A home we're considering has a stamped concrete drive, sidewalk
and atrium. The concrete was either colored when poured or given
an acid dye afterward, then sealed with a clear topping. The
concrete is about 5-6 years old and the color has faded some and
there's also a white "lime"-type of deposit on some areas.
If we end up buying the place, my plan is to pressure wash the
concrete well and then apply a clear sealer designed for concrete.
However, if the concrete itself still looks bad after pressure
washing, I might be tempted to try a coat of dye.
Can someone with experience in this area share their advice or
experience in rejuvenating a stamped concrete exterior surface?
I had a stamped concrete patio poured here in NJ about 13 years ago.
At the time I also considered pavers, but went with the stamped for a
number of reasons. There are a couple of things they don't tell you
about stamped concrete. One of them is that it needs to be re-sealed
every 2 years, at least with the weather here in NJ. The second is,
eventually the top color that gives it the distinctive color will
eventually wear off and you are left with the remaining color of the
concrete. That is not the color of concrete, but the color of the
concrete plus the color added while it's in the mixer. When they
pour it, first color bags go in the concrete truck and get blended
in. Then they apply a powder to the surface and do the stamping.
It's that last color step that gives it a varying color that looks
like stone, etc. And eventually that is the part that wears off.
I eventually sand blasted mine and went with a solid color stain from
either HD or Lowes, followed by sealer and am generally satisfied with
the result. But, it now is one solid color as opposed to the more
appealing variation look and obviously that isn't permanent either.
It's lasted about 2 years so far.
Your plan to power wash and re-seal is sound. Just don't over do it
with the PW, as it also has the potential to remove some of that
surface color that you want to keep. As for sealer, I HIGHLY
recommend using Kure N Seal, which is an organic solvent based
product. It gives it a gloss look, which hopefully is what you
want. That is the product that the guys who did the job used and it
lasts longer and looks better than any of the water based sealers that
you find in the typical box store. I apply it with an 18" roller and
it goes down easy. The harder part is the prep work.
What you describe is calcium leeching into the drive.
Check for any nearby irrigation leak in the landscape or sprinklers -
Here the stamped drives are poured with dye from the cement company
and then stamped using rubber pads.
Be carefull of sealers, many make it slippery when wet, and I dont
think you can stain after a sealer. Wet is how it will look sealed so
just see if you are happy with its color when wet. Ive seen color
mixed in concrete and color or treatment sprayed on, ask the previous
owner what he did and get out a pro. I would not experiment or "learn"
on this. The white is Efloresence and can be a headache
Nonny, I assume you are talking about an acid stained surface.
Any treatment will need to be over the entire area . I'm sure you
could try a limited area, but I'm sure you would want to do the
whole thing for a more uniform look. There is a new acetone based
dye that might work quite well, though I have not used it yet.
Any sealer will need periodic retreatment.
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