Your Guide To Concrete Floats

Concrete is a versatile and affordable material. Many homeowners have concrete features on their property. Making repairs to a concrete sidewalk, patio, or driveway can be simple if you opt to use ready-mix concrete products. These products are already mixed to the proper ratio, you just have to add water.

Finishing ready-mix concrete will require the use of a float. This specialized handheld tool is essential when it comes to creating a smooth and aesthetically pleasing concrete surface.

What is a float?

A float is essentially a flat piece of material with an attached handle. Floats can be made from many different materials, including magnesium, aluminum, or wood. Once you have poured your concrete into place, you will run the float over the top of the freshly-poured area to smooth out the surface of the concrete.

Floats play a critical role in providing a smooth finish that will prepare concrete for decorative stamping and overlays.

What exactly does floating do?

Floating your poured concrete will not only improve the aesthetic beauty of the slab by smoothing out any imperfections, it will also help improve the structural stability of the concrete once it has been cured.

As you run the float over the concrete's surface to level off peaks and fill voids, you are also compacting the aggregate material within the concrete mix. This compaction process helps add to the durability of the concrete once it has been completely cured. Your slab will be less likely to crumble or crack if it has been properly floated.

Which type of float is best?

Since concrete floats come in a variety of styles, it's important that you use the float best suited for the specific type of concrete application you intend to complete.

Concrete that is poured outside can become aerated during spreading. The high air content makes the concrete more sticky than it would normally be, which can pose a problem when it comes to successfully floating the concrete slab. Use a float that is made from magnesium, since these floats won't stick to your concrete.

If you are pouring concrete indoors, then aeration won't be a problem. A concrete float made out of laminated wood will have the added weight and maneuverability needed to give you the smoothest possible finish. Since indoor concrete slabs are highly visible, being able to achieve maximum smoothness is essential. Using the right float for your concrete job will boost the beauty and integrity of the finished slab.

To learn more, reach out to a business like P & L Concrete Products Inc.