Stamped Concrete is a process where an area is framed, re-bar is placed in the frame, concrete is poured and while the concrete is in a plastic state, it is colored and stamped.
Stamped Concrete is usually poured 4 inches deep. A color hardener is added to achieve a base color. The color hardener also hardens the surface of the concrete to give the surface better abrasion and wear resistance. After the hardener is applied, a powdered release is applied. The powdered release will provide the antiquing color in your stamped patio/deck. Additional colors can be added. When considering a new patio, or expanding an existing patio, this is most likely the best option.
Acid Stained Concrete is a cost effective, durable and beautiful alternative. It is gaining popularity as a low
maintenance, economic, and attractive floor finish. For interior applications, there are many colors and options that can customize the floor for the owner.
Acid Stained Floors are created by applying a mixture of acid, water and inorganic salts to concrete. The variation in the density, porosity and water retention of the concrete is what creates the beautiful colors and marbling of Acid Stained concrete.
It is low maintenance, and has a low initial installation cost. Every Acid Stain application is unique. Differences in the surface texture, chemical content of the concrete, and environmental conditions
provide for a unique outcome every time. There are many variations and options to pick from when the Acid Staining is performed. The concrete can be scored with a tile pattern, diamond pattern or custom patterns. A stencil may be applied during the concrete staining process, resulting in complex, beautiful patterns. We can also emboss stencils into the stained concrete. In our climate we do not recommend overlays in outdoor applications.
Adding to the value of decorative stamped concrete is the material's inherent strength and endurance. Like conventional concrete, stamped concrete will provide decades of service when properly installed and maintained, even when exposed to harsh winter weather conditions.
In some cases, stamped concrete can be even more durable than standard concrete, especially if a color hardener has been applied to the surface. The hardener does more than simply impart color. It also makes the surface stronger and more resistant to abrasion and water penetration. Most contractors will also apply several coats of protective sealer to stamped concrete to block the penetration of dirt, de-icing chemicals, oil and grease stains, and other substances. A good-quality sealer not only makes the concrete easier to clean, it offers other benefits, such as enhancing the color and preventing fading from UV exposure.
Stamped Concrete Maintenance Tips
Even properly sealed stamped concrete will require some routine maintenance, depending on exposure conditions and the type and amount of traffic it receives. Here are tips for cleaning and treating your stamped concrete to preserve its beauty and extend its service life
Although a sealer will inhibit stains, you should still sweep and wash the surface occasionally to avoid dirt buildup. Exterior surfaces can be pressure washed or scrubbed with a mild detergent. For interior surfaces, wet mopping or dry dust mopping of the floor is typically the only routine upkeep needed.
On outdoor stamped concrete, avoid using deicing salts, especially during the first winter after the pavement is installed. Sealers for decorative concrete often fail in areas where de-icing salts are applied or that receive drip-off from parked cars.
If the stamped surface begins to dull or lose its sheen after time, recoating with sealer will usually restore the luster. We are happy to recomend or provide you with the best sealers available depending on your site conditions.
On stamped interior floors subject to lots of foot traffic, it’s especially important to maintain the sealed surface to prevent wear patterns. Application of a sacrificial floor wax or polish can provide extra protection by protecting the sealer from wear and serving as a shock absorber to scuffs, scratches and grime.