While baking soda will neutralize the acid that runs off into the soil, more
than likely soil itself and the concrete you cleaned with it (assumption)
can do the job just as well. Most of the chlorine comes off as gas and some
gets converted into salts. In the long term its safe but in the short term
it will kill bugs and grass
For what gets soaked into the concrete, use ammonia after it dries and you
wash it first. Do this especially if you plan to seal it particularly
acrylic surface sealer (as opposed to a penetrating sealer).
Muriatic is not the best for concrete, it will etch quite well but the fumes
are bad and it can penetrate leaving oily looking spots which defy cleaning
with just water and soap (hence my comment about sealers). I have to admit
it is far cheaper and generally more aggressive than other products so in
general a good choice.
We used muriatic to etch concrete prior to sealing. Just washed off
with plain water, as, I'm sure,
the instructions said we should. This was 2nd floor deck, with concrete
walks, plants, and structural
walls near. No effect on surrounding area. Dilute acid will probably
help the lawn :o)
Be cautious about using ammonium hydroxide to neutralize hydrochloric
acid. It will do the job, but if there is much HCl you may find all
surfaces covered with a white film...ammonium chloride. This is
harmless, it's called washing soda sometimes, but it makes a mess.
If you have the dilution ratio right the acid should be neutral before
it comes off the concrete. Unless you really want to be exposing the
aggregrate you will be using 20:1 or so. It is better to use more of a
dilute solution and a little time than to try to get it all at once
with concentrate. The fumes and danger will be less too
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