Concrete Patio Advice

I am in the process of deciding what to do with my concrete patio. It is in good shape, however, the previous owners accidentally spilled redwood stain on it.
Has anyone stained their concrete patio, and if so how long did it hold up?
What about Trex? I have heard the horror stories of all of the lawsuits of years ago. Has it improved? What about other products like Timber Tech, Tigerwood, etc?
I am also debating on whether or not to go the tile route.
This concrete slab measures 13'x 18'. It is 15 years old.
Any feedback would be great appreciated.
Thanks.
Kate
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I have a Trex deck that I built myself about 8 years ago. Love it!
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Nothing wrong with Trex but how are you going to install it? Where do you live? How about tile, brick, or stone? If you live in a warm climate, just about anything will work. If you get hard freezes you'd have to pick something made for exterior use.
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I haven't-- but if I was going to do it- I'd call a pro and get a price on *acid* staining.

There are plenty of decent 'fake woods' out there now-- but if all you have is a stain- you don't want to go there.

Again-- if all you have is a stain, that is a serious jump in price.

If the surface is good other than the stain, you can do some nice artwork with acid and get another 50 years out of it.
Google faux bois and see what a little acid can do to concrete. You might need to poke around a bit to find an artist in your area--

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VGe52c75BjQ

You *can* do it yourself-- but, concrete lasts a long-long time, and I'd rather look at art for the rest of my life than be reminded about how I was learning that day.
Jim
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I acid stained my driveway 10 years ago and it is still holding up well. I am not sure how well it will cover up the redwood stain tho.
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On Feb 2, 11:59am, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

A key question is what kind of stain it is. If it's a solid stain, then it's a lot like paint and paint remover, power washing, may easily remove it. If it's a transparent stain that has been absorbed into the concrete, then it could be more difficult. If just plain concrete is OK and the only issue is the stained spot, first thing I'd try to do is work on removing the spot from the one area. If paint remover and power washing don't remove it, I'd try muriatic acid. Worse case if it doesn't work, sounds like you're no worse off. With any of those approaches, if it works for the one area, may be necessary to do the whole thing to get it to match.
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On 2/2/2013 12:23 AM, Kate wrote:

Not sure if this is quite the same, but ... Last year, I had two sets of stamped, stained concrete steps installed from my house to my enclosed patio. Actually they were built over older concrete steps that were too poorly spaced, so the concrete guy built them up and evened them out. Then stamped them (indented patterns)to look like wood grain and stained them a wood color.
They look great, but I have found on both sets, the top step is losing its color in one area, same place on both steps. I'm pretty sure that is courtesy of my dogs' nails as they race down the steps to go out. The rest of the steps are fine, so I don't think general wear is a problem.
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---- Beware: naive question coming:
I gather everyone's talking about having plain concrete-looking concrete, cured, hard, etc, and then decide to color it, by applying stain to it's surface.
Now, do people sometimes mix color into the WET concrete, so it's saturated througout the soon-to-harden concrete?
I would suppose that would be worth while where you knew there was going to be a lot of wear, but when that did finally happen, you'd have no color-change problems.
(This might have been covered far earlier in the thread, but by the time I got here, that part had all expired and disappeared.)
Thanks,
David
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When my neighbor had his patio poured, the concrete company put some bags of some kind of concrete dye in the cement mixer and mixed it into the mix. It has been about 5 yrs now and it still looks like it did the day it was poured as far as color is concerned.
R
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On Fri, 29 Mar 2013 02:21:07 +0000 (UTC), snipped-for-privacy@panix.com (David Combs) wrote:

Yes, and it is very durable. There are also companies that do stamped concrete with a pattern to look like stove, brick, etc.
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If all else fails, there is also solid stain for concrete. I recently went to that for my 15 year old stamped concrete patio. The original color was going out in spots. It's like a solid siding stain, ie more like paint in that it hides everything. It came out looking very good. Main difference is with stamped concrete you have variation in the coloring, which adds to the look. With solid stain, it's all uniform color. I would think that's the difference with acid staining too, that it gives variation in color, which depending on what you want, can be nice.
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Kate wrote:

I went through a whole big process of trying to figure out how to stain a concrete patio about 8 months ago. I researched everything I could find for concrete -- acid stain, transparent/translucent stain, solid stain, etc.
I ended up trying the translucent/transparent stain and it mostly didn't work. I had imagined that it would pick up the underlying variations in the concrete and show more of a marble-ized look, but that never happened. It came out like total crap. If I had to do it again, I would either skip the whole stain idea, or go with a solid color stain.
In your case, since you already have redwood stain spilled on the concrete, it may be best to just stain the whole thing with the same color (or a little darker) using a solid color concrete stain. Or, if you happen to have the same redwood stain that was accidentally spilled on the concrete by the previous owners, maybe just apply that over the whole area.
Good luck. If you do decide to take this on, let us know what you end up doing and how it works out.
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-snip-

I would still advise Jate to hire a pro- and insist he uses an *acid* stain.
/-snip-

Please.
Jim
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Jim Elbrecht wrote:

When I was doing my investigating in the various options for my situation, I researched the acid stain approach and I watched lots of YouTube videos to see how it is done etc. The final color is based on the acid reacting with the concrete.
I think in the OP's (Kate's) situation, the acid won't take correctly in the area where the redwood sealer stain is already spilled on the concrete because that area will seal off the concrete from the applied acid. So, I think that she would end up with a different color concrete patio due to the acid, but it will still show the existing stain that is now on the patio.
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That's why I'd recommend she find an artist-- or at least an experienced acid-stain mason. They will know the feasibility of removing-- or incorporating the existing stain.
Jim
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On 02/02/2013 12:23 AM, Kate wrote:

http://www.quikretecoatings.com /
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Kate wrote:

