I have a small sidewalk I am working on. The other sidewalks have the
pea gravel & concrete look formed by washing off the concrete before
How do I know and when is the right time to wash off the top layer of
concrete to expose the mixed-in pea gravel?
I was told to wait an hour afterwards. Use a garden hose and broad
broom to lightly remove the concretre.
Any other suggestions? Some have suggested a concrete retardent, but
I could not find any at Home Depot!
Some have suggested a concrete supplier, but said that they carry it
in a 5 gal bucket. Others said that it is not necessary for a small
Any other things I should know??
Or two. . . or 20 minutes. It depends on how wet you mix was, how
humid the day is- and what the temp is. Just be forewarned. If
this is your first try you might want to do a test batch and make some
portable stepping stones. [I have a form I built that makes 3
12x12x2 'pavers'. I dump the leftover concrete from a 'real job' in
these squares- sometimes 1, 2, or all 3] They come in handy
sometimes, and make me feel like I'm not wasting anything.
Don't over wet it- it is an art.
I agree you don't need retardant.
Did you prepare the base well? Are you allowing for expansion?
How big is 'small'?
I did some exposed aggregate a while ago. One thing you will want to
do is to use the aggregate you want exposed, not what comes from the
concrete plant. Around here concrete is mixed with crushed shell and I
wanted pea gravel. I broadcast the gravel I wanted while the concrete
was still wet and floated it in. When the concrete had hardened to the
point that you couldn't deform it with your finger, almost hard enough
to walk on, I sprayed it with a nozzle with a soft spray and lightly
brushed it to expose the aggregate with a soft floor broom (not the
hard garage floor type broom) I let that rest until it was a little
harder and cleaned it up with a grout sponge. On a fairly hot Florida
day this whole process was over in 4 hours. If you are up north that
may be more like 6.
The aggregate will tend to clean up more as time goes by so don't go
crazy cleaning it and screw up the substrate. About a month later you
can use a pressure washer to really clean it up.
Yep, some people go to power wash their driveway and sidewalk, and after a
few times they blast the fines right out of the top layer of their cement.
It would probably look better if the aggregate was intended to be visible.
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