Care & Maintenance for all Products
No maintenance is required when a client looks after their concrete product from Mitchell Bink Concrete Design. The below advises on the best way to protect and maintain your original concrete product.
Do not drag, slide or throw objects on to the concrete piece. This includes (but not limited to) items such as handbags, groceries, washing basket, serving dishes, plates, mugs, chopping boards, boxes, pans, firewood. Scratches in the sealer could occur if this happens. It is always best to pick up and place an object down. Be gentle when placing items down onto the piece or moving them across the piece. Never cut directly onto the piece. Once the sealer is scratched/pierced this is when it becomes more susceptible to staining. By being aware and avoiding putting anything hard, heavy, rough or dragging items across your top, will help avoid marks or scratches in the sealer. Using items such as place mats, decorative mats or tea towels as a protective barrier can assist. Small stick-on felt pieces can be applied to the bottom of objects to minimise possible scratching. Should you scratch your piece, please refer to ‘After Delivery, Installation or Collection’ on how this may be repaired.
Cleaning couldn’t be easier. Damp soft sponge, very mild cleaners or other water-based cleaners are all you need. Do not use products that contain trichlorethane, methylene chloride or have high alkaline/pH levels. Avoid cleaners with a citrus cent, citrus ingredients, acidic based, bleach-based, gumption or Jif. Abrasive cleansers or scrubbers should not be used. Staining/discolouration can occur overtime when using products mentioned (or similar). After cleaning the surface, ensure it is dry before placing objects on top of the surface. Avoid forceful scrubbing if you notice stains or marks as this will result in damage to the sealer. Do not wipe over the piece with the cloth you use to wash the dishes as this may transfer oils and other contaminates.
We recommend our clients wipe up spills, foods or liquids when they are noticed. Try not to leave spills, foods or liquids on your piece for a period of time. Acidic liquids or products with staining agents such as (but not limited to) lemon juice, balsamic vinegar, oil, red wine, turmeric, coffee etc. can result in staining/discolouration if left on. For products such as cooking oil, hand soap, hand cream, liquid foundation, bio oil, hand sanitizer etc., place these objects onto a decorative dish/plate and not directly onto the top, that way if they drip down or leak, the dish/plate will catch the residue and not seep into your concrete over time. Should you stain your benchtop, please refer to ‘After Delivery, Installation’ or Collection on how this may be repaired.
Trapping water or other liquids
If you have items such as (but not limited to) a vase, pot plant, hand soap, bottle of oil etc. sitting on your surface, it is best to place something underneath, like a decorative dish/plate. When water or other liquids drip down or through these objects, the water or liquid can become trapped between your surface and the object, with nowhere for the liquid to go but into the concrete. Depending on the object, once the object is removed, your piece/sealer may be able to breathe out this moisture, but if it has been there for a while or the liquid
contains staining agents, it may mark or cause discolouration. If you notice areas like this, don’t cover them up, leave them uncovered and try to let it breathe. Should you mark your benchtop by trapping a liquid or leaving on a staining agent, please refer to ‘After Delivery, Installation or Collection’ on how this may be repaired.
While durable, both concrete and natural stones like marble are ‘brittle’ materials, as opposed to ‘elastic’ materials (since it’s not plastic). Whilst it is difficult to chip, it is possible, so we recommend being careful around the edges. Should you chip your piece, please refer to ‘After Delivery, Installation or Collection’ on how this may be repaired.
As with almost all types of benchtop surfaces, do not place hot pots or pans directly onto the benchtop. You should use trivets or chopping boards.
Avoid excess weight being placed on your concrete product (for e.g. standing on your concrete piece). This more so applies for areas with no support underneath such as overhang on a kitchen benchtop, the centre or edge of a dining table top or benchseat. This could cause the piece to crack or sag overtime.
Bathroom Vanity Tops, Trough Sinks, Basin Bowls, Integrated Sinks
Whilst following the Care & Maintenance Guide for all products, there are a couple of other tips for products in the Bathroom. In particular, the areas around cleaning and trapping water and other liquids.
For integrated sinks in bathroom vanity tops or trough style sinks, if your sink has a waste plug, it is important you don’t use strong/harsh cleaning products to clean your waste. Avoid using a rough sponge or scourer to clean your waste. How you clean your waste, will also affect the concrete area around the waste, so follow our same steps under Cleaning in Care & Maintenance for cleaning your waste. Avoid forceful scrubbing on or around your waste as this will result in damage to the sealer.
If you see water pooling down the sides or at the bottom of your integrated sink or trough style sink, wipe over it. This will aid in long term appearance and minimise possible discolouration.
It is important to follow the steps under Trapping Water and Other Liquids to ensure certain objects aren’t sitting directly on your benchtop and have some form of decorative dish/plate underneath to minimise the chance of marking or discolouration.
If you use products such as oil-based foundation, oil-based body products, nail polish remover or products with staining agents (such a tumeric or coffee) and you drop or spill this on your top, wipe it up as soon as you notice it. Leaving this could cause marking or discolouration.
Integrated Kitchen Sink, Integrated Drain Grooves or Ramp
Integrated kitchen sinks, integrated drain grooves or ramp are certainly possible and features we have done for previous projects, but we need to let our clients know the ongoing upkeep these particular elements may need.
As we explain above, Concrete is a product that needs a little extra care to alleviate things like scratching or staining as it is a sealed natural stone. This care is more so required when we do integrated sinks and drain grooves/ramp in kitchens as these features are specifically there for draining liquids and foods as well as normally placing heavy, sharp or hot items into them.
This sink and drain grooves/ramp will be your main point for cleaning and it will be a high traffic area for foods, liquids, heavy, sharp and hot items.
At Mitchell Bink Concrete Design, we offer one kitchen integrated sink and drain grooves/ramp that have been designed in a way to be tapered to help drain liquids but in everyday use there will more than likely still be pooling (as there is in a normal kitchen sink). Pooling of certain liquids and foods is what can lead to marking and staining overtime, as well as throwing objects into the sink (rather than gently placing them) or putting hot pots and pans into the sink.
We understand this can be too much ongoing care for some, and others choose to be aware and make a habit of wiping over their sink and drain grooves/ramp and being extra cautious.
Aesthetically they are both beautiful features, but the practicality can be too much work or hassle for some clients which we completely understand.