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The floor of the Evergreen Christian Church in the small Rocky Mountain town of Evergreen, Colorado, wasn’t slated for renewal this year. It was only four years ago when members dedicated their new sanctuary, whose unique architecture and open symbolism in design, according to the church, “represents lifting up all believers to freedom of worship and breaking through to the Light.” But, earlier than planned, the sanctuary’s brilliance began to diminish as the original acid stain on the concrete floor deteriorated.

Closer inspection proved that the stain product previously used had been applied to an improperly prepared surface, so the floor coloring was not performing up to expectations. Church leaders chose to resurface their floor with a more durable alternative, providing a distinctive appearance that is both beautiful and capable of lasting many years–LITHOCHROME® Tintura™ Stain from L.M. Scofield Company.

“We call this color Mountain Honey and it’s beautiful,” said Sherry White, Director of Marketing for L.M. Scofield Company. “It’s an example of how a custom color can be produced to suit any project and setting. This color was formulated to harmonize with the oak woodwork inside the Church and the rocky terrain outside. It adds glowing warmth to the church that seems so appropriate for this spiritual setting.”

BEFORE: Aggressive mechanical abrasion was required to prepare the floor inside the Evergreen Christian Church, Evergreen, Colo. for a new stain by L.M. Scofield Company. Photos Courtesy of Architectural Harmonics, Boulder, Colo.LITHOCHROME Tintura Stain is a nonacidic, two-component, penetrating, reactive staining  product that chemically combines with cured concrete or cementitious toppings to produce unique color effects ranging from light tints to brilliant, opaque hues. LITHOCHROME Tintura Stain chemically bonds with the substrate to form a dense, long-wearing colored surface and delivers bright vivid colors not available with traditional stains.

AFTER: L.M. Scofield LITHOCHROME® Tintura™ Stain produced a sanctuary that glows with honey radiance. Photos Courtesy of Architectural Harmonics, Boulder, Colo. “The great news about Tintura is its predictability,” said Scott Thome, Director of Product Services for Scofield. “We can design custom colors such as Mountain Honey and produce surfaces that are unique to any location or application. Yet, we are also able to replicate results over and over. And, the color, tint and texture are completely consistent, batch to batch and project to project. Where acid stains have uncontrollable imperfections, LITHOCHROME Tintura Stain has a more even, consistent, predictable look.”

As the crew began preparing the concrete surface before applying the new stain, it became evident the premature failure of the previous product occurred because the floor’s concrete matrix was not “open.” Thus, it was necessary to use mechanical abrasion to allow the new stain to penetrate the surface. “Before applying a new product, it is imperative to remove all coatings, contaminants, and weakened surface materials first,” said Thome. “Then, if the concrete surface is not porous, it will be necessary to open it up, either with some kind of abrasion, such as sandblasting and scarifying, or with a chemical wash. Careful sub-floor preparation is essential to prevent defects and to allow the new product to permanently bond with the substrate.”

Due to Evergreen’s elevation of 7,040 feet, sealing the church floor’s new finish required a specialized approach. Normally, the sealer would have been applied using an airless sprayer, cup gun, or HVCP sprayer, but the cool, dry mountain air would have cured the sealer before it reached the floor. Instead, Denver-based High Country Coatings used a Scofield Sealer Applicator to produce a finish that is uniform and luxurious. Of particular importance to many building owners and occupants is the impact some concrete staining products can have on the environment. LITHOCHROME Tintura Stain provides a “green,” LEED®- compliant alternative to acid stains. It goes on cleaner, does not produce acid residue or require repeated rinsing, and contains no VOCs to outgas so it does not contribute to Sick Building Syndrome. In markets where hazardous waste disposal is expensive, or in buildings that must remain occupied during the concrete staining process, LITHOCHROME Tintura Stain is a superior alternative to acid-based products.

And, when the job was finished, LITHOCHROME Tintura Stain produced one final important benefit. “It was very cost-effective,” said Thome. “Because there is no acid residue removal required, labor savings are significant. LITHOCHROME Tintura Stain can be applied using about half the steps required to apply an acid stain.” The stain also delivers excellent coverage so less material may be required.

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