It’s not uncommon for power tools to have multiple uses, but the versatility of an angle grinder surprises even the most experienced users out there. You can use grinders for sanding, sharpening, and polishing, but also cutting metal and handling different projects.
Would you like to learn how to grind concrete with an angle grinder? The truth is that the process of smoothing rough concrete with this tool is more interesting and easier than people thought. Here is what you need to know about these tools and how to use them for grinding concrete floors!
Table of Contents
1. Can I Use an Angle Grinder to Level Concrete?
Do you have an unlevel concrete surface and you’d like to resolve that problem? The good news is that a concrete angle grinder can smoothen, level, and polish these surfaces.
1.1. Why You Should Use an Angle Grinder for Smoothing Concrete?
The short answer is yes, but allow us to offer a detailed explanation. So, the main reasons why you should use this tool include that it’s portable and compact. Therefore, it will be easy to hold a concrete angle grinder in your hands and move it around.
You’ll also benefit from the grinder’s versatility. Why would you buy multiple tools that you only need occasionally? Instead, an angle grinding tool has multiple uses. These include cutting metal, bricks, concrete, plastic, and other materials. So, the potential of your grinder only depends on the blade you use.
1.2. What Projects Are Suitable for an Angle Grinder?
The best angle grinder concrete tool is the one that fits your needs the most. While the most common size is around four inches, you’ll find bigger tools on the market, too.
Angle grinders are affordable tools, although their price might vary. If you plan on using the unit frequently, it could be wise to pick a more powerful motor. Therefore, look for a motor with a minimum strength of 5-9 amps.
Here is an overview of projects suitable for an angle grinder.
1.2.1. Cut Tile, Stone, and Concrete
Apart from concrete grinding, it’s possible to cut this material, and also handle cutting stone and tile applications. If you can’t use tile cutters because the area is hard to reach, cutting concrete with an angle grinder becomes a viable option.
Here are the steps for handling this task:
- Start by outlining the cut on both tile’s sides. Furthermore, use clamps to tighten the tile.
- Begin cutting from the backside. You want to aim for straight and crisp corners.
- It’s smart to use a dry-cut diamond blade for this project.
1.2.2. Restore Cutting Edges
If you want to restore cutting edges, the best thing to do is to use a grinding wheel. So, you can use this option for the initial grinding of lawnmower blades, hatchets, axes, etc.
Check out these tips to optimize the process:
- Always connect the blade to a vise, and then use clamps to attach it to the workspace. Make sure to use the guard to ensure the sparks go in the opposite direction from you.
- Now, align the blade and the grinding wheel. Activate the tool and use steady moves and minimal pressure.
1.2.3. Cutting Out Old Mortar
It’s tricky to use a hammer and chisel for these projects, so grinding can be a smart alternative. Now, here are the steps to follow for cutting out old mortar:
- Use a tuckpointing wheel for these projects.
- Make several passes to clear the joint, but stay somewhat away from the brick because you don’t want to risk any damage.
1.2.4. Cut Rods, Bars, and Bolts
Would you like to cut a metal bolt or rod? If the answer is yes, these are the steps to follow:
- A metal-cutting blade is mandatory for these projects, so make sure to acquire a suitable one.
- Mount the cut-off wheel and hold the tool safely.
- Get the tool close to the metal without applying too much pressure. Dropping the wheel should do most of the work as soon as it touches the surface.
1.2.5. Metal Cleaning
Cleaning metal structures with an angle grinder
Source: Cleaning metal structures with an angle grinder
If you have a wire wheel or wire cup brush, it’s possible to clean metal with an angle grinder. Here is how to do that:
- You can use clamps to secure the workpiece.
- The brush should always spin in the opposite direction, and not into the edge. So, make sure you position it properly since you want to avoid kickbacks.
- It’s possible to use a wire wheel to remove paint, too, especially since they fit into tight areas.
2. Pick the Right Diamonds
Selecting the right diamonds is a crucial consideration for angle grinding projects. That’s why the experts advise taking the time to understand the advantages of various styles and bonds. The primary factor to take into account is that you don’t want the diamonds to ruin the floor beyond fixing, especially if you plan on polishing it.
It’s smart to try a particular diamond on that type of concrete. Therefore, if you have an option, test and confirm you picked the right diamond. You can also talk to the manufacturer to help you make the right choice. Once you find the ideal option, the results will exceed your expectations.
3. How to Grind Concrete with an Angle Grinder
Are you ready to discover the details of grinding concrete smooth and ensuring an optimal surface? Here is a simple video that shows concrete grinding. You can find a comprehensive overview of the entire project below.
3.1. What Tools Do We Need?
Before you start grinding, it’s vital to prepare the necessary tools.
