Concrete is one of the most popular surfaces for commercial and residential use in College Park Georgia. Because of its durability and low maintenance, homemakers prefer it to other outdoor surface materials.
However, like everything else that is constantly exposed to adverse weather conditions, concrete deteriorates over time. Since you first installed the concrete, it looked positively new. After a few years, what was once shiny gray surface had turned into a dull, monotonous gray.
Other than tearing out the whole concrete surface and replacing it with a new one (which can be an expensive endeavor, not to mention physically taxing), your other option is patio concrete staining. Hiring a professional decorative concrete contractor in College Park to repair and resurface the concrete if it needs it is well worth the money.
Once the concrete is ready for its first application you have to choose from either acid stains or acrylic stains. Both can greatly enhance the appearance of your concrete surfaces. However, each stain type has its own character and distinction from the other, so it is best if you get to know what the strong and weak points of each type are before making a decision.
What makes outdoor concrete staining using acid stains unique is that every acid type reacts different to the free lime. So you can create different effects, producing an illusion of variety on your surfaces.
The other type of stain used for outdoor concrete staining is acrylic. Because acrylic stains are water-based, the pigments tend to enter through the pores of the concrete surface. In this way, the color, which is characteristically semi-translucent adheres to the concrete in a way that acid stains never do, creating a more lasting and consistent coloring.
The good thing about acrylic stains for outdoor concrete staining is that they can mask any flaws or inconsistencies in the surface. Acid stains, on the other hand, tend to accentuate them.
Repairing Broken Concrete
One form of decorative concrete is to use bands of decorative concrete around areas of flat and non decorative concrete. How big these bands of concrete are will depend on the size of the concrete area as a whole, and what you want the area to look like. Basically when it comes to bands it can be one of any style of decorative concrete: stamped, exposed aggregate, colored concrete, salt finish, etc.
Another form of decorative concrete is concrete with broom finishes. Broom finishes can be light broom or coarse depending on the bristles of the broom you choose. While unlike many forms of decorative concrete, this is not a fancy finish but provides a non-slip surface, so it is a very functional decorative concrete. You shouldn't just use any broom for this type of decorative concrete, rather choose brooms specifically made for this purpose.
Colored Concrete is a very popular form of decorative concrete. There are two basic forms of colored concrete. It can be placed within the mix or can be a dry shake that is dusted on the top of the concrete.
A rock slat finish is another popular form of decorative concrete. This is a cool technique because it is nothing really scientific, it is pretty basic. What is generally done is a basic water softener salt crystals that is about 1/8" to 3/8" in size are pretty much smoothed onto fresh concrete, and a roller of some sort is then used to press the salt crystals into the concrete. Once the concrete is dried, the surface is washed, dissolving the salt and leaving small holes.
There are several other forms of decorative concrete as well. Basically your imagination is the limit, and you can even make your current concrete into decorative concrete, which can improve your property value in [post_name], and make your living areas more beautiful.
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Repairing broken concrete can require some heavy equipment and good strong labor depending on how large the area is that needs to be repaired. This example will be based on a badly damaged driveway or perhaps garage floor. If you do not have a truck available to haul away the damaged concrete, a dumpster may be the cheapest means of removal from the site. Many carters will provide a twenty cubic yard for this debris as long as only pure concrete is placed in the dumpster. The carters trucks can easily lift a dumpster that size filled to water level and they can resell the broken concrete to a local landfill for roads or someone using it for fill materials. Reinforcing bars and wire must be removed as much as possible and absolutely no household garbage of any kind is allowed.
Concrete floors and driveways will require the use of a jack hammer to break the concrete into workable sized pieces. Small areas may be done with an electric hammer but thick reinforced slabs and large areas are going to require the use of an air compressor driven hammer or hammers.
Rental shops will have a tow behind unit, hoses and hammers with bits. Ninety pound hammers are the best but they are a bear to handle. Sixty pound hammers are available but of course will not do the work of the bigger hammers. The larger the jack hammer, the faster the demolition work will proceed. Always wear eye and hearing protection when operating a jack hammer. Start by cracking the concrete at the furthest edge of work area away from the dumpster. You will then be able to run the wheelbarrow over a fairly smooth surface to the dumpster instead of over broken concrete or rough ground. If you are repairing or replacing only a portion of the concrete slab you will need to saw cut the slab before removal of the damaged concrete can begin. Using a cut-off saw with a concrete cutting blade, and as neatly as possible, cut a square around the damaged area. Try to penetrate all the way through the slab if possible. Cutting through will sever any reinforcing bars or wire mesh in the slab making removal of the debris much easier.
If you have some latex adhesive made for patching concrete you can paint the exposed face of the slab about one hour before you pour the new concrete. Just minutes before pouring the new concrete, wet the soil below the slab to prevent premature drying of the new concrete. Dry earth will suck all the water out of the fresh concrete much too quickly causing the concrete to shrink.
Pouring the concrete is the easiest and most rewarding part of the job. Once poured, try to prevent the fresh concrete from drying too quickly by placing a tarp over the area for shade or once set and finished, by keeping water over the area for a few days. Wet burlap works great and is easy to soak with a hose. Avoiding premature drying will prevent the patch from shrinking it's edges away from the existing floor edges, leaving an unsightly patch job.