Maintaining and Resealing Decorative Surfaces
For those who have a decorative concrete product each spring is the best time to inspect and perform an annual assessment of the overall health of your surface. The cleaning and sealing of such areas should be done on a regular basis just like any other home maintenance. This could include cleaning, patching, coloring as well as resealing. Taking notice of simple problems will help prolong your surface and protect you from more serious issues and costly repairs. The frequency will depend on how high a traffic area to cars, foot traffic, water and any chemicals the area may be exposed to. We recommend frequent cleaning and resealing every 2-3 years especially when you notice the color to slightly fade.
The best way to start your annual inspection is with a good overall cleaning. This can be done by pre-washing exterior surfaces with a 2000psi power washer to remove all dirt and grime. You can then mix a common household cleaner such as simple green and scrub surface. Rinse area clean and let dry. We prefer a leaf blower immediately after rinsing to remove all excess water and debris from settling back into surface. When cleaning interior surfaces we recommend the frequent use of a household sweeper to keep debris from being ground into surface. To further remove any residue or stains use a small steam vacuum . Be sure surface is completely dried to eliminate water spots especially on smoother surfaces. Once a year the investment of a professional steam extraction process similar to cleaning carpets will do the best job to remove all dirt and contaminants especially with a stone epoxy surface. If there are any remaining stains additional cleaning with solvents or even removing the existing sealer may be necessary. Be sure and test the area or contact us prior to exposing entire surface. Any cracks larger than a credit card can and should be filled with approved sealant to prevent excess moisture penetration and further separation.
Don’t make the assumption that all decorative surfaces need to be resealed automatically after 2-3 years. Resealing too often only adds more sealer where it is not needed and can itself create a delaminating failure. Sealer life span will vary based on sealer type, environmental conditions and traffic patterns. We recommend solvent-based sealers which have greater protection and longevity with much better adhesion when resealing. Most sealers will start to look slightly gray or off-white as they are coming to the end of their working life. When applying new sealer always strive for coating at a minimum of 400sf per gallon as thinner coats are always better.
Contact us today to join our maintenance program or to answer any further questions. Maintaining and cleaning your surface is the easiest way to protect your investment for many years of enjoyment.