Is your old cement driveway, patio or garage floor stained and dingy looking? No matter how nice the exterior of your home is, if you have an oil-stained driveway or sidewalk, your home will appear run down. Your driveway and exterior concrete surfaces are part of the design of your home. They do impact curb appeal.
Years ago, when a cement driveway or patio started to show signs of aging, a bulldozer or jackhammer were the only options for repair. Unfortunately, many homeowners don’t realize that these are not the only options anymore. Thanks the new cement stains and epoxies, there are many more practical ways to renew a concrete surface, such as concrete overlays and cement paint.
For exterior concrete, you can use a concrete overlay system that is applied over existing concrete. A concrete overlay is an affordable way to give your cement a brand new life. This versatile material can be installed in a variety of colors and patterns. Overlays can be used to replicate stone, slate, tile or brick. Concrete overlays are ideal for both commercial and residential properties. Here are some of their benefits:
- Low-maintenance – Overlays last a long time and they don’t require hardly any upkeep.
- Attractive – They are available in a variety of colors and textures.
- Resists sun damage – Protects against harmful UV rays.
- Covers up impurities and imperfections in the cement.
- Resistant to salt, chemicals and abrasions.
Requires minimal downtime – Concrete overlays restores surfaces very quickly. This is especially beneficial for commercial properties. These systems cure very fast and can support foot traffic within a short period of time.
Concrete overlays can be used for a variety of projects, including:
- Pool decks
- Hotel lobbies
- Retail stores
Are there any projects that are not ideal for overlays?
In order for cement to be restored with an overlay, it must not have any major structural defects. Additionally, the sub-base should be stable. Minor cracks are okay but larger cracks should be repaired first. Additionally, it is very important that the cement be prepared correctly first. This helps the overlay or coating properly bond to the surface. Preparation includes:
Examining the surface for structural flaws – If the cement is weak, the current layer must be removed down to solid concrete.
The surface should be thoroughly cleaned and acid etched if needed.
Because of the importance of preparation, we recommended a professional application when it comes to installing a concrete overlay.
For interior concrete, such as garages and commercial offices, you have several options for renewing concrete.
Cement paint – You can use cement paint on interior concrete surfaces. Cement paint will improve the appearance but a major disadvantage is that it often doesn’t last very long. Cement paint usually begins cracking after a short period of time. Cement paint also doesn’t stand up well to grease and oil stains.
Epoxy stains or coatings – Epoxy coatings are a better option than cement paint when it comes to interior concrete surfaces. These coatings are durable and attractive. They usually last a lot longer than regular cement paint. An epoxy coating is a good way to breathe a new life into a worn out garage floor.
Concrete overlay – Concrete overlays can also be applied to garage floors. These products are often used for professional garages or on commercial interiors. They are preferred over cement paint because they are durable, long-lasting, affordable and attractive.
There are many options for renewing tired exterior and interior concrete, such as cement paint and overlays.