All types of concrete require routine care, whether stamped concrete, decorative, or traditional. Maintenance is vital to concrete’s longevity and beauty because it’s exposed to the elements 24/7, and in Minnesota, the elements are extreme! Of course, your concrete needs a little help to stay strong in the face of all that weather!
Keeping your concrete driveway, patio, stoop, or walkways properly sealed is integral to long-term maintenance. Aside from keeping your concrete investment looking fresh, sealing keeps water from seeping into the concrete and weakening its structural integrity.
While your concrete should have received a good sealing after its installation, you will need to reseal it periodically to keep it looking its best. You could hire a company to do this, but the process is fairly easy to do yourself – plus, you'll save money while you're at it!
Here's a quick breakdown of the DIY concrete resealing process.
How Often to Reseal Concrete Driveways
First, before diving in, know that this task only has to be completed once every five to seven years, depending on the state of your driveway. Penetrating sealer lasts a long time!
That said, no matter how often you reseal with penetrating sealer, it won't change the concrete's appearance. If your concrete looks a little worn, a penetrating sealer will prevent future
stains wear, but it won't change how your structure looks.
Therefore, you may want to try a different route if your concrete appears aged.
The Basics of Resealing Concrete
Before using any resealing product, you should read the directions provided on the container. While we can provide a general overview of the concrete resealing process, a single blog post cannot possibly account for all the individual variations in the products used. No matter which brand or make you choose, adhere to its instructions for the best results!
Now that that's out of the way, here are the basic steps for resealing concrete.
More Isn't Always Better When Resealing Concrete
Concrete resealing is the process of using an applicator to spray or roll over clean and dry concrete. It can be tempting to be very liberal with applying the new sealer – in other words, to spray it on as thick as possible.
More will keep your concrete safer for longer, right? Not quite. Too much sealer can puddle unflatteringly and take a long time to dry. It also can trap moisture near the concrete layer, which can cause the sealer to turn white. Apply the sealer in two thin coats to ensure this doesn't happen.
Here are some other important things to keep in mind!
Protection Is Important for Concrete Resealing
Concrete sealer isn't something you want to get all over yourself. Wear gloves, goggles, long sleeves, and tough boots, even if you don't mind getting messy. It’s for your safety!
Traditional Concrete Is Easier to Reseal Than Stamped
Generally, this is because you won't have to worry about sealer collecting in low points or going too thin on the ridges.
Pressure Wash Your Concrete First
This essential part of the process ensures that no dirt or debris gets trapped as you continue. It will also rid your concrete structure of old, flaky bits of previously applied sealant.
Using your pressure washer should get the job done. However, a scrub brush and some elbow grease can handle any problem areas.
Apply the Sealant With a Sprayer Designed for the Job
Make sure the concrete is dry before you attempt this step, and make sure you pick the right sealant to avoid coating failure. For example, concrete structures treated with water-based concrete sealants should only be resealed with water-based products.
Use as little concrete sealer as possible to get the job done, as too thick a layer can cause both aesthetic and future structural problems.
Wait for the Sealant to Dry
Depending on the concrete sealant used, its drying time will vary. Read the instructions on the product you choose; it should tell you everything you need to know.
Creative Concrete: Top-Notch New Brighton Concrete Company
As a New Brighton 5-star concrete-pouring company, we'd be happy to answer any of your questions about concrete care. Give us a call now at 612-414-7932.