Clean Drywall Mud Off Concrete (to Polish Concrete)

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    Hello: How do I clean dried drywall mud from unfinished concrete floors? I originally planned to install LVP but decided to polish the flors instead. Thank you in advance.

    Fort Lauderdale, Florida

    It should come right off with a floor scraper.


    You could also maybe use a concrete surface grinder, but it would show some swirl marks.

    The Bosch 1773AK, which I own and have used lots, was replaced with a newer model about 5 years ago. I talk about it here in this thread from years ago…


    They are rentable at rent-all places typically. For really large areas, there are non-hand held units that can do this job also that come with specialized vacuums for the job. Ask your rental center. Those I don’t think give swirl marks, but I’ve never used one of those stand up models, so I don’t know for sure on that matter. They cover a lot more ground way faster than a hand held type unit like I’ve shown, that I know.

    A traditional hand held sander has the risk of having its motor works being choked to death with silica from sanding the drywall residue and concrete. Higher end sanders are capable, but with an Abranet type sanding sheet versus traditional paper backed sanding sheets.

    Beware also that sanding concrete or drywall compound is notoriously bad on traditional shop vacs. You need special vacs for this to not risk also killing/seizing the motor works of your vac just like that of most sanders.

    Silica dust from either concrete or drywall sanding is notoriously fine and works its way thru most cloth or pleated type filters getting into motors. Once in the motor works, it is like throwing rocks into it and will cause the motor to irreparably seize. Trying to blow the silica out of a motor as you go along with compressed air is actually bad as it will send the super fine particulates deeper into the windings of the motor, so don’t even think about that idea. While you may think at the time that you are averting disaster trying to blow it out, the damage has been done and your unit imbued with silica dust will fail prematurely at a later date if not immediately in use. It’s not the same as blowing out wood dust. Silica dust is much finer and ‘cakes’.

    Good luck Kerry, and welcome to the forum! 🙂


    Owatonna, MN - Minnesota

    My drywall contractor recently did not cover a garage floor. the globs of mud scraped up well but still left white residue. I made my drywaller clean it up and he used a sanding sponge. When he was done you could hardly see the residue left.

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