4 Tips On How To Fix Common Discoloration Issues On Concrete
It happens all the time that despite the contractor’s best efforts, there will always be minor issues with concrete due to application methods, curing time, ingredient mixing and weather conditions. Even when a professional contractor can provide you with a smooth and even finished result, but sometimes discoloration problems may occur in the concrete no matter what, and you’ll be stuck with having to fix those small imperfections yourself.
Flushing And Scrubbing
Before using any chemicals, first, do a flush and scrub. Flushing is when the surface of the concrete slab is flooded with hot water and then rigorously scrubbed with a hard brush. For minor discolorations, this can be repeated several times until the concrete breathed in and the water is evaporated. This process assists with evenly distributing any sort of mineral build-up or moisture which is trapped within the concrete surface and causing discoloration.
For more severe discoloration that doesn’t go away with flushing, you can apply a gentle solution of muriatic acid. You should never use more than one percent of the acid solution with water and only increase the amount if you fail to notice any significant change after your first round. To steer clear of ruining the surface of the concrete, avoid going above five percent solution. To further ensure that the acid does not penetrate further than the surface layer, make sure you flood the concrete beforehand. Apply the acid solution onto the concrete and scrub with a scrubbing brush. After every scrub down session, the surface needs to be rinsed with clean water no later than fifteen minutes.
Applying Concrete Stain
If the acid solution is not doing the trick, then your only other option is applying a chemical top coat. Concrete staining is the next reasonable option, as a concrete surface can be stained just like a wooden surface. Make sure you’re using a paint roller or paintbrush and test a small unsightly area in advance. Always begin with a shade that is two or three tints lighter than the finished result you’re looking for. The reason being, you can never lighten a stain. Only additional layers can be added to acquire darker coats. That’s why it’s best to rather start with a lighter shade and work your way up by applying darker tints until you’ve achieved the desired result.
Another excellent way of hiding imperfections is by adding a tinted sealer. Just like you can use topcoat sealants on natural stone areas to protect the stone material as well as giving it a somewhat different color, the same goes for concrete surfaces.
This option is only useful for wide open spaces such as a driveway. Another thing is to keep in mind while coloration is thickness. The concrete driveway thickness is going to depend on the type of use it will have. A residential driveway will not have the same heavy loads as a commercial or industrial driveway which tend to have lots of truck traffic and a higher volume of vehicles. where the discoloration is minor since the top coats are translucent and will end up showing excessive streaking or blotchiness. To achieve the best results, you can apply a sealer after you’ve finished putting on the concrete stain which is great for blending the two layers.