Grinding & Polishing

Polished concrete is a popular flooring option that involves grinding concrete surfaces to achieve a smooth, matte - glossy finish. It is a durable and low-maintenance flooring solution that is commonly used in commercial and residential spaces.

A newly polished concrete floor in a modern interior with dynamic lighting.

What is Grinding & Polishing?

Concrete grinding and polishing is a specialized process that involves the use of heavy-duty machinery and diamond-impregnated discs to grind, hone, and polish concrete surfaces. This technique is used to transform rough, dull, or damaged concrete floors into smooth, glossy, and visually appealing surfaces. The process begins with coarse grinding to remove surface imperfections and prepare the concrete for further refinement. Finer grinding is then performed to achieve the desired level of smoothness and shine. Finally, a series of polishing steps are undertaken to enhance the concrete's appearance and durability. The result is a durable, low-maintenance flooring option that is both functional and aesthetically pleasing.

Inside view of reflective polished concrete floor.

Types of Grind

  • Full aggregate exposure, where the concrete is ground down to reveal the aggregate within the mix, creating a textured, terrazzo-like finish.
  • Partial aggregate exposure, where the grinding reveals some of the aggregate, providing a balanced look between the concrete and the exposed aggregate.
  • Salt and pepper finish, where only a minimal amount of grinding is done to remove surface blemishes, resulting in a subtle, lightly polished appearance.

Cream or natural polish in concrete polishing refers to a smooth, slightly glossy finish achieved by refining the surface with fine grit diamond abrasives. No grinding is done in this process

Slide to view different grind finishes
Level of Grind
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Polished concrete floor with natural grind finish and minimal aggregate exposure.
Lightly ground polished concrete floor with subtle aggregate visibility.
Medium grind polished concrete floor revealing moderate aggregate detail.
Heavily ground polished concrete floor with full aggregate exposure.

Types of Polish

A polished concrete floor can exhibit a range of sheen levels, from matte to high gloss, depending on the desired aesthetic and functional requirements. A matte finish provides a subtle, understated look that is smooth to the touch and has a low level of light reflectivity. In contrast, a high-gloss finish offers a reflective, mirror-like surface that enhances the brightness of the space and creates a more luxurious appearance. Between these extremes, various levels of sheen can be achieved, allowing for a customized finish that suits the specific design goals of the project.

Slide to view different polishing finishes
Level of Sheen
Semi Gloss
High Gloss
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Matte polished concrete flooring in a rustic indoor setting.
Satin finish on polished concrete floor in a bright interior.
Semi-gloss polished concrete floor in a modern hallway.
Glossy polished concrete floor in spacious commercial interior.
High-gloss finish on polished concrete floor reflecting sky and interior.


Frequently asked questions

Still got questions? Find quick answers to common questions about our polished concrete services.

How do I maintain polished concrete?

Maintaining polished concrete is relatively easy. Regular cleaning with a neutral pH cleaner and occasional resealing can help keep the surface looking its best.

How does the level of aggregate exposure affect the final appearance and durability of the polished concrete?
  • None (Cream Finish): A cream finish may be more susceptible to wear and staining, as the surface is smoother and less textured. It may require more frequent maintenance to keep it looking its best.
  • Partial Exposure: Partial exposure provides a good balance between aesthetics and durability. The exposed aggregate adds texture to the surface, which can help hide wear and tear over time.
  • Full Exposure: Full exposure can enhance the durability of the floor, as the exposed aggregate acts as a wear surface. It can withstand heavy traffic and is less likely to show scratches or wear patterns.

How is polished concrete different from regular concrete?

Polished concrete undergoes a grinding and polishing process that regular concrete does not. This process enhances the appearance, durability, and stain resistance of the concrete surface.

How long does it take to polish concrete?

The time it takes to polish concrete can vary depending on the size and complexity of the area, the level of polishing desired, and the condition of the concrete. In general, the process can take anywhere from a few days to a week or more.

How long does polished concrete last compared to other flooring options?

Polished concrete is known for its durability and longevity, often outlasting many other flooring options. While the exact lifespan can vary depending on factors such as maintenance, traffic levels, and the quality of the initial installation, properly maintained polished concrete floors can last for decades.

Comparatively, some other flooring options have different lifespans:

  • Carpet: Typically lasts 5-15 years, depending on quality and maintenance.
  • Vinyl: Can last 10-20 years, but may need replacing sooner in high-traffic areas.
  • Hardwood: With proper care, hardwood floors can last 25 years or more.
  • Tile: Durable and can last 20 years or more, but may require regrouting or repairs over time.
  • Laminate: Generally lasts 10-20 years, depending on quality and wear.

Overall, polished concrete is often considered one of the longest-lasting flooring options available, making it a popular choice for both residential and commercial spaces looking for a durable and low-maintenance flooring solution.

How much does polished concrete cost?

The cost of polished concrete can vary depending on factors such as the size of the area, the level of polishing desired, and the condition of the existing concrete. In general, polished concrete can cost anywhere from $40-$120 per m2.

What happens with cracks, damage or control joint while my concrete is getting ground and polished?


Small cracks can be filled with a specially formulated color-matched patch filler to create a seamless surface.

For larger cracks, a more extensive repair may be needed, such as cutting out the damaged section and patching it with new concrete.


Surface damage, such as chips or scratches, can be repaired using patching compounds or fillers designed for concrete.

Deeper damage may require more extensive repairs, such as grinding down the surface to remove the damaged area and then patching it with new concrete.


Control joints, which are intentional cuts in the concrete to control cracking, will be filled with a  specially formulated color-matched patch filler to prevent the edges chipping while grinding. These can be later recut at the discretion or left in depending on the movement of the concrete.

Expansion joints, which allow for the natural movement of the concrete, can also be filled with a flexible material to maintain a smooth surface.

It's important to address cracks, damage, and joints before polishing to ensure a uniform and high-quality finish. Your polishing professional can assess the condition of your concrete floor and recommend the best approach for repairing and preparing it for polishing.

What stage of a build should i polish my concrete?

For projects requiring heavier aggregate exposure, we recommend grinding the concrete slab after it has been poured and allowed to cure for at least 21 days. This should ideally be done before the construction of frames begins.

For light to medium grinds and polishing, we suggest timing the process for when the house is weatherproof, typically just before or just after the gib installation.

After our polishing process is completed, it is crucial to protect the floor to prevent damage.

Get a Free Quote

Ready to polish your concrete?

Get a quote today.

We strive to provide the most cost-effective polished concrete solutions in New Zealand. Our commitment is to beat any competitor's quote by 10%, provided that the quote is for a full mechanically polished concrete floor.

Graphic design of a grid that resembles grids of polished concrete