Broom finish, flagstone, color, texture, swirling, and more. All finishes to newly poured concrete. And all finishes anyone can do themselves. Any one particular finishes gives your patio or sidewalk something besides the same kind of look. The questions are, what do you do and how do you take action? However before we get that far, I am assuming you learn how to prepare, form, mix and pour the concrete. If not, go to link resource box for information that’ll assist you. And if you do, read on.
Let’s focus on Broom Finishing. It’s quite simple to do. When the concrete surface is sufficiently set drag a smooth broom or brush lightly throughout 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 must retrowel the surface to remove all traces of the very first finish, wait a few (or more) minutes and rebroom. If you like the design of the broom finish, but think a little something extra in the brooming would look better. Try this. As you drag the broom across the surface of one’s concrete pad move it back and forth sideways only a little. No more than 2 – 3 inches in each direction. Doing that’ll put what is know as a wavy finish to your concrete sidewalk or patio.
Another way to provide your sidewalk or patio an alternative appearance has been a cover or swirling finish. Each is completed by using a wood hand float whilst the concrete is still fairly wet (again trial and error. The swirling look is completed by randomly moving the wood float across the surface in no apparent pattern. It’ll rough up the surface and give it a significantly coarse look. The shell finish is completed in an identical fashion, but house slab installers, instead of the swirling random strokes, a cover pattern is applied. For the shell finish you hold the wood float at first glance of the concrete and move the top of the float from laterally while keeping the underside of the float in one 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 along with your shell pattern. You most likely must 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 few strokes and it should come to you.
Color is without doubt the quickest and easiest thing you are able to do to provide your concrete an alternative look. You can find three methods to color your concrete. The first is to place color in the concrete mix before it is poured in to the forms. The next way is to use it to the surface of the concrete although it is still wet. And the 3rd is staining.
You can get color and stains for concrete just about any lumberyard and do-it-yourself store. None of the three color methods are difficult to do. With the very first you place along with in the concrete mix before it is poured in your forms. In cases like this just follow the directions given with the color. In the next method you spread along with uniformly across the surface of one’s concrete although it is still wet and then use the float to spread it around and in to the concrete. Then finish the concrete as usual. Staining is the last color method. You can find two forms of stain. Regular and semi-transparent and both are applied to new concrete after it’s cured. Regular stain is similar to 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’s a difference. It may be applied in layers. Because the stain is semi-transparent the present surface of one’s concrete sidewalk or patio will show through the very first few layers of stain. The more times you apply the stain to the surface the less the first concrete coloration below will show up. In this example it’s all a matter of preference.
A flagstone pattern finish is just a little trickier compared to others. Here you float as usual and then make the flagstone whilst the concrete is still workable. Get a piece of 1/2 or 3/4″ inch diameter copper pipe and bend it into an S shape. Hold on to one end of the pipe and press one other in to the concrete. Then just pull it throughout the surface. Everything you are wanting to complete is create a falgstone pattern with random geometric shapes at first glance of the concrete. When you have finished with making the flagstone you should refloat the concrete. The final step here’s whether you’ll need a boom finish on top of the flagstone or even a smooth one. For a broom finish you follow the last listed instructions.
Finally there are numerous other effects you are able to give concrete. A leaf finish is certainly distinctive. After floating and troweling just press some leaves into the surface right after troweling. They must be embedded completely, however not covered. Leave them in place before the concrete is placed and then remove them. Other things may be pressed into concrete for patterns too. You possibly can make round impressions in the surface by using cans. What 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 together with concrete.