CONCRETE

How to Maintain Newly Stained Concrete Floors

Since we seem to be staying home more and opting for the “stay-cation” the trends are improving, renewing and revamping our patios and outdoor living areas.  One of the new hot trends is taking dull boring grey and plain concrete patios to a new level of stunning beauty.  There are exciting new products on the market that are versatile, durable and cost-effective, fun and fashionable that take concrete to a focal point in decorating.

Your floor should be sealed with a sturdy top coat product.  An unsealed concrete floor will absorb food stains and is very susceptible to fading and absorbing water, which can discolor the surface.  The floor should be waxed every six months to protect traffic areas from the wear and tear that goes with being walked on.  Wax also fills in small scratches.  The sealing and waxing is an easy TIY job and you should not have issues with maintenance.

 
Different types of decorative concrete

Concrete patios are being dressed up with acid stains in every color, with overlays that mimic the look of flagstone, with stamped patterns that are unique, colored concrete, engraved concrete, exposed aggregate and numerous other types of concrete treatments.  We will talk about some of the most popular applications.

Stamped concrete is where patterns and textures are pressed into newly poured concrete before it is fully dry.  Combined with stains that add realistic color, stamped concrete can imitate the look for brick, cobblestones, flagstone, wood, pebbles or eve seashells.  Due to the wide array of options with stamped concrete, this choice is becoming very popular with outdoor patio decorating.

Overlays are another option for turning plain-Jane concrete into a fabulous faux-stone centerpiece for your patio.  An overlay involves laying a scratch coat of a high polymer modified concrete over your existing concrete area, formulating a pattern with grout tape and then pouring another thing layer over that for texture.  When you remove the tape from the almost dry area, it leaves impressions to look like grout lines and when you ad color, most people will think you have a genuine stone floor.

Acid stains/staining is often called colored concrete and this type of finish is increasing in popularity due to unique color stains and outcomes that is achieved by combining colors.  Acid stains and staining penetrate the concrete surface and react with the calcium hydroxide in the concrete.  This type of application will not fade, peel or chip off.  What is so exciting about this type of application is that each slab area will react differently due to the color and show different degrees of intensity, which is why it is so popular.  You are acting like an artist with a blank canvas and can create your own color pallet.

There are so many different decorative applications and each one will result in a totally different look and feel.  Keep in mind that you can take your dull boring grey concrete and turn it into a one of a kind design, texture and color.  With so many products available, we should all jump at the opportunity to turn our grey patios into a color prism of excitement.  The transformation will be magical and add to our enjoyment of outdoor living.

 
How can I clean oil stains off my driveway?

If your concrete is saturated with oil, grease and radiator fluid, then your drive needs a face lift.  If your drive had “wet” oil and grease stains, then start with kitty litter.  Cover the entire stain generously with kitty litter and allow it to sit for a few days.  The litter will absorb the excess oil and make the stain removal easier.  Once you have removed the kitty litter after a few days, you are ready for cleaning.  First hose down the entire area, concrete is porous and by allowing the concrete to absorb a layer of water, you will be able to work the clean into the surface.  Treat the oldest and darkest stains first.  Use a solution of one part water to one part cleaner (Clean Advantage is a great product available).  Allow this cleaning solution to sit for several minutes and then scrub the area with a broom.  Once you have cleaned and hosed down the area, you should notice that in place of the dark spots are bright clean spots.  So, although you had rid your concrete of the dark stains, the concrete will still look uneven in appearance.  Using less potent mixture of cleaner and water and treating the entire driveway and scrubbing will remove tire marks, light rust stains and grime.

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