How to stain your boring concrete patio

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If your patio is looking worn, or if you just want a new look, you can stain your concrete floors to give them a new life. Using stain on concrete has the added benefit of allowing the surface to breathe, preventing moisture build-up that can cause cracks and other damage, while also refreshing it. The variety of patterns that you can use is limited only by your taste and imagination – from simple murals to multi-colored murals.

Materials needed to stain concrete floor

To get started, you will need:

You can also choose to use chalk to draw your design if you want to do something complicated, or to lay out your pattern before applying the stain. This will help visualize what it will look like once the pattern is in place and provide a guide for your design.

How to apply stain to concrete floors

First, you need to prepare your floor. Remove any furniture and decorations from the area and sweep up all dust and leaves. Use a hose and scrub brush to remove stubborn dirt and ensure the concrete is clean. After using water to clean the floor, you should let the surface dry for 24 hours so excess moisture doesn’t seep into the stain as it dries.

Once your area is clean and dry, you can apply your dye. Pour some tint into the paint tray and use your paintbrush to cut along any edges and cracks. If you’re working with a pattern, use the brush to make your outlines or any areas that require precision. This will allow for cleaner lines and fewer accidental smudges than using a smudge pad. Once you’ve taken care of all the edges, use the smudging pad to apply the color section by section.

If there are seams or outlined areas in your pattern, do each divided area one at a time so the stain is applied in a single layer and dries evenly. Going over the same area more than once after the stain begins to dry will cause smearing, uneven color, and show streaks and brush strokes.

Keep in mind that concrete will absorb paint at different rates in different areas, and unless the floor is perfectly flat, any dip will collect slightly more stain than other areas. Also, the patches probably won’t come out exactly the same color as the original concrete. Using a thin, even layer of stain without excess or dripping will give you a more even finish, but part of the aesthetic of stained concrete is that you can see the flaws and imperfections of the concrete once it’s finished. If you want a more seamless looking, solid aesthetic, staining is not the right finish for you.

It’s okay to walk on the floor as soon as it’s dry to the touch, but avoid scraping and wetting. Leave your patio empty to dry overnight before putting up furniture and enjoying your new flooring. If you used chalk to outline your pattern, you must allow the stain to dry for at least 24 hours before removing the chalk from the surface.

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