Depending on the size of the redwood stain area, you may be able to surface grind the concrete in that area to get rid of the stain.
Home Depot Tool Rental places rent something called a concrete surface grinder that may be one option. It is a hand held machine that rents for about $80, plus I think you have to buy the surface grinding wheel -- maybe $35 or so. That may be overkill for what you need to eliminate the stain, but you may want to check it out.
Or, maybe you can experiment with other types of surface grinding disks or techniques to see if any low-end or low-tech approaches will work.
For example, here is one type of concrete surface grinding disk: http://www.factoryauthorizedoutlet.com/dewalt/products/DW4965.asp .
Or, maybe you can even find a similar type of disk or block that you can try using by hand to see if it will "sand out" the area where the redwood stain is located. For that, I would look in the tool section for any kinds of disks, wheels, grinding blocks, etc. that may be worth trying.
Tool rental places also rent larger concrete surface grinding machines that use grinding blocks (I forget what they are called) that go on the bottom of the machine. I rented one once and I have the leftover blocks. Maybe a tool rental place would have a couple of used leftover blocks from people who return them with the machine, and you could try one of those.
The general idea is to see if you can sand out the redwood stain area somehow instead of trying to stain or resurface the whole patio.
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'Kate[_5_ Wrote:

Kate:
If this was an INTERIOR wood stain (which I doubt) then you could probably bleach the stain out using swimming pool chlorination crystals. If it was an EXTERIOR wood stain, the problem just got a lot harder to deal with.
INTERIOR wood stains are really nothing more than a brown dye dissolved in either mineral spirits or alcohol. So, just in the same way that you can bleach a dye out of a fabric, if you dissolve KOCl (potassium chloride) swimming pool chlorination crystals into water until they won't dissolve any more, you essentially make up a "bleach" that's stronger than the chlorine bleach you buy in supermarket laudry soap aisles. Wood workers use that concoction to bleach wood stain out of wood with unpredictable and often unattractive results. But, that's because wood has it's own colouration, and the bleach can affect the colour of the late wood in the wood grain as well. Concrete would bleach much more uniformly. (Post again if you want to know exactly how bleach removes the colours from fabrics.)
If this is an EXTERIOR wood stain, then it will have some clear "binder" added to it. This is the plastic that forms the film which suspends the coloured pigments in paints. The purpose in adding binder to exterior stains is that it both protects the wood from absorbing moisture and splitting and it also provides a film over the wood in which UV blockers can be suspended. The problem is that this binder would coat the concrete, thereby preventing the KOCl bleach from coming into contact with the stain dye molecules.
If it were me, I would try using a paint stripper that uses METHYLENE CHLORIDE as the active ingredient (such as Poly Strippa) and apply that to the stain using a stiff plastic wire scrub brush. Cover with wax paper or cling wrap to prevent the paint stripper from evaporating while it works. Allow time for the stripper to work and then gradually pull away the wax paper or whatever to expose the concrete and scrub with the stuff brush to remove the binder film from the concrete. Once the binder film has been broken up by the paint stripper, it will not reform even if the paint stripper is allowed to dry out completely. You should then be able to clean the old paint stripper and what's left of the binder film off with mineral spirits (aka: paint thinner).
Then, use household chlorine bleach on the area you stripped to see if you can lighten the stain at all. Once again, use wax paper or cling wrap over the bleach to prevent it from drying up for maximum effectiveness. If the bleach looks promising, buy some pool chlorination crystals and mix up some "bleach on steroids" and use that instead. Then rinse the bleach residue off with clean water and allow the concrete to dry for a few days.
Staining concrete will not work if you can't get that exterior stain off. The binder film in the stain will prevent your concrete stain from penetrating into the concrete.
If you can't get that stain off, then I'd suggest you glue an Olefin indoor/outdoor carpet down over your concrete patio. Olefin indoor/outdoor carpets have come a long way since the green and orange "fake grass" or "turf" you used to see being used for "carpet" decades ago.
[image:
http://www.sustainablelifestyles.com/images/productimages/inout-bella-poolscene.jpg ]
Now, MOST carpet comes in 12 foot wide rolls, although some mills make it in 13 1/2 foot widths and berbers often come in 15 foot wide rolls. If it turns out you can't get an indoor/outdoor carpet you like in a 13 1/2 foot width, you can always do something like this:
[image:
http://assets.curbly.com/photos/0000/0002/8528/124_2452_large.JPG ]
using 12 foot wide carpet and just a few feet of any other indoor/outdoor carpet. The installers will use a "hot melt tape" to tape the different pieces of carpet together, and that joints the various pieces of carpet together with very good strength.
One big advantage that carpet has over tiling is that if water gets under outdoor ceramic tile and freezes, it'll crack the tiles or pop them off altogether. If you opt for tile, ensure that you find out from the Tile Council of America what their handbook says is the proper procedure for installing ceramic tiles outdoors, and ensure the tiling contractor follows their gameplan to the letter.
Indoor Outdoor carpet is installed outdoors all the time, and you don't have to worry about it freezing or being damaged by a plastic scoop on a snow shovel or deteriorating from excessive moisture. Most indoor outdoor carpets are made from Olefin fiber, which is the most water resistant fiber carpeting is made from. And, since Olefin fiber cannot be dyed by conventional methods, you can't "un-dye" it by using bleach on it. So, you can remove otherwise impossible stains (like candle wax dye) from an Olefin carpets by using bleach directly on the carpet WITHOUT harming the carpet in any way. (Post again if you want to know why bleach won't harm an Olefin carpet, or any "solution dyed" carpet.)
--
nestork

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