stunning gemstone found on the fingers of the wealthy, a diamond blade will certainly evoke that same sense of awe in the eyes of the construction worker when viewed in action. Diamond blades are efficient and cut with precision.  Two essential characteristics for the measure twice / cut once crowd.  But how do you know which diamond blade is the right blade for your project?

What Is a Diamond Blade?

Diamond saw blades are created from synthetic diamonds.  These synthetic diamonds are broken into small pieces and attached as a grit to the saw blade.  They work with tools to provide a superior grinding action to coincide with the cutting action of the saw blade in order to work quickly and efficiently through abrasive material like concrete.  It is important to know that one size does not fit all when it comes to using diamond blades.  Knowing the medium through which the blade will be cutting, the depth of the cut required, and the location of the project are crucial details that help determine which blade is right for your project.

Understanding The Medium and Its Hardness

Diamond blades are efficient devices for cutting through a wide variety of mediums.  Contractors commonly utilize these blades with a wide variety of saws, grinders, and core drillers, each requiring their own specific type of diamond blade based on the medium through which they intend to cut.  Mediums ranking high on the Moh’s Scale require a slower shaft speed from the tool than mediums ranking lower on the scale, like concrete.  Further, the medium decides the size and spacing of the teeth on the blade.

Concrete is a great example of a medium that benefits from the use of diamond blades due to its softer medium and highly abrasive nature. Because of this abrasive nature, cutting concrete is best used with diamond blades that require a faster shaft speed.  When installing concrete, the cutting of control joints is critical in order to take control of concrete’s natural, and often times frustrating, habit of cracking.  To cut control joints, the most efficient option is to utilize a walk behind saw with a diamond blade.  This blade  Early entry saws are another standard saw used during the installation process of concrete that highly benefits from the addition of a diamond saw blade.  Handheld cut off saws may be used create decorative designs in freshly cured concrete.  again, since this is concrete, diamond saw blades are handy due to their ability to make easy work of concrete yet in a precise manner.  Diamond saw blades are not only necessary for concrete flooring work, but also for use with wall saws.  Because these saws are cutting concrete, the teeth on the saw blade should have wide slots, like the U.S. Saws Supreme Concrete Blade.

When working with glass or glazed tile, it is important to utilize a diamond blade that will provide a smooth cutting action.  Therefore, a blade with closely spaced segments is ideal in this situation.

Blade Size and Mesh

Another factor instrumental in ensuring your project is completed properly with a diamond blade it is ensuring you have the right size blade with the proper mesh to create those precision cuts.  The mesh of a diamond blade determines the coarseness of the blade. A coarse mesh size of 20 to 60 is what would be used for concrete or masonry.  Medium mesh size it’s ideal for glass and porcelain, while a fine mesh size is optimum for grinding and polishing.

The size of the blade is dependent on the job you’re trying to complete.  for decorative work on concrete, a smaller blade makes the most sense.  Should the job requires the cutting of control joints with a walk behind saw, then a larger blade will make faster work of the concrete.  It is important for the longevity of the blade to ensure that you are using the right size blade for your project.

Wet Blades vs. Dry Blades

When shopping for your perfect diamond blade, you will see options for wet blades and dry blades.  In order to choose the proper what or dry blade, it is vital to understand not only the medium with which you are working but also the location of that medium.  Dust is a dangerous factor when cutting concrete and other mediums.  one way to reduce the amount of dust emitted during the cutting process is by wet cutting.  Wet saw blades are efficient at reducing friction that may occur during the cutting process.  By reducing friction, the longevity of your blade will increase and ensure precision cutting for a longer period of time. Wet cutting is perfect for outdoor spaces as the blade requires constant application of water as the saw does its job.

Dry cutting is optimal for indoor spaces as it makes less of a mess with the water.  However, while there is less water mass, dry cutting does increase the amount of dust released into the air.  Therefore, it is imperative that safety measures are taken to prevent the inhalation of the silica dust created by dry cutting.  It is recommended that dry cutting be used for shallow cuts as it requires airflow to reduce heat, as opposed to wet cuts which use water to reduce heat.

Also, keep in mind that dry cutting diamond blades may also be used wet.  However, wet cutting specific diamond blades may never be used dry, as they are prone to overheating which may affect the outcome of your final product and damage a beautiful blade.

U.S. Saws is an innovator in the tool industry.  Diamond blades are versatile saw blades that will take your project to the next level.  As there are many factors to consider in choosing the proper blade for your project, engaging with a company to help guide you to the right blade will ensure your project is completed promptly in the right manner.   Contact U.S. Saws today to find the Diamond blade to meet your specific needs.

