Tom Bagsarian
Tom Bagsarian
I am every car manufacturer's worst nightmare. On average, an American buys a new vehicle every six years. I've managed to ride out the storm and have stretched that number to 10 years. I'm happy to say, I'm only on my third car.

Luck may have something to do with it. After all, I don't think Chevrolet engineers even believed a 1983 Cavalier (sticker price: $7200) would last 12 years and 160,000 miles.

Rather than luck, I believe proper maintenance (lubrication, filters, etc.) has allowed me to live without being held hostage by new car payments.

I recalled my experience with cars after reading our feature ("The Importance of Maintenance") about proper maintenance of polished floors. Paul Lundberg, director of sales and operations at VMC Technical Assistance Corp., extols the virtues of polished concrete floors. But, he warns, you must be careful what you sell.

One of the benefits of polished floors is not no-maintenance. If you sell it as such, “it may come back to bite you, as I have seen many times,” he writes.

Over-promising not only results in a disappointed customer. It also can create a bad reputation for polished concrete among specifiers and architects.

It's as important to educate your customer as it is to perform a quality installation. The customer “will not be disappointed when the polish begins to dull because he will know there is a solution in bringing back the polish,” Lundberg explains.

This is not the first time I've read or heard about this concern. When I visited a training session for applicators during the summer, a couple of people told me their concern about having to “resell the job.”.

This is a problem we must overcome if we are to expand the concrete surface treatment industry. Contractors who install epoxies, water repellents, and sealers all face this same dilemma.

Our goal is to help you, our reader-contractors, and your customers, share in the proper information on how to treat and maintain concrete surfaces.

While Concrete Surfaces provides a great written educational transfer, there are some other venues that should be of interest.

We have included some of the registration information for World of Concrete 2008, PACE 2008, and the Surfaces show. These exhibitions offer great opportunities to meet with the people who know this business. Why not ask your customer if they plan on attending any of these shows?

Another way to help in this education transfer is to leave a copy of this magazine with your best customers. Our industry coverage will educate them on some of the best practices in the concrete surface treatment area.

If you don't want to give up this copy, send me an e-mail. I can send you a few extra copies to share.

Tom Bagsarian

Managing Editor