Here is a list of everything that you’ll need to grind a concrete surface:
- An angle grinder – the general idea is that it should have a blade of 4-7 inches in diameter. You might also need a dust shroud, and don’t forget the diamond polishing pads or similar alternatives.
- Safety equipment – wear proper clothes, and put on a mask and goggles. Kneepads could also be useful when working on the floors.
- Cleaning supplies – depending on your needs, you could use a vacuum, mop, or broom.
3.2. Steps to Grinding Concrete Successfully
Angle grinder scoring concrete
Now that you have everything ready, it’s time to move to the concrete grinding process. Let’s use the garage floor as an example because it’s an excellent testing area before you proceed to more sensitive ones.
3.2.1. Clean the Surface First
The first thing to do is to clean the floor. Therefore, use a broom to sweep it clean and remove any bumps from gums, grease, and similar stains. However, consider vacuuming it or even using a pressure washer if it’s a necessary solution. After the cleaning, you shouldn’t have any residue where the grinder might get stuck.
3.2.2. Get the Angle Grinder Ready
It’s much easier to divide the floor into sections because you’ll have more options to move around and better control of work done. Additionally, if you want to minimize dust problems, it’s smart to use a dust shroud for the project.
Now it’s time to mount the wheel on the tool. Make sure to not connect your grinder to the electricity socket yet. Therefore, check it’s powered off and mount a diamond polishing or an alternative pad. Finally, wear safety equipment, such as earplugs, gloves, masks, and kneepads.
3.2.3. Start Grinding!
The time has come to smooth the garage floor by working with your angle grinder. Also, if you have problems with reaching corners, it might be smart to use a smaller tool for those sections.
According to experts, you can divide the floor into sections, but also start by smoothing the edges first. That’s a matter of preference, so find the way that you consider most fitting. If you from the perimeter inwards, making circular moves with your grinder might be the fastest way to smooth concrete.
3.2.4. Deal with any Imperfections
Once you finish the grinding process, it’s time to check the results of your work. Therefore, start checking the floor and try to find any imperfections. If you identify that there is an area where the results aren’t up to standards, grind that section again.
However, before you do that, remove the dust shroud from the tool. That way, the grinder will have better contact with the floor. Finally, the only remaining thing is to mop or vacuum the floor to remove any dust residue.
4. Stay Safe While Smoothing Concrete
Stay safe while using an angle grinder
Apart from ensuring a smooth concrete floor, your primary requirement for angle grinder projects should be staying safe. These are power tools, so caution is necessary if you don’t want to risk injuries and other problems.
Did you know that an average grinder runs at 10,000RPMs? That’s why you should follow these steps to stay safe:
- Always wear protective equipment, such as gloves, glasses, and mask.
- Never change wheels without checking that you unplugged the grinder. That’s risky because you could accidentally activate the tool, and that leads to injuries.
- Keep the tool with both hands if possible, but always have a firm grip on the handle.
- Test a new wheel before using it on a concrete surface. That way, you’ll ensure there aren’t any defects.
- Try to ensure the debris goes down to reduce the risk of it going into your eyes.
- Never work when other people are around, especially when they don’t have protective equipment.
- Make sure there aren’t any flammable materials that could get in touch with the sparks.
5. Are the Grinders Best Tools for Grinding Concrete?
A grinder at a construction site
Grinding concrete with an angle grinder is fairly simple, which means even beginners will master the project quickly. However, you should take into account some factors that could affect the process.
The first consideration is the grinder’s size. Furthermore, it’s the blade size you want to focus on, and it should have a diameter of four to seven inches. However, the problem with these blades is that they aren’t that big. It means you’ll need patience when smoothing rough concrete surfaces, especially when dealing with large areas. If that’s the case, don’t hesitate to consider a floor grinder as an alternative.
An angle grinder is a small tool, and you’ll need to move it around. Therefore, using it for grinding floors will require going down on your knees, which can be uncomfortable. Using knee pads is a convenient option to make yourself more comfortable, but it can still be unpleasant to smooth large concrete surfaces.
Once again, we circle back to the small size of an angle grinder. It implies you’ll need plenty of time for smoothing a large surface, which doesn’t make this tool very efficient.
Additionally, it’s worth noting that you might need a wet attachment for a grinding machine. That will improve the cooling down process, and also ensure the blades don’t head and wear down quickly during use.
Angle grinders can be the perfect option for smoothing concrete surfaces, especially for at-home use. Therefore, DIY enthusiasts and individuals who need it for modest-sized areas will find these tools convenient. Always remember that the project’s success depends on the blade’s suitability and quality.
If you need high-quality blades and other products for power tools, don’t hesitate to contact NCCutiingTools. We gather a team of experts that can help with customized orders and deliver large product batches quickly. Feel free to get in touch if you have any questions or requirements related to power tools and blades!