 

A Guide to Concrete Cutting

From residential and industrial premises to underground municipal utility structures, concrete has proven time and time again to be a highly versatile medium.  Concrete flooring, when prepared properly, can be polished to a sheen that is the focal point of a multi-million dollar penthouse.  It can also be the wise choice for a cost-conscious business owner opening a new warehouse or the local utility department’s storm water structures.  No matter the reason for the concrete, one thing is for certain, that concrete is going to need to be cut!

Installing Concrete

Concrete workers need to be cut for multiple reasons, including during the installation process, during the removal process, during the modification of existing concrete structures, and during repairs to municipal utility structures.  Installing concrete is a lengthy process that requires the cutting of control joints into the concrete in order to control the cracking that occurs as the concrete dries.  This is a natural process that is controlled by including forced cracks as part of the premises design instead of random uncontrollable cracks.  The joints are installed using an early entry saw.  These saws are typically used to cut control joints within one to two hours of concrete finishing, allowing those joints to be cut early without fear of uncontrolled cracks.

Removing Concrete

Many times, construction workers must remove existing concrete structures in order to alter the premises.  Concrete slabs are thick and difficult to remove. One efficient way to get the removal process rolling is with a circular saw.  Circular saws are able to cut into the concrete to a depth of about three inches.  These cuts simplify the process for sledgehammers to break up the remaining concrete and finish the removal process.

Modifying Current Concrete Structures

As versatile and long lasting as concrete may be, it still requires maintenance and during renovation, modification.  Modification of concrete flooring typically requires undergoing the installation process again, which requires the use of an early entry saw again.  It is important to note that at this juncture, another saw, albeit non-concrete cutting, is a requirement.  This is the joint clean out saw.  Before new control joints can be created, the old ones need to be removed, which includes the removal of the epoxies used to fill those control joints.

Repairing and Maintaining Municipal Utility Structures

Underground utility workers understand just how important it is to have concrete cutting tools at their disposal.  Known for having to work in awkward locations, many times under duress, utility workers commonly utilize concrete cutting tools like chainsaws to open gaps in concrete structures in order to maintain or perform repairs to existing structures.  These structures are intentionally inconveniently constructed to deter non-utility workers from disturbing local water or sewage lines.  These underground pipes need to be preserved from mainstream access.  In doing so, manufacturers have developed tools to aid municipal workers, especially underground utility workers, to gain access to these difficult areas, including gas powered chainsaws for areas lacking electrical outlets and hand saws for those tight space jobs which may even be air-powered to protect the health of the utility worker.

Tips for Staying Safe While Cutting Concrete

Protecting the health of construction workers is crucial.  Concrete cutting emits silica dust into the air of the surrounding workspace.  This silica dust is toxic and has been proven to cause multiple health hazards to concrete workers.  It is imperative that systems are put in place to remove the concrete cutting silica byproduct before it can be inhaled.  The first precaution that can be taken is wet cutting the concrete as opposed to dry cutting.  This is the easiest way to reduce the dust.  A second way to protect workers from silica dust is through protective face coverings.  These filter out the dust before it can reach the worker’s nasal passages.  A third way to reduce silica dust during the concrete cutting process is through dust shrouds or dust collection systems that eliminate dust from the air immediately.

U.S. Saws is an innovator in the concrete tool industry.  As concrete’s versatility gains popularity and its use becomes more prevalent in all aspects of society, U.S. Saws remains on the cutting edge of tool manufacturing for cutting concrete.  Contact U.S. Saws today to find the concrete cutter to meet your specific needs.

Easy Use with One Man Polymer Pump

Surface prep is long, arduous, dirty work.  Contractors are always looking for ways to complete the job more efficiently.  One way to save money on labor is through the investment in innovative tools that simplify the work.  One such tool is the one man polymer pump.  If you’re in the construction business and need to complete surface prep jobs efficiently, then this is the tool for you.

Polymer Pumps and Surface Prep

Concrete flooring is a versatile flooring option that can be as utilitarian as a sturdy warehouse or a glossy painted floor in a swanky high-rise condo.  While the materials may be fairly inexpensive (as far as high-end flooring goes), prepping concrete floors is a long process with several precise steps required to create that perfect finish.

Concrete cracks.  It’s a fact of life. This is due to temperature changes in the concrete which causes shrinkage.  It’s versatility, however, has led contactors to develop ways to make those cracks work for them.  As a concrete slab is laid, control joints need to be created in precise measurements to allow the cracks to form in predetermined areas.  The control joints require a filler to provide a seamless surface for finishing.

The control joint filler needs to be strong, yet flexible.  The flexibility is needed in order to move with the concrete as it undergoes its natural changes.  This helps reduce any further cracking in the slab as well as the appearance of cracks in the final paint or epoxy finish. One of the optimal choices for control joint filler is polyurea.

Polyurea joint filler is fast acting.  Some polyurea fillers will set in twenty minutes, allowing contractors to start the next step in the finishing process:  sanding.  If epoxy is used for the filler, further construction will have to wait at least 8 hours for the epoxy to cure.  Polyurea is definitely the right choice for time sensitive projects.

