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How Do I Wax a Concrete Floor?

Laurie Brenner

Concrete floors are a top choice for many homeowners instead of other expensive flooring alternatives, especially in homes already built on concrete slabs. You can acid-stain concrete, add a colorant to the mix during pouring, or paint over its surface and add a sealer to protect the concrete.

High-sheen waxed concrete floors cost less than conventional flooring.

But regardless of its sealant, to protect your concrete floor from stains and abrasions from normal foot traffic, add wax as a sacrificial surface coating for high-traffic areas.

Tip

If you have a large area to wax, have someone else spray the wax onto the floor via a pump sprayer while you rub the wax into the floor with the microfiber mop. For home use, you may only need to apply wax once or twice a year, depending upon traffic. As an alternative to wax, you can add a high-gloss resin-based epoxy or polyurethane coating for less maintenance in high-traffic areas.

Warning

Don't leave containers with wax sitting on the floor, as they often leave and create rings on the waxed floor that mimic the container's bottom.

Don't use a cotton fiber floor mop as it can leave lint and fibers embedded in the wax.

  1. Apply a concrete sealant to the floor before waxing it. Let it dry thoroughly, at least 12 hours before applying the wax coat, although an acrylic sealant should be dry to the touch after 30 to 60 minutes.

  2. Precondition the microfiber floor mop before applying wax to the floor. Add wax to a spray bottle and spray it directly onto the mop head to moisten it. A microfiber mop does not leave behind lint or cloth debris in the wax. It applies the wax in an almost glass-like state, offering the best results.

  3. Work in a pattern across the floor by starting in one corner and working your way to the door or room's exit. Smooth the wax onto the floor using the microfiber mop in a nondirectional way, such as swooping it in loops or figure 8s. Avoid applying it in repeated rows, as doing so could lead to buildup of mop lines on the concrete's surface.

  4. Let the wax product dry thoroughly before applying additional coats, which is dependent on humidity, air temperature and product recommendations, generally 1 to 2 hours. Apply more than one coat for high-traffic areas. For example, industrial or commercial use generally requires six coats of wax for added protection.

  5. Buff the floor with a floor buffer or polishing machine if you used a buff-in wax that requires buffing to burnish it. Matte buff-in products don't provide as high a sheen on the floor, but it works the wax more into the floor, providing better protection.

The Drip Cap

  • Concrete floors are a top choice for many homeowners instead of other expensive flooring alternatives, especially in homes already built on concrete slabs.
  • But regardless of its sealant, to protect your concrete floor from stains and abrasions from normal foot traffic, add wax as a sacrificial surface coating for high-traffic areas.
  • Let it dry thoroughly, at least 12 hours before applying the wax coat, although an acrylic sealant should be dry to the touch after 30 to 60 minutes.
  • Precondition the microfiber floor mop before applying wax to the floor.