Concrete floors are one of the most inexpensive and low-maintenance flooring options. However, if there are any stains on it, you need to know how to remove it efficiently. There are many ways by which paint stains can be removed from concrete flooring.
Paint removal from a concrete surface is undoubtedly a challenging task, bit it’s easier if the stains are still fresh. You can clean the paint by soaking it in water for some time and then scrubbing it with harsh detergent and a hard-bristled brush. For dried stains, you need some special tools and techniques, as the paint has already entered into the porous surface of the concrete; it requires a lot of effort and time.
Use Paint Strippers
Paint strippers can be used on all paints, even the water-resistant ones. A variety of stripping agents can be found in the market.
Soy-based strippers are safe, non-toxic, and easy to use. They are found in the form of gel.
Apply the gel on the paint stain and allow it to settle for a while; it loosens the tough, dry paint to an extent. Then, take a thick plastic scraper and strip off the gel along with the paint from the concrete surface.
Chemical paint stripper gels generally scrape paint in only one application. More applications may be required for thicker paint stains. The best part is that you can reuse the same gel strip again and again on the stain. Once the maximum amount is out of the concrete, rub the spot with a nylon brush after pouring some scouring powder and water to scrub out the soft residues. Finally, rinse the area thoroughly with plain water.
Though paint strippers help scrape paint off concrete easily, be sure to avoid the toxic ones. They show quick action but are harmful for the eyes, skin and cause environmental pollution. If you wish to use them on some stubborn stains, take all possible precautionary measures. The area where it will be used, should have proper ventilation and any furnaces or boilers or pilot light kept in the region should be turned off.
Use Shot Blaster
Shot blasters, though costly, can be used to remove paint stains from concrete. The abrasive material forced out under high pressure on the affected spot of concrete surface helps in paint removal. It has a vacuum attachment which then cleans up the released beads, dusts and debris by suction.
Shot blasting equipment is a highly expensive machine and you can get it on rent from the local home improvement stores. Its working principle is quite similar to that of sandblaster. The only difference is that it throws out tiny metal beads instead of sand. The machine should be moved on the concrete carefully at such a pace that it does not strip off any concrete. Shot blasting often cause extensive damage to the surface of the concrete. Therefore, it should be used only in those cases where the stains are really bad. It is not recommended for concrete that are already cracked or chipped as its damaging effect can be so bad that you have to go for immediate concrete repair.
High Power Wash
Pressure washing helps remove paint from concrete; here, high power water pressure is used for cleaning up paint from concrete. It works well on almost all types of paints, except some strong ones like epoxy paint. However, this technique is applicable only for outdoor surfaces.
An effective method for removing paint stains from concrete is to use floor grinders with diamond wheels. It should be used only if you plan to have a topping of cement, because the grinder often leaves behind scrapes on the concrete.
If required, you can use more than one technique on the same concrete stain for effective results. While carrying out the task of removing paint, you must protect yourself with appropriate protective gear like glasses, respiratory mask and gloves.