Monday, January 21, 2013

Should I Acid Etch the Concrete before Staining it?

Ask a Pro
  Q. -  I have looked at other brands of concrete stains and most have an etching chemical that has to be applied first and depending on brand depends on the brand of etching chemical, if I buy this product do I need the etching stuff, and what brand if so???
Hello Blair,
  A. -  Concrete Camouflage stains are true concrete acid stains, which means they have the acid in them, and so you don't use any etching products during clean and prep or before applying the stain. Products that call themselves concrete stains, yet require the concrete to be acid etched and/or acid washed prior to application are disguised paints and should be avoided if at all possible. Some examples would be acrylic stains and semi transparent or solid color stains. But the one that really cracks me up is any product that pitches themselves as eco friendly or a safer alternative to acid stains, bragging that they have no acids in them. Then they tell you that in order to use their safer, better, eco friendly stain, that you need to acid etch the concrete first. Of course using a far stronger solution of acid than the diluted muriatic/hydrochloric acid (swimming pool acid) that is used in the actual acid stains. Not to mention a another step added to the process.