Infusion® Reactive Concrete Stains
What is an Acid Stain?
Acid Stain is not paint or a sealer. Acid Stain colors the concrete by creating a chemical reaction. A solution with acid, inorganic salts and water reacts with minerals that are already present in the concrete. This reaction creates color.
Can I use Acid Stain anywhere I want?
Acid Stain is not for every concrete floor. The concrete MUST be bare. There can be no sealers, curing compounds, bond breakers, paints, etc. on the surface. The surface must be clean and free of grease or any other contamination that would prevent the reaction from occurring.
Can Acid Stain be used on interior and exterior surfaces?
Yes. Some Acid Stain colors may be more sensitive to moisture and can not be used on the exterior. Verify the color being used is not moisture sensitive (see color chart for interior only colors).
Will the same color look the same on different jobs?
Even when the same color is used on different jobs, a different appearance will result. The color will be different for many reasons such as the different pour of the concrete, the texture of the concrete, the cure time and overall condition of the floor.
Can I intermix colors to create my own color?
Yes! Intermixing colors is common in the Acid Stain industry, this allows you to expand the color possibilities. Note: Always keep track of the “recipe” you have created just in case it needs to be recreated for repairs.
What is the most important step in my Acid Stain job?
Surface preparation is the most important step. If the surface is not thoroughly clean and free of all sealers,
Is it recommended to acid etch prior to acid staining?
No, acid etching will take away from the reaction of the acid stain which could result in less color penetration. There is vast difference between acid etching and staining.
Will acid stain react with the surface of the concrete?
In most cases the reactive ingredient in the concrete is, Hydrated Calcium (lime) which is not displaced evenly when the concrete is finished. In result, the acid reaction will naturally leave areas exposed, bare concrete which may look “bald”. The amount of “balding” will depend greatly on how the concrete is finished and the concentration of the acid stain mixture.
How deep does the acid stain react through the concrete surface?
Concrete thickness can vary from ¼” to over 3′. However, depending on the finish (how it was troweled) and porosity of the concrete surface, the penetration of the acid reaction may be only 1/16″ – 3/16″. In time if the surface is not maintained, the floor finish, sealer and color can be worn off exposing bare concrete areas. The use of the Industrial Floor Finish will not only bring up the sheen level and supply a buffable fresh looking surface, when maintained it will increase the overall life of the application.
How long should I allow the Acid Stain to sit on the surface before I remove the residue?
The Acid Stain should sit on the surface for at least 4 hours. You can let it sit longer. The longer you let it sit, the darker the color will be. It is common for the stain to sit overnight before the residue is removed.
I have applied the Acid Stain, removed the residue and I want the color to be darker, what can I do?
A second application of Acid Stain may be applied after the residue has been removed. This will provide a darker effect.
How do I dispose of the Infusion residue?
It all depends on your local municipality’s disposal requirements. It is corrosive, so you will have to research that prior to beginning installation. The county’s website should have the information you need.
Will a water-based sealer and a solvent-based sealer give the same appearance?
No. Solvent-Based sealers tend to make the colors beneath much bolder, darker and deeper. While the water-based sealers will not have that effect on the colors final appearance. *It is crucial to do a sample test area with the sealer to be sure the customer approves of the final color and appearance.
Do I always need to apply the Industrial Floor Finish after I apply a sealer?
The Industrial Floor Finish is designed for interior use only and should not be used on exterior jobs. On interior jobs, the Industrial Floor Finish will provide an ideal finish in high traffic areas such as schools, office buildings, shopping malls, hospitals, hotels and restaurants.
How do I keep my acid stained floor looking new?
Neutral – based cleaners are perfect for daily care on acid stained floors (regardless of the topcoat). DO NOT use ammonia – based cleaners on a daily basis, they will strip the sealer and color. For daily maintenance use a solution of 4-8 ounces of cleaner per gallon of water then apply with a damp mop. For heavily soiled areas a solution of up to 16 ounces per gallon of water is acceptable. *However, annual stripping of H&C Industrial Floor Finish should be done using an ammoniated cleaner. After the old finish is removed apply 2-3 coats of the floor finish. (Industrial Floor Finish can only be used on interior surfaces- but will be the best choice to keep interior floors looking fresh!)
Acetone Dye Stains
Can Acetone Dye Stain be applied outside?
No – The UV stabilization of each color is different ranging from months to years therefore dye is for interior use only.
Why does Acetone Dye Stain work better on smoother concrete surfaces in contrast to acid or water based stains?
A: The acid stain process is a chemical reaction that reacts with concrete. If the surface of the concrete is to slick and the pours are closed sometimes the acid stain reaction is weakened. B: Dyes are nano pigments and non reactive therefore on a smoother surface the dye will have no problem penetrating even smooth concrete surfaces. This is the reason Dye and not water-based stains are used in polished concrete. The dye will penetrate better than water-based stains. C: Water-based stains are using pigments that are larger than the dye pigments to achieve color. (Surface color)
Is Acid etching required before application of Acetone Dye Stain?
