What is the difference between “Honed Concrete” and “Polished Concrete”?

Mike AkermanUncategorized

In the process of finding the right information about Polished Concrete, some people may get lost in an attempt to understand the variety of definitions that are often used. Unfortunately, at times the terms are misused in the subject of what is generally known as “polished concrete floors”. Over the last 23 years we have grown to understand this confusion and endeavoured to simplify these concepts so that they may be accessible and understandable even to a layperson. So, let us have a look first at the difference between these two.

To put it as simple as possible and avoiding much controversy let’s begin by saying that Honed Concrete is an outdoor type of floor and Polished Concrete is an indoor floor. Because of the difference in the treatment they look and feel different. Honed Concrete looks matt and has a grittier surface, making it suitable for outdoor spaces such as driveways, pathways, and alfresco areas. “Polished Concrete Floors” have a smoother surface and it is only suitable for indoor areas. The reason for being limited to indoor spaces is because Polished Concrete is too slippery in wet weather conditions. The other reason is that for a polished finish to maintain its look, it would require continual maintenance and cleaning in an outdoor setting. On some websites and social media business accounts, it is not uncommon to see photos of glossy outdoor polished concrete floors, some of which are a bit misleading as some water has been left floating on the surface. Outdoor polished concrete floors are dangerous as well as unpractical unless the floor area is mostly covered by a roof, and not affected by the weather. Going by this, we can safely then say that the term “outdoor polished concrete” is not correct. It is in fact honed concrete.

However, when indoors, polished concrete is very safe as well as being greatly practical. Because polished concrete floors are so smooth and seamless, they are extremely easy to clean and they provide high hygiene. Also, having higher light reflectance, whether satin or gloss, they provide a spacious ambiance that is often desired in an indoor setting. On the other hand, it isn’t dangerous to have a honed concrete surface indoor, however, although it may look good in some large retail stores or semi-open public areas, it doesn’t suit most typical Australian homes. 

Now, indoor, where the concrete is most definitely polished and not honed, one must not confuse the issue of sheen. Although at this point in time technology hasn’t been able to offer a glossy outdoor floor treatment that isn’t slippery, it is however now possible by floor systems such as UrbanFloor, to choose a satin as well as a gloss finish to your indoor polished concrete floor.

Having said all this, communication is still greater than definition correctness. It’s perfectly ok to call an outdoor honed concrete floor “outdoor polished concrete” as long as one knows what he or she wants. On this website, all outdoor options are described as UrbanFoor Outdoor Hybrid.

Contact the Polished Concrete Specialists in Perth to find out more. Call today on 08 9359 2950.

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