In order to apply polyurea or epoxy, you need a pump to apply the materials in a fast and precise manner.  The pumps are two tank systems that dispense the polyurea or epoxy with a hardener.  Equipped with a dispensing rod that typically has on/off controls as well as speed controls, the polymer pump allows for precise placement of the polymer materials in the control joint without making a mess on your new concrete slab.  Pumps like U.S. Saws’ Dual Component Polymer Pump are two person systems.  One person works the dispensing wand, controlling the joint filling procedure, while the second person controls the movement of the pump and ensures there is enough material in both tanks to complete the job.

How Does the One Man Pump Help the Process?

The advent of the one man polymer pump has been a game changer.  Instead of paying two people to work one machine, due to its ease of use, the one man polymer pump makes control joint filling a one man job, freeing up the second person to work on a separate aspect of the construction job.   U.S. Saws is a proud innovator of the one man polymer pump.  This pump allows the user to control the dispenser with one hand and maneuver the pump with the other.  This is accomplished through the use of a T shaped handle, which allows left and right hand operation.  These pumps come with 6.5 gallon buckets that will hold full 5 gallon jugs of joint filler, allowing the user to have a reserve in case they run low.  The tanks are also semi-transparent, allowing the operator to stay on top of their material levels without needing input from another person.  They are also equipped with enough space to hold a generator or deep cycle battery, making it the ideal option for spaces lacking electricity.  Plus, there is no need to worry about the electrical cord getting in the way and causing a mess.

U.S. Saws is an innovator in the tool industry.  As concrete flooring gains popularity, U.S. Saws remains on the cutting edge of tool manufacturing for concrete surface prep.  Contact U.S. Saws today to discuss how a one man polymer pump will benefit your business.

Industrial Surface Prep in Zeconds!

Is there anything better than the glossy sheen of a freshly finished concrete floor, or perhaps the luxurious softness of brand new shag carpet on your bare feet? unfortunately, overtime, these wonderful features, much like that new car smell, deteriorate, eventually requiring replacement.  Surface prep is a labor-intensive project.  While significant time is spent discussing methods for surface prep finishing, we also need to explore the beginning side of preparing surfaces for remediation or refinishing.  The first step in starting this project is to ensure that all residue from the removed flooring or concrete has been properly and thoroughly removed and the floor is prepped for new sealants.  This includes the removal of any carpet glue left behind after the removal process and the sanding or removal of old epoxy coatings to ensure a solid bond.  Every contractor knows proper prep is crucial to creating a perfect final product.

Why Is It Important?

Preparation is key!  The purpose of refinishing the floor is to create a surface that is better and more appealing than the one being removed.  Industrial adhesives and sealers used by contractors for construction projects are made to be long lasting and resist deterioration.  Foregoing the proper removal process of these adhesives and sealers during the remediation and refinishing process will provide a substandard finished product.  When removing old carpet, for example, it is common for carpet glue to be left behind.  Removing this adhesive is important for the quality of the newly upgraded flooring has any leftover residue will cause issues with a newly applied sealant.  The sealant will not be able to penetrate the adhesive residue it will leave a portion of your new flooring exposed, allowing for more rapid deterioration.  For flooring that already has an epoxy coating, it is important to either fully remove or at least sand down the current epoxy finish in oreder for the new coating to adhere to the surface.

Grind Residue Quickly with Zecs!

While there are multiple products and methods but may be used to remove industrial adhesives and sealants, the goal of most contractors is to use the method that gets it done the fastest and provides the most reliable results.  That’s where Zec’s abrasive discs come in.  These discs work in conjunction with industrial grinders to take down any industrial adhesive or sealant standing in the way of a newly finished floor.  Originating in Italy, the Zec discs are equipped with multiple layers of long-lasting silicon carbide grains.  These long lasting and easy to use discs are more efficient than diamond cup wheels because they resist residue buildup that typically occurs with diamond cup wheels.  These versatile discs make quick work of epoxies, urethane, rubber coatings, and even paint and rust.  They may be used on concrete, wood, and metal surfaces and may be used in wet or dry locations.  being able to use these disks in what locations or what surfaces drastically reduces any sanded particulates in the air, which is a great safety feature for all workers.

U.S. Saws is a proud supplier of Zec’s products.  They offer multipacks of discs in a variety of grit ratings to ensure contractors have the right tools for the job.  No residual adhesive or sealant will stand in the way of the perfectly finished floor when a Zec’s abrasive disc coupled with a U.S. Saws grinder is used for the job!

Don’t let residual debris stand in the way of perfect flooring. Contact U.S. SAWS today discuss all of the things you will do in your free time now that you’ve chosen Zec’s abrasive discs to take over your floor prep.

 

 

 

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