It is frequently said that a good paint job is 90 percent prep work. The same can be said about prepping the surface of concrete. It is all in the quality of the prep work you do to the surface and surrounding areas before you start your project. 

How do you prep a concrete slab?

Concrete slab patios and driveways get very dirty. Not only do they have dirt and mud tracked over them daily, but they can also have gas, oil, and antifreeze leaked onto them from cars. You will need to remove all debris and contaminants from the concrete before starting your project. 

What type of products are used to prep a concrete slab?

If you are prepping a small area of concrete, you can use general household soaps and warm water to clean the concrete. If you are prepping a larger area, you will want to remove everything with a degreaser recommended for your pressure washer. 

Is pressure washing bad for concrete?

Pressure washers can be used to clean concrete and many other surfaces. Be mindful, however, of the pressure you are using and the proximity to the concrete surface. You could damage the concrete if you get too close to any cracks. 

How long after rainfall can you paint concrete?

Concrete is a very porous material. Unless the concrete is covered by a porch or other roof overhead, you need to wait a minimum of 24 hours for the concrete to dry out completely before painting or staining the surface. 

Is painting concrete a good idea?

Painting the concrete is a great way to not only hide stains but to also add a punch of color to your backyard. You can even find stencils designed to create painted patterns on concrete that resemble bricks, stones, or even lace. Painting concrete is also a personal choice. If you like the look of painted concrete, then go for it. 

Do you need to acid-wash concrete before painting it?

If you have bare concrete that has never been painted or treated, you may want to acid-wash the surface as well. Typically, hydrochloric acid or the milder, muriatic acid are both frequently used to prep concrete surfaces. Be sure to use gloves and keep the area free from children and pets until you are finished. 

Painting or staining concrete starts with concrete surface prep. If you spend the time to a good job from the start, you will be happy with the quality of the finished project.