Not always, however some steel troweled surfaces will require acid etching to open the pores of the concrete. It is important to always perform a water test. If the surface does not rapidly absorb the water, than etching is required.
When diluting Acetone Dye Stain, what are the differences in using acetone vs. alcohol?
The dry time for alcohol is longer then acetone, but not by much. Using alcohol will result in more variation in color in contrast to using acetone.
Can you over dilute Acetone Dye Stain, i.e. 2 gallons of Acetone with 1 bottle of dye stain?
No, but the more the dye is diluted the lighter and more transparent the color will turn out.
Can you under dilute Acetone Dye Stain, i.e. 1 gallon of Acetone with 2 bottles of dye stain?
Yes, if the dye is under diluted some of the dye may not dissolve when mixing with acetone. The dye should be used as suggested for best results.
Will any pump-up sprayer work when applying Acetone Dye Stain?
No – The best sprayers to use for the dye application have to do two things.
- The Sprayer needs to be designed for acetone and alcohol.
- The sprayer needs to be able to achieve proper atomization. (Fine Mist Spray)
Examples – Pump sprayer that is designed for this application, or an HVPL sprayer, or an airless sprayer.
Does Acetone Dye Stain have to be sealed? If so, what types of sealers are compatible with Acetone Dye Stain?
Yes dyed floors should be sealed. You can use Acrylics, Urethanes, Epoxies, and Lithium Based Densifiers. Most coatings will go over dyes, but always do a sample area to check compatibility.
Can Acetone Dye Stain be used with Concrete Overlays?
Yes, this is very common. Always remember to have the contractor do a test to insure compatibility.
Can Acetone Dye Stain colors be intermixed?
How long do I have to wait to seal after application of Acetone Dye Stain?
Floor must be completely dry from the residue removal process before application of any sealer. It should typically be applied 24 hours after the dye stain residue is removed. However, dry time can vary, so do a test area to insure floor is ready for sealer.
Can Acetone Dye Stain be used together with acid stains or water-based stains?
Yes – Complete the acid stain process then proceed with the dye or water-based stain application before a sealer is applied.
INFUSION® Semi-Transparent Decorative Stains
Does INFUSION® Semi-Transparent Stain react with the concrete slab like acid stain?
No, Semi-Transparent Stain is a water-based penetrating micronized pigment.
Can Semi-Transparent Stain be applied outside?
Yes, all 16 colors are UV stable and should have a sealer applied.
Does Semi-Transparent Stain require a special pump up sprayer for application?
No, most pump-up sprayers are sufficient, Semi-Transparent Stain can also be applied with an Airless Sprayer or HVLP Sprayer.
Can two colors of Semi-Transparent Stain be mixed together creating a custom color?
Yes, multiple color of Semi-Transparent Stain can be combined to create custom blends.
What is the maximum dilution ratio for Semi-Transparent Stain?
Dilution of Semi-Transparent Stain doesn’t compromise the product, the more Semi-Transparent Stain is diluted lessens the color effect. We recommend the maximum dilution rate of 4:1.
Can I use Semi-Transparent Stain together with acid stains and acetone dye stains?
Yes, Semi-Transparent Stain can be used with Acid Stains & Acetone Dye Stains as long as concrete pores are sufficiently opened.
What are the benefits of using a water-based Semi-Transparent Stain over the traditional acid stain?
User-friendly, reduces installation time, doesn’t change chemical makeup of concrete (PH Levels); clean up with just soap and water.
Is it recommended to acid etch prior to application of Semi-Transparent Stain?
Concrete must be cured, cleaned, & profiled prior to Semi-Transparent Stain being applied. Mild acid wash might be necessary to achieve the profiled concrete. Surface should have the feel of 120 grit sandpaper.
Is there a residue that has to be removed after the Semi-Transparent Stain is dry?
No, if surface is flooded with Semi-Transparent Stain then it could show a residue that doesn’t have to be removed.
How long after application of Semi-Transparent Stain do I have to wait to seal?
When it is apparent that Semi-Transparent Stain is completely dry it is ready for a seal coat. This is typically 4-6 hours.
Does Semi-Transparent Stain have to be sealed? If so, what types of sealers are compatible with Semi-Transparent Stain?
Yes, Semi-Transparent Stain has to be sealed. There are no limitations to the compatible sealers that can be applied. Always perform a test area before entire application.
How do I maintain/clean my Semi-Transparent Stained floor?
Depends on what seal coating is used. Your sealer is your wear surface that takes all the abuse. Follow sealer instructions for maintenance.