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How To Stain Concrete The Right Way

Stained and colored concrete at a merced home

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Staining the concrete around your home can add a beautiful and unique look to your patio,  driveway and other areas around your home. It’s also a durable and economical way to ensure that your concrete surfaces will look spectacular for many years to come. Here’s how to stain your concrete. 

Need To Know Before You Start Staining Your Concrete

There are two ways to stain your concrete. The first is with acid-staining acrylic and the second is by using water-based concrete stain. Acid staining is going to last longer and look better than water-based. However, an acid stain can be a little bit of a wildcard. The way that your acid stain colors your concrete is through a chemical reaction. So the results can vary depending on the concrete composition, age, and location. I

Prepare Your Surface

Before undertaking any concrete staining project, make sure to prepare the surface by removing any oil, adhesive, paint, and other debris. Clean your concrete thoroughly with TSP and water and if you have any stains that aren’t budging, use a degreaser or paint stripper. It’s also a good idea to use a pressure washer to blast dirt off your concrete and out of the pores. 

A few important notes. First, your new concrete needs to be at least 4 weeks old prior to treating and staining. Avoid using other acids to clean the concrete as it could remove minerals and cause color fluctuations. 

Designate The Area 

Tape off any areas that you do not want to be stained. Take your time during this process as the tape needs to be perfect since you won’t be able to remove the stain after the fact. Both masking take and duct tape work well for this purpose. 

Test The Stain

Prior to applying the stain in your main areas, test it in an inconspicuous area to ensure the color is what you’re looking for. 

Stain Your Concrete

Now that you have the right color and the areas have been appropriately prepped, it’s time to stain your concrete. Your goal is to apply your stain as evenly as possible so you might want to use a sprayer to evenly coat your concrete. For smaller areas, you can use a brush or roller to apply an even coat of stain. Make sure that you do not have so much stain that it’s puddling in any area. If this happens, use your wet/dry shop vacuum to remove the excess stain.  

Give It Time To Dry 

Your stain will tell you how long you should allow for proper drying and setting on the label. Some stains are faster drying than others so be sure to check the recommendation on the label and follow those instructions.

Seal Your Concrete 

Once the concrete stain has settled and looks like you want it to look, apply a coat of concrete sealer to the surface area. The label on your concrete stain will often recommend the best type of sealant to use for your stain. Follow these instructions and you’ll have a beautiful stained concrete that will look good for many years. 

Call The Concrete Staining Professionals 

If staining your own concrete seems like a daunting task, call the team at AM Construction & Concrete of Merced, CA. Our experts have stamped and stained hundreds of concrete surfaces and we can stain yours to get the look you want and make sure it’s done right from the beginning to end. 

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