Concrete flooring is a rapidly growing trend for business owners and homeowners. When prepped properly, concrete can be an inexpensive solution for beautiful and durable flooring. However, much like any material, concrete flooring needs to be repaired and sometimes replaced. Prior to any repair work or replacement that concrete surface will need to be prepped for the project with the proper concrete saw and other handy items.
The five best tools for a concrete surface prep contractor’s tool box are:
- A concrete grinder;
- A joint clean out saw;
- A dual component polymer pump;
- A gas powered dust collector; and
- An early entry saw
Let’s take a look at the benefits of each of these tools.
The Most Innovative Concrete Grinder on the Market
Every concrete surface prep contractor needs a concrete grinder to remove all of the inconsistencies and flaws in a concrete surface and provide a smooth and usable floor. Even old concrete floors can be ground down and polished to a renewed perfection. Long over are those days of back breaking handheld concrete grinders. Modern technology has devised ways to create powerful grinders while also allowing the user to remain in an upright position. The TC-7 Stand-Up Edge Grinder, available through U.S.SAWS, is the most innovative concrete grinder on the market. This powerful machine will not only grind down high and uneven spots in the concrete but also functions as a polisher for concrete surfaces. The TC-7 gives the operator total control, allowing for the front, back, and side to side adjustments, an adjustable outrigger wheel for various head pressure, a durable aluminum chassis, and a U-shaped frame allowing the operator to remain in a standing position, all with a shock-absorbing grip.
Joint Clean Out Saw
When resurfacing concrete, a joint clean-out saw is a concrete saw must for any surface prep contractor. Concrete joints are widely used to control cracking in concrete slabs due to expansion and contraction of the concrete. The joints are placed in predetermined locations and are usually at a depth of ¼ of the thickness of the concrete slab. When it’s time to resurface the concrete, these joints need to be cleaned out in order to properly grind and polish the concrete. U.S.SAWS Mark-III Joint Clean-Out Saw is the tool for that job. This precision saw is designed to clean out the joints between the slabs, remove whatever filler was used, and make accurate cuts up to two inches deep. This concrete saw makes accurate cuts by allowing the operator to see the blade, even though 98% of the blade is covered for dust control purposes. You’re now able to see the blade but without a cloud of dust! This saw blade is also adjustable and has a depth lock to prevent overcutting.
Easy to Use and Inexpensive to Maintain Dual Component Polymer Pump
Now that you know the must-have tool for cleaning out a concrete joint, we need to find the best tool for applying the new concrete filler into the freshly carved joints. Dual component polymer pumps are the easiest tool for the job. The dual-component system allows you to mix and dispense the polymer filler into the joints through the use of one device. U.S.SAWS’ Dual Component Polymer Pump is an easy to use and economical option for surface prep contractors. This polymer pump comes standard with a 1:1 component ratio, but also has a 2:1 component ratio available. The aluminum mixing manifold is easy to clean. The Dual Component Polymer Pump has two 6.5 gallon semi-transparent tanks that allow the contractor to keep easy tabs on material levels. If dispensing is a concern, this model’s dispensing wand has variable speed control and start/stop control allowing precise fill for each joint. While this machine is not designed for single component polyurethates, it goes above and beyond for polyuria, polyaspartic and epoxy materials.
Gas Powered Dust Collector
Dust is inevitable with any concrete surface prep job. While many of the above-listed tools have unique ways to minimize dust and maximize the operator’s vision, dust is still a factor that contractors have to handle not only for cleanliness on the job site, but also for health purposes. Concrete dust is very fine and has the potential to make people sick if inhaled. A gas-powered dust collector can make short work of the residue left behind from your concrete saw and has the power to remove those fine particles of concrete dust. These dust collectors are not your run-of-the-mill home vacuum. These are heavy-duty industrial vacuums equipped with high-power gas engines to clear out any leftover residue. Gas-powered dust collectors are great for masonry and block saws as well as concrete. The Ultra Vac 1250 – Gas Dust Collector is a great option for anyone using a concrete saw. This vacuum system is constructed with all-steel tube framing and a polyethylene body that can take significant abuse. Powered by a Honda GX240 gas engine, it has a 12.5 gallon dust bin for those large projects and a 25 foot hose with a 3 inch diameter. The front also has front and rear handles for easy handling. Options for his dust collector include HEPA filters and Longopac bagging systems.
Early Entry Saw
An early entry saw is a fine concrete saw to have for creating contraction joints in fresh concrete. Early entry saws can cut into fresh concrete within 1 to 4 hours of finishing. Having a properly cut joint is crucial to the quality of the concrete slab. A poorly carved joint will not provide the proper plane needed to guide the stress crack. The SRX-2000 Early Entry Saw by U.S.SAWS is an essential concrete saw for a prep surfacer’s toolbox. This concrete saw allows for the sawing of crack control joints within one to two hours of concrete finishing. Four-inch wide polyurethane wheels allow the saw to move across the freshly finished concrete without marking the surface. Joint chipping and spalling are minimized via the skid plate. The blade guard on this early entry saw is equipped with a vacuum port that controls dust while dry cutting the concrete. The maximum cut depth for this saw is 1 and 5/8 inches and comes with an easy release depth control lever. The folding handlebar compacts this concrete saw down for easy storage.
Contact U.S.SAWS today to discuss your concrete surface prop tool options!