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101 – Introduction: Polymer Modified Cementitious Overlays

The decorative concrete overlays and custom seamless flooring industry originates from the paint manufacturing and basic concrete restoration trades. Over forty years ago, paint resins (known as acrylic resin and/or vinyl resin) and cements were starting to be blended to create more durable solutions to basic concrete repair. It was found that with the addition of a basic paint resin, certain performance characteristics were mildly increased in repair cement mortars and so began the concrete overlay and resurfacing industry.

The Problem with Conventional Coatings & Overlay Products

Over the years, this industry has endured countless scrutiny and negative press from architects, specifiers, concrete contractors and homeowners due to the limitations caused by the of lack of long term product performance of polymer modified cement coatings and overlay materials. These limitations include; un-tested & un-compatible materials, adverse weather condition failure from freeze/thaw cycles, high humidity & dampness and UV degradation. Lack of long term product performance and adverse weather conditions forced installation failures, delays and also cause unforeseen expenditures downtime and application costs. This is all a result of poor product or chemical composition knowledge. Companies see a market niche or opportunity and immediately release a product line to the architectural concrete overlay and custom seamless flooring industry before the material can be properly tested or many times not even being of a quality composition.

Developing a Solution

Elite Crete Systems was introduced to the decorative concrete overlay and custom seamless flooring industry when they were approached to blend and produce a pre-existing concrete resurfacing product line for another company. With Their background inspecialty polymer modified cement formulations and paint type products they immediately presented their customer with several alternative product blends which they felt would serve as improved replacements to their existing product line. It turned out the replacements were a success and so began the introduction of their products into a new industry.y.

The solution was relatively simple. Since most of the resins (modifiers) being used the industry at the time and still to date consisted of either acrylic based modifiers or vinyl based polymers, the disadvantages were immediately known. Acrylic based cements lacked the adhesion, water resistance and flexibility properties needed to perform long term, and vinyl based cements lacked the hardness, water resistance and abrasion resistance properties needs to perform long term. Their solution was to utilize performance characteristics of several different resins and polymers to create a better modifier for cement. This is why their cement modifiers are referred to as “hybrid polymers”.

The Advantages

With the use of a proven hybrid polymer blend, the performance characteristics were a given. It wasn’t until more creative contractors got to use the products until they learned another key advantage… Versatility. Acrylic modified cements were primarily used for base coats and spray textures and lacked the workability and texturing capabilities to emboss effectively or broom finish. Vinyl cements always had to be used in extremely dry conditions which would not be subject to high traffic or water. The result is an architectural concrete overlay and custom seamless flooring system with the versatility to serve as a repair product or an aesthetic finish, as a broom finish or a splatter texture, as a troweled finish or a thin stamped overlay, our architectural concrete overlay and custom seamless flooring systems are leading the way.



When unsightly, old and damaged concrete is no longer acceptable the option for concrete resurfacing should be your top choice. Concrete floors over time will often develop cracks, show surface spalling, stain, and begin to deteriorate. Typically the structural concrete slab will be fine but its surface is in need of repair and concrete resurfacing.

Once it has been determined that something needs to be done about the old concrete, the fun begins! Concrete resurfacing systems open the door to wide range of design and decor options. There are purely functional concrete resurfacing products that will look and feel similar to standard grey concrete floor, but for those who want to take their concrete flooring to whole new level, decorative concrete systems should be considered.

Here are some common concrete resurfacing overlay systems with overviews of what the look and design can be expected from each:

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Broom Finish Concrete:  Designed to restore and protect damaged, pitted, flaking and
stained concrete back to the look of a new concrete surface. This application can even be “broom finished” if desired.

Splatter Texture- Splatter, Knock down, Sprayed texture concrete: Often found around pool decks and large outdoor patios and walkways. This functional concrete resurfacing system provides a textured, slip resistant finish that can be efficiently applied with a hopper spray gun. The final look is that similar to a splattered wall finish standard in many homes. The texture helps the surface stay cool for bare feet in the hot sun and creates a functional anti-slip surface for wet areas. This texture is most often installed on top of a skim or bond coat and can then be coated in any color similar to a painted surface top while providing a sealed, consistent floor finish.

Concrete Repair, Resurfacing and Regrading:

This is an application most concrete contractors would like to believe is possible, yet still have a high level of pessimism towards the success and long term durability of the application. The basis behind the application is to repair/restore/resurface pitted, flaked, deteriorated or poorly finished concrete that would otherwise need torn out and replaced. Normal applications are applied 1/32″ to 1/4″ thick with thicker applications being available if needed. Finished repair looks as if new concrete was poured, yet offer increased levels of performance including: resistance to chemicals, salt, petrochemicals, UV degradation, water resistance, freeze/thaw and more. Because of the inexpensive cost of these applications, it is becoming the standard for surface repair in place a replacement..

Decorative Concrete Resurfacing:

These applications are the traditional decorative resurfacing designs and textures. Splatter textures applied with an air powered dry wall type hopper gun or slate trowel down finishes create authentic looking slate textures and patterns onto the concrete substrate. Typical applications are commonly applied to commercial and residential pool decks, driveways, patios, public and private sidewalks and more giving the property added beauty, slip resistance and greatly increased durability.