Tal Screedmaster

A plain screed floor is an attractive and cost-effective way to achieve a cement look without incurring the cost of an expensive overlay. There are various options available, including the Tal Screedmaster which is usually installed under tiles or carpets; however, Heinz and Aletté-Johanni Winckler used it as a finish in their Somerset West home.

Tal Screedmaster sets quickly and has built-in qualities that prevent cracks, resulting in a smooth, level and hard-wearing floor surface that must be sealed with a long-lasting anti-scratch coat (Tal UraSeal WDS) or a special wax topcoat. The wax has to be applied several times a year, depending on foot traffic.

Installation 

Apply two layers of a priming product such as Tal Floor Primer and allow it to cure for 12 hours before doing the Screedmaster installation. Once the Screedmaster mix is ready, pour it onto the floor to the required thickness (from 3mm up to 16mm in a single application) and then let it cure for 24 hours.

Cost 

From R80/m2 (at 3mm thick)

It's a DIY job! 

Tal has a handy installation guide on their website.

Technical Finishes Smooth ’n Patch

Smooth ’n Patch is a decorative, pigmented cement-based top layer that has to be mixed before application. It is self-levelling and can be applied over concrete or tiles, as was done in Fix it with Flair 2015 runners-up Anton and Julie Oosthuizen’s house in Greyton.

Installation 

As with any cement floor, the surface should be primed with Smooth ’n Patch Liquid or Seal & Strengthen. If you’re installing Smooth ’n Patch over tiles, prepare the surface with Technical Finishes Probond, says Chanté Mynhardt, sales and marketing assistant at Technical Finishes. “Smooth ’n Patch can be installed over any tiles, as long as they aren’t cracked or damaged. They should be grinded first to get rid of the glaze and to ensure that the primer can be absorbed into the tile.”

Once primed, apply the Smooth ’n Patch in a layer that’s 3–4mm thick. It dries fairly quickly (about 30–40 minutes, depending on the size of the surface) after which the Smooth ’n Patch mixture has to be gently hand-floated to ensure a smooth surface. Once this is done, allow the surface to set overnight – curing takes at least 24 hours. The floor must then be sealed with any of a variety of sealants, depending on your preference for either a high-gloss or matte finish. It’s advisable to apply 2–3 coats of sealant.

Cost 

Between R300 and R600/m2, including installation; prices vary depending on the thickness of the application.

It's a DIY job! 

Using an approved applicator is highly recommended but Anton and Julie did it themselves.

Coprox

Coprox Waterproof Dualcoat is both a cementitious overlay and waterproof layer in one. It is applied onto a pre-existing screed using a trowel to achieve a smooth skim coat finish. This application can also be done on walls using a brush that creates a textured effect.

Installation 

If applying Waterproof Dualcoat over a new screed, make sure that the screed has cured for between 21–28 days and is completely dry. Allow the Dualcoat to dry for 48 hours before applying two coats of Coprox Wall and Floor Clear Sealer. Leave the floor to dry for a further 24 hours before walking on it or arranging any furniture on it.

Cost 

About R135/m2 (if applied±5mm thick

It’s a DIY job! 

Coprox Waterproof Dualcoat is sold in 25kg bags andcomes with step-by-step instructionson the packaging.