If you’re looking to refurbish your old patio and bring back some of the vibrancy and life that it once had, look no further. Here are some of the best choices that you can make to return your patio to its former glory and beyond.
An old patio hasn’t reached the end of its life cycle just because it’s cracked, weathered, and riddled with weeds. There are a lot of options for getting it back in good standing and even going above and beyond with a stain or some fresh paint.
Unless your entire slab is hopelessly cracked and in a state of absolute disrepair, it’s worth bringing back and it won’t take much to do it. Staining or painting it are great options but you don’t want to begin there if your patio is full of cracks and the weeds are spilling through.
Caulking Patio Cracks
This is where the process starts and picking the right caulk is important. You’ll need a few important tools before you begin.
- Medium wire brush
- Disposable rag and gloves
- Caulk gun
- Mineral spirits
- Polyurethane caulk
The edges of cracks are often brittle and you’ll want to clean those edges by getting rid of the brittle material first. Caulk is no good if it’s sealed up against a piece of concrete that is brittle and ready to break off.
Use a little bit of the mineral spirits with your medium wire brush to carefully brush the cracks, cleaning it and knocking off the loose edges so that when you caulk it, the polyurethane will be up against and sealing to solid concrete.
Go behind with your rag to clean up any loose debris. Make sure that you wear disposable gloves throughout. You don’t want either the mineral spirits or the caulk on your hands if you can help it.
Slowly fill each crack with the caulk gun, going behind with a spoon or a small scraper to smooth and flatten out the polyurethane caulk. If you encounter cracks that are as wide as a centimeter, you may want to consider using a foam backer rod to help fill the gaps.
You can smooth the caulk into the cracks as you go, bringing the spoon or scraper in afterward to smooth it out and make it look uniform.
Staining A Concrete Patio
Staining is a very aesthetically appealing way to spruce up some concrete and it’s not a difficult process, so long as you’re ready to spend plenty of time down on your knees, cleaning.
If you elect to stain your patio, it needs to be seriously cleaned before you lay down the acid on it.
- Clean and prep
- Stain application
- Neutralize the stain
- Seal the stain in
The cleaning process is more important than the stain. The concrete needs to be immaculate so you should begin with a solid pressure wash throughout. Follow up with a scrub with mild detergent and a soft-bristled brush.
After it’s dry, make sure everything is masked off so that none of the stains gets somewhere that they shouldn’t. Brush on or spray on your first coat, making sure the acid stain is adequately diluted according to manufacturer guidelines.
Apply as many coats as recommended and wait for them to dry before applying the neutralizing coat. Once it’s adequately neutralized, come back over it with a good sealant. It’s probably one of the most interesting looks you’ll ever get out of concrete.
Painting A Concrete Patio
The fastest way to upgrade your patio concrete is to paint it. Of course, you’ll still need to caulk the cracks and thoroughly clean the patio to the same degree as aforementioned with the staining process.
You’ll want an adequate primer and masonry paint for the job. Masonry paint has the binders in its mix that help it expand and contract so that it doesn’t crack over the average of 7 to 10 years that it will last.
Once the caulking and cleaning are out of the way, you’ll want to apply your primer. You’ll prime it with one or two coats according to manufacturer recommendations. The same with the final coats of masonry paint.
Also, the more coats you add, the more vibrant and rich the resulting colour when the paint is finished curing. When the paint is done curing, feel free to hit it with a sealant, which will protect the paint from weather and light impacts while increasing its longevity.
Concrete paint is a very budget-friendly process. You avoid replacing the patio altogether while repairing cracks and other damage through the caulking process and livening up the look with your choice of color.
At The End Of The Day
Refreshing and painting your patio is not an extremely costly endeavor and it can really be a lot of fun. Especially when you can sit back afterward and enjoy the results of your creativity.
Also, taking the time to caulk and smooth out the imperfections, with the added value of the paint or stain, you’ll protect your patio from future moisture intrusion and increase its longevity at the same time.