Broom finish, flagstone, color, texture, swirling, and more. All finishes to newly poured concrete. And all finishes everyone can do themselves. Any some of those finishes can give your patio or sidewalk something besides the same kind of look. The questions are, what would you do and how do you get it done? However before we get that far, I’m assuming you understand how to prepare, form, mix and pour the concrete. If not, visit link resource box for information that will assist you. And should you, read on.
Let’s focus on Broom Finishing. It’s fairly simple to do. Once the concrete surface is sufficiently set drag a smooth broom or brush lightly over the concrete. For even less texture wait before the surface has further hardened. With concrete the timing is important. If your initial brooming left too heavy a finish you will have to retrowel the top to remove all traces of the first finish, wait a couple of (or more) minutes and rebroom. If you want the look of the broom finish, but think a little extra in the brooming would look better. Try this. As you drag the broom across the top of your concrete pad move it back and forth sideways only a little. No more than 2 – 3 inches in each direction. Doing that will put what is know as a wavy finish to your concrete sidewalk or patio.
Another way to offer your sidewalk or patio a different appearance has been a layer or swirling finish. Each is performed using a wood hand float whilst the concrete continues to be fairly wet (again trial and error. The swirling look is performed by randomly moving the wood float across the top in no apparent pattern. It will rough up the top and give it a significantly coarse look. The shell finish is performed in an identical fashion, but, instead of the swirling random strokes, a layer pattern is applied. For the shell finish you support the wood float on top of the concrete and move the the top of float from laterally while keeping the underside of the float in one single place. Then move the float right close to your first shell and do another (again trial and error. Keep this up before the entire surface has been covered with your shell pattern. You probably will have to make several attempts at this before you are satisfied with how it looks. Don’t get discouraged when it doesn’t look’right’at first. Just practice a couple of strokes and it will come to you.
Color is without doubt the quickest and easiest thing you can certainly do to offer your concrete a different look. There are three ways to color your concrete façade cleaning. The very first is to put color in the concrete mix before it is poured to the forms. The next way is to use it to the top of the concrete although it continues to be wet. And the next is staining.
You can aquire color and stains for concrete at just about any lumberyard and do it yourself store. None of the three color methods are difficult to do. With the first you put along with in the concrete mix before it is poured in your forms. In this instance just follow the directions given with the color. In the next method you spread along with uniformly across the top of your concrete although it continues to be wet and then use the float to spread it around and to the concrete. Then finish the concrete as usual. Staining is the final color method. There are two types of stain. Regular and semi-transparent and both are placed on new concrete after it’s cured. Regular stain is much like paint. It goes on and covers completely. Semi-transparent stain goes for a passing fancy way (use a paintbrush, a spray can, a roller, I saw one completed with a mop and it looked pretty good), but there is a difference. It may be applied in layers. Because the stain is semi-transparent the present surface of your concrete sidewalk or patio will show through the first few layers of stain. The more times you apply the stain to the top the less the original concrete coloration below will show up. In this situation it’s all a matter of preference.
A flagstone pattern finish is a little trickier compared to others. Here you float as usual and then make the flagstone whilst the concrete continues to be workable. Get an item of 1/2 or 3/4″ inch diameter copper pipe and bend it into an S shape. Keep one end of the pipe and press another to the concrete. Then just pull it over the surface. That which you are wanting to complete is produce a falgstone pattern with random geometric shapes on top of the concrete. After you have finished with making the flagstone you will have to refloat the concrete. The ultimate step here’s whether you will want boom finish on the top of flagstone or a smooth one. For a broom finish you follow the prior listed instructions.
Finally there are many other effects you can give concrete. A leaf finish is certainly distinctive. After floating and troweling just press some leaves into the top right after troweling. They should be embedded completely, although not covered. Leave them in place before the concrete is set and then remove them. Other items may be pressed into concrete for patterns too. You can make round impressions in the top by utilizing cans. Whatever you believe might will leave a stylish mark on the concrete is worth considering. Give it a try.
One finish I didn’t discuss is exposed aggregate. I think it would be too hard for a person with limited or no previous experience working with concrete.