Operation Seal: Sealing The Brewery Floor – Part 1

There are four steps to sealing a brewery floor:
1) Wash, sweep and clean floor
2) Apply a degreaser to remove any grease
3) Apply an etching solution to etch the concrete
4) Coat with concrete floor sealant.

We are brewers, not floor sealers. We’ve spent years studying beer and we’ve only spent a few hours studying concrete flooring. We knew going into this project it could prove difficult. We were right…

washing the brewery floorIt all started on a clear and starry night back on the first weekend of February. The EBC crew arrived to the brewery Friday night to prep the floor getting it ready to apply sealant the following day. First step was to thoroughly mop and sweep the floor, remove any paint on the floor leftover from paint day (there was a lot) and remove any other random debris. This took several moppings, sweepings and scrapings.

Satisfied, we decided to move to step two – the degreaser. Not entirely sure what to do, we read the instructions of not only the degreaser, but the etcher and the sealant to plan our course of action. Commander Matt Enegren, while reading the sealer, started reading out loud “Cement floors should dry at least 30 days before applying sealant.” We all paused and frantically tried to think back to when the cement was laid on the floor.

January 21st – only 14 days had passed. Not enough time. Depressed, all that was left to do was have a beer until our ride arrived.

sad brewers

It all started again on a clear and starry night back on the second weekend of February. After talking to the sealant company the previous Monday, we placed a sheet of saran wrap over the new cement during the week to check for condensation. If the sheet was dry, time to apply. If the sheet was wet, don’t apply yet. In excited anticipation, we removed the sheet and it was dry, time to apply. Elated, we started to get the degreaser ready.

But then we noticed that there were dark spots on the concrete under where the saran wrap was placed. Dark spots, we figured, were wet spots.

So for the next hour or so we debated whether we should start applying the degreaser or delay another weekend. We decided to wait at least until Saturday morning to decide.

Here we go again, again
The day started off wonderfully with our apartment water being shut off due to a leak elsewhere in the building. Only 1 and a half of us managed a shower. Things quickly got better when we went to Cactus Patch Restaurant in Old Town Moorpark and had biscuits and gravy for breakfast.

We contacted Peter Stevens at Perma who sold us our sealant and told him of our situation. He said things were probably fine, and if there were no spots in the morning we figured we’d be good to go. We just want to take this time to thank Peter Stevens who answered a lot of dumb questions we had, whether it be early in the morning or late in the evening. Probably wouldn’t have sealed our floor without him. So if you ever find yourself needing to seal a concrete floor, be sure to use Perma and ask for Peter Stevens.

We arrived at the brewery to find the wet looking spots gone. It was on.

mixing degreaserStep one, mix degreaser with hot water. Step two, realize the hot water isn’t hooked up yet. Step three, drive to Chris’ girlfriend Brie’s house with empty 5 gallon kegs to fill with hot water. Step 4, drive back to brewery and mix degreaser with hot water.

Applying the degreaser is pretty straight forward. You mix it with the hot water then mop it onto the floor. Once applied to floor, scrub it into floor with deck scrubbers. Once the floor is thoroughly scrubbed, rinse several times with water to remove all of the degreaser.

mopping degreaserscrubbing degreaser

The day was going well. The degreaser was applied and rinsed with no issues. We could only hope the etching solution would go on so smoothly.

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One Response to “Operation Seal: Sealing The Brewery Floor – Part 1”

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