Monday, 31 August 2015

How to Choose Paints for Internal Wall Surfaces

Interior walls look best when smooth, even and clean. Acrylic Emulsion paints, also known as Latex Paints are the best choice for interior painting as they give a smooth, even and tough, cleanable finish. Interior paints are available in a variety of finishes ranging from matt to silky to glossy and metallic. With today's technology and polymers the possibilities for paint is endless. Techniques for creating textured, faux and designer finishes are fast gaining popularity. These techniques are possible due to innovation in the use of polymers in paint. It is the new application of thought in the use of polymers as paints which brought about this explosion of variety. With so much variety, a consideration of budget, finish, paint application and purpose of use is essential.

Interior painting as such, lets be honest, is a messy affair. Shifting furniture, covering floors, removing light and electric fixtures, making sure the kids don't mess with the paint, hope the painters are not part time thieves  etc. Not to forget the smell of paint and discomfort of your routine being disrupted. 

Another prohibitive factor now a days is the cost of labour. With daily wages for painters going above Rs.600.00 and in some cases of specialized jobs, it can be in the range of Rs. 1000.00 to 1500.00. As a general rule, the cost of labour in a project is far higher than the cost of material used. The fact is painting cannot be repeated very often.

In such a situation, it becomes imperative to apply paint which gives a long life, is easily cleanable and gives a rich finish.

The quality and finish of the paint depend mainly on the binder polymer and the fillers used. A larger percentage of a high quality binder in the paint mixture will give a much smoother finish and a more impervious film. Lower percentages of binder and low quality fillers will result in a rough finish, lower area coverage/spread, a more porous finish and lower washability. It also makes the paint cheaper by volume but not necessarily cheaper per square foot . The use of fillers also increases the chance of dust pick-up. Hence, cheaper paints not only get dirty sooner but are also not resistant to the abrasion of washing.

Another factor to consider before buying paint of a particular sheen level is the level of the plastered surface and the skill of the workman. Unskilled or partly skilled manual labour find it very hard to level highly uneven surfaces. The lack of use of techniques such as automated sanders is also wide spread. Owing to this, a high sheen paint is not recommended to be applied by unskilled labour on uneven surfaces, as the surface irregularities will stand out under light. A matt finish will dull the light and cover the irregularities.

A number of products in today's Indian market have been tailored to fit every finish and budget requirement. Products such as Asian Paints Tractor Emulsion are at the lower end of the spectrum while other products such as Asian Paints Royale and Dulux Velvet Touch are at the higher end of the spectrum.Value for money products such as Asian Paints Apcolite Premium Emulsion do the bulk of the decoration in the mid price range.

Luxury and super-engineered products such as Asian Paints Royale Aspira are quickly catching up in the Ultra Luxury Segment, giving the buyer much more than expected.

The paint industry has never been this vibrant with new entrants almost every month spoiling the customer for choice! Happy painting !!!

Friday, 28 August 2015

How to Polish, Harden and Seal Marble Flooring with Materials Available in the Indian Market

Marble is one of the most exotic and luxurious stones available for interior and exterior decor. Its translucence has mesmerized generations and inspired legends. Cool to touch and exudes royalty. The almighty is often represented in marble with exquisite carving. One of the most sought after stones today is marble.

The very properties which makes marble so desirable are also its short falls. Due to its soft and porous nature it is very fragile and prone to stains. To make marble suitable for the purpose of flooring, it is essential to harden and seal it.

Marble Hardner and Crystallizer
Materials Required to Polish, Harden and Seal Pores in newly laid Marble :
. Marble Polishing Stones
. Polishing Machine / Hand Machine
. Floor Cleaner
. Marble Crystallizer
. Stone Sealer
. Liquid Wax
. Buffing Pads
. Polisher
. Rags
. Masking tapes and sheets.
. Protective equipment such as Gloves, Boots and Glasses.
. Wiper with handle.
Polishing Stones for Polishing Machine

Application for newly laid Marble :
1. Cover and mask furniture, walls, curtains, adjoining wooden flooring etc.
2. Wear protective equipment.
3. Grind the surface with stones 0M, 1M and 2M progressively, using water as lubricant on the surface, with either a hand machine or a polisher machine.
4. Dilute a neutral pH Floor Cleaner with water and clean the surface of the dirt generated. A neutral pH is very essential for a calcium based
Polishing Machine
stone such as marble.
5. Remove excess water using a wiper and dry the floor completely with rags.
6. Pour the marble crystallizer on to the surface and spread evenly with a wiper.
7. Wait for the crystallizer to be completely absorbed into the stone.
8. Repeat the above 2 steps 5 to 6 times for best results.
9. Stop applying the crystallizer when the stone no longer absorbs the material.
10. Wait for at least 24 hours before the next steps.
11. Grind the surface with stones 2L, 3 and 4 progressively, using water as lubricant on the surface, with either a hand machine or a polisher machine.
12. Apply additional 2-3 coats of the crystallizer.
13. Wait for at least 24 hours before the next steps.
14. Grind the stone with abrasive 5 for a smoother finish.
15. Finish the process using 5X abrasive for the final finish.
Hand Machine

This completes the hardening process for the marble. Polishing and leveling is also partly achieved in the above process. The process for sealing and polishing the stone further is as below :
16. Mark out a 3m x 3m grid pattern onto the surface of the stone to ensure even application. Treat marked areas one after another. 
17. Soak a rag with a stone sealer and apply onto the surface of the stone. Ensure that you cover the marked grid areas.
18. After about 10 minutes, remove the excess/in-absorbed sealer using a polisher fitted with a straight or twisted wool pad.
19. Wait for about 24 hours for the sealer to completely cure.
20. Pour the liquid wax onto the surface and spread evenly using a wiper on to the marked areas.
21. Using a polisher, buff the surface to get a high gloss finish.
Polishing Stone for Hand Machine

Application for already polished or stones that have to be refinished :
. Cover and mask furniture, walls, curtains, adjoining wooden flooring etc.
. Wear protective equipment.
. Clean the surface thoroughly using a neutral pH cleaner. Remove excess water using a wiper and wipe dry with rags.
. Grind the surface using stone 4 to make the stone absorbent.
. Apply 2-3 coats of crystallizer using a wiper.
Neutral pH Stone Cleaner
. Wait for at least 24 hours before the next steps.
. The rest of the process remains the same as that for newly laid stones i.e. steps 14 to 21 have to be followed, the same as above.

Sparkling and fresh floors!

. Neutral floor cleaners in diluted form can be used regularly to clean the finished floors.
. For sealed and polished floors, the maintenance is very low. Sealing and polishing can be repeated when desired, usually in an interval of 2-3 years.

Polisher and Wool Pad

Liquid Wax Polish
Stone Sealer