How Does Concrete Get Dirty And What Can Be Done To Fix It?
Unsightly concrete can be a major source of frustration for homeowners and business owners. It is one of the most popular surfaces found in both residential and commercial properties and therefore should look as good as possible.
Concrete can become dirty in many different ways. In addition to dirt, the surface can also become discolored from oil or grease stains, dark from rust or scraping with metal tools, or even stained from liquids such as coffee, wine, and fruit juices.
Fortunately, there are a variety of ways to clean dirty concrete surfaces at home without any major hassle. From simple techniques like prevention and using cleaner products, all the way to more involved solutions like installing a new driveway or porch. Below we’ll cover some of the easier methods to cleaning your concrete.
How To Clean Your Concrete With A Pressure Washer
Pressure washers are awesome power tools that can be used to clean a variety of surfaces, including and especially concrete. They work by spraying water at high pressure onto the concrete and pushing dirt and grime away from the surface.
An effective pressure washer will need to be used with caution when cleaning concrete though. To avoid damaging the surface, it is important to keep the water temperature below 60 degrees Fahrenheit (15 Celsius) and test the pressure in an inconspicuous area to ensure it doesn’t damage the surface.
To clean your concrete using a pressure washer:
- First, remove debris from the area with a leaf blower or broom.
- Degrease the surface using a degreaser (you can find at Home Depot). This will break down grease and start to loosen up the stains.
- Get your pressure washer turned on and test in an inconspicuous area.
- Once you have it dialed into the right settings, work your way from the top down in the direction that the water flows.
- Rinse the concrete by turning your pressure washer into a lower power mode.
- Seal the concrete to prevent future stains.
How To Safely Remove Mold From Concrete
It’s common to get mold on concrete patios in shaded and damp areas. These mold spores can work their way into the pores of your concrete and create unsightly stains. Fortunately, there are a number of ways to clean it from your concrete.
First, you can buy a mold-killing solution designed for outdoor use. This is pretty simple to use, just follow the directions on the bottle and use a brush to scrub the concrete to help remove the stains. After killing the mold, you may still have stains. In this scenario, you can often use a bleach solution to help lift even more of the stains. once complete, rinse the area thoroughly and then seal your concrete to prevent future mold growth.
Best Way to Remove Rust Stains From Concrete
Stubborn rust stains can be hard to remove, but there are some techniques that will help you get the job done.
The best choice will depend on the age of the stain and what type of stain remover is being used. If you have really stubborn rust stains on your concrete, you’ll need to use an acid-based remover like vinegar or lemon juice. If these don’t work, you may need to use a stronger solution like hydrochloric acid or trisodium phosphate mixed with water. Be careful if you use hydrochloric acid as this can turn concrete blue. To try to prevent this, you can mix two parts of acid with one part of water. Also, be sure to use proper safety equipment.
To remove the rust stains, first, clean the stain with soap and water to remove any surface staining and debris.
Next, pour the undiluted lemon juice or vinegar on the stain and scrub with a wire brush. This should remove the stain but if it’s stubborn, you’ll need to use the stronger acids.
Once the stains are removed, clean the area with water and seal to prevent future stains.
Need New Concrete Work?
Reach out to the professionals at AM Construction & Concrete in Merced. We do concrete work for commercial and residential projects throughout the Central Valley. We have the team, expertise, and knowledge to do any concrete work that you need. Give us a call today for a free quote or to ask a question.