Nowadays, power trowels are the most important tools in concrete sites.it has high efficiency, simple operation, the best level and polishing advantages. through this article, I would like you can study more knowledge about this style of machine.
What Is a Power Trowel
A power trowel is a concrete polishing tool, it is widely used in construction sites for applying a smooth and flat concrete floor. 2 types of power trowel are available in the market. walking behind type and ride-on type. Generally speaking, the walking behind type is used for small concrete slabs, Ride-on type is widely used in big concrete projects. About the working diameters, the working behind power trowel has 24”,36′,’40” and 48”, ride on power trowel has 30” and 40”. a lot of persons desire to know how to operate a power trowel for polishing concrete slabs. this is why I write this article. hope it is helpful for you.
Before start the power trowel
Whether it is a new or an old machine. we have to do some inspections before starting it, owing to the power trowel is made of a gasoline engine, We not only must check the machine but also make a full inspection of the gasoline engine and we have to do the usual maintenance of the gasoline engine. Note: all of the walking behind power trowels are made of single-cylinder 4 stroke air-cooled engines. the ride-on power trowels are made of double cylinders 4 stroke air-cooled engines, considering quality and price, recommend you to choose Honda engine, North American users can click here to study honda engines.
Step 1.Checking the lubricating oil by the Pour 500ml~1L of lubricating oil into the engine gearbox, and fill 92~98# petrol into the fuel tank, it is important for the gasoline engine working life.
Step 2. Checking the lubricating oil in the trowel gearbox, there is an oil window on the side of the gearbox. keep the oil level in half of the oil window. otherwise, the internal gears will be broken by the high temperature. for the ride on power trowel, owing to self-start function, have to check the wire connection, keep the electrical starter connect the battery well. if you don’t use it for a long time, the cables have to remove from the battery.
Step 3. Make sure that the spider arms are greased every time. This will make pitching the blades easy and make sure that your trowel rides over the concrete properly
Starting power trowel
Starting walking behind power trowel: Turn on the Choke and pulling the rolling plate quickly, after the engine is started, turn off the choke, now you can adjust the throttle for increasing and reducing running speed.
Starting ride on power trowel: Most of the Ride-on power trowels have a self-started function. you can start the machine with the started key. there are 2 pedals on the trowel, the right pedal is throttle switch, the left pedal is off switch. when you start it, you must depress the left pedal by your left, when you want to turn off the machine, you just need to move out of your left foot from the left pedal. the speed adjusted by your right foot.
Operating the power trowel
Operating walking behind power trowel: After running the machine. you can press and lift the handle for changing direction. put a little bit of pressure down on the handle, the machine will move to the right gently. If you lightly lift the handle, the machine will move to the left slightly.
Operating ride on power trowel:there are 2 handrails in front of the machine for changing the direction. push both of the handrails, the machine will move straight, pull both handrails, the machine will move backward. push the right handrail and pull the left handrail, the machine will turn left. pull the right handrail and push the left handrail, the machine will turn right. push both handrails to left, it will move to the left, push both handrails to right, it will move to the left.
through these steps, I trust you can operate the machine now, but different concrete slabs have little different operations, for example, the dry slabs need big power to press the handrail and the speed is different from wet slabs. after you have plenty of operating experience, you will feel easy to work.
Now it’s time to study how to make concrete slabs by the power trowel,you can watch the video too.
Choose a right models
if the working space is smaller than 1000 square feet, walking behind a power trowel is enough. usually, the 40” is popularly used in the project, if it is a narrow or internal area,24” is popular. For large areas over 1000 square feet, a ride on power trowel will help you finish quickly before the concrete sets too firmly
Checking concrete firm before trowelling
after the concrete poured for a few hours, and then check the floor, make sure it is firm enough, you can test it by doing a footprint test, stand onto the slab and measure the imprint depth. If the imprint is 1/8 of an inch deep or less, the concrete is ready for troweling.
Float the conrete for smooth the floor
use the power trowel with the pan firstly, Run the machine at 3/4 speed and keep the pan of the machine distributed on the concrete and avoids digging into the concrete .it is for floating reduces bumps and fills in the hollows.
Finish the Concrete to Seal, Close, and Polish
after the first floating, remove the pan of the machine and adjust the blade angle to the first polishing. Run the power trowel at the highest speed this time. owing to the blade adjusted to the highest angle, it will give the highest pressure on the slab. Make as many passes at right angles as desired to get a matte, light gloss, or gleaming finish.