One of the main reasons to have our concrete polished is to keep the level of surface even, however one may question the definition of evenness. Like the debate over gold/white or blue/black dress, some may see the floor to be uniform while others may view it lop sided.
In general, while making the decision of whether the ground is even or not, one needs to pay attention to two things – level and flat. Flatness concerns with the flatness variation over short distances (i.e., 30 centimeters) and level deals with longer distances (i.e., 3 meters). Hence, a surface may be level but not flat and it may also be flat but not level.
With concrete polishing, one can effectively decide the kind of surface evenness they long for. The decision making process is also made more efficient with the Free Movement (FM) guidance of FM1, FM2, and FM3.
Free movement is closely related to materials handling equipment. In a free movement area, equipment or people can travel randomly in any direction, as in the case of carpark, retail outlets, or food distribution industries. Whereas in a defined movement area, equipments tend to have fixed pathways and are likely to move with narrow isle, like a storage rack.
Thus, FM1, FM2, and FM3 provide details of areas that have specific traffic movements and this subsequently lead to better decision making for concrete polishing. As of FM1, it means that high level of flatness is required within the area, thus, a higher grit diamond polish is regarded as necessary.
Next, FM 2 means that the area will have wide isle and stacking up to 8 meters high, which emphasis on the importance of levelling. Thus, there is a need for wide area concrete polishing. Last but not least, FM 3 which is commonly found in retail and manufacturing areas where high human traffic is experienced. This in turn put pressure on obtaining better polished concrete but at the same time, owners may tend to go for the lighter grit polished as a result of cost reduction.
In summary, the higher the classification, the greater likelihood of getting a higher polishing grit level, and costlier the process will become. On the other hand, there are also users who chose not to follow the classifications but rather pay attention to the flooring during installation. Commonly, minor variations are not likely to have a vast effect on the floor performance especially if they are newly installed or constantly maintained. Nevertheless, it is always on the recommendation list to hire an expert to provide regular assessment on the floor condition, so that the best actions are taken.