No one wants to repour their concrete driveway or any other concrete surface that they have. It’s a ton of work and a great deal of expense. Are there cheaper, easier ways to take some warn down concrete and make it look like you just poured it down? Yes! There are a few options that will be much simpler than doing a re-pour. Here is how.
Assess the Level of Damage
Before you get started fixing your old concrete, you have to know if it is a wise idea to use the band-aid solutions we list below. If your concrete is damaged beyond repair, trying to fix it with these methods will just land you in the same spot next year. It may also create safety hazards and do even more damage to your concrete. So, you should only attempt to use these fixes on concrete which is:
- Discolored or aesthetically damaged but otherwise fine
- Has small cracks under ¼ inch wide
- A little bit of material has come loose
- The surface is rough
However, you should not attempt these fixes if:
- Two sides of any crack are different heights
- There are cracks over ¼ inch wide
- The concrete is crumbling
- The concrete is currently unsafe
If not, then you’re all clear to fix the concrete the simple way!
Fill Small Cracks
Whenever you spot a small crack in your concrete, your first step should be to fill it. The longer you leave a crack the more stress it is exposed to, which can make it worse. In particular, rain and fluctuating temperatures, changing seasons, and extreme drought will all make these cracks larger.
When the cracks are under a ¼ inch wide all the way across, you can fill them with more concrete or with a patching compound. There are many options on the market. If you need or want to match the concrete mix exactly, you’ll likely have to talk to your concrete contractor. However, that’s normally unnecessary.
Use a Resurfacing Product
You can purchase a resurfacing product for your concrete. This is like a thick paint that you apply in a thin, even layer to the top of the concrete to give it a new finish. It naturally smooths out small bumps or inconsistencies. Many of the products also have aesthetic finishes. They are available in a wide range of colors and patterns.
It is always best to read the specific instructions for the product you’ve chosen to make sure you understand the installation process. But, one important tip is that when temperatures are high, above 90 degrees Fahrenheit, you may need to regularly mist the surface of the concrete with water in order to make sure that the resurfacing product cures properly.
Prime and Paint
If your concrete surface is relatively smooth, you have other options beyond resurfacers. Some people prefer to prime and paint their concrete. You have to ensure that the primers and paint you’re using are specifically for exterior concrete in order to get lasting results.
Remember: Curb Appeal can Pay For Itself
According to Bankrate.com, good curb appeal can boost the selling price of your home by as much as 7%. This doesn’t just apply to your landscaping: the quality of your driveway, walkways, and patios can also play a big role.