Stamped concrete is a low-maintenance and stunning choice for patios, walkways, pool decks, and driveways. Here are some great suggestions for how to clean stamped concrete and also some stamped concrete maintenance tips to keep your stamped concrete feature looking beautiful for 25 years or more.
How to Clean Stamped Concrete Stains?
Stains happen. Here’s how to clean stamped concrete when you have different types of stains:
- Water Stains – Stains from water trapped underneath potted plants can be treated by scrubbing with a combination of mild dish soap and water. Or dry detergent sprinkled on and left to sit for 10 minutes will work for cleaning stamped concrete with tougher stains.
- Grease, Oils – Scrubbing with a mixture of dish soap and water is how to clean stamped concrete when you have stains from grease or oils.
- Rust – Cleaning stamped concrete that has rust stains is accomplished by soaking the stain in distilled white vinegar for a few hours. Scrub then rinse.
- Mildews – Use this mildewcide recipe from the U.S. Department of Agriculture of 1-quart chlorine bleach, 3 quarts water, and ⅓ cup laundry detergent to fight mildew stains. Scrub it in, let it sit (don’t let it dry), then rinse. *We don’t recommend using bleach on stamped concrete*
Stamped Concrete Maintenance Schedule
Since stamped concrete is flat and continuous, it won’t shift or accumulate dirt and water as easily as bricks or stone. Traffic and the elements can make your stamped concrete dirty or damage it, so it is a good idea to do some regular stamped concrete maintenance.
Clearing Stamped Concrete As needed. Clearing stamped concrete promptly is always a good idea to prevent dirt and debris from settling into the surface pattern and to extend its life. Use a push broom or other brushes that do not have metal bristles as those can damage stamped concrete.
Cleaning Stamped Concrete – Twice a year at a minimum and as needed. How often your stamped concrete needs to be cleaned really depends on the amount of traffic it receives and other factors. Cleaning stamped concrete before and after winter is recommended since salt and chemicals from roads cling to your car and are particularly damaging. Fortunately learning how to clean stamped concrete is easy:
- Rinse the surface with a garden hose on high pressure or a pressure washer on a low setting.
- Then apply a small amount of dish soap with a push broom.
- Rinse again thoroughly.
Tip: Avoid cleaning stamped concrete with bleaches and harsh chemicals which can discolor and degrade the stamped pattern.
Resealing Stamped Concrete – Every 2-3 years. Resealing your stamped concrete with a quality sealant is a crucial part of stamped concrete maintenance which protects it from stains and damage as well as keeping the color vibrant and the pattern intact. Resealing more often than that can cause sealant buildup which can make the surface look dull. However, excessive UV rays, heavier than normal traffic, and more frequent freeze and thaw cycles can make some stamped concrete surfaces require resealing sooner than others, so consult your stamped concrete expert for more advice. Tip: Use the same brand and type of sealant every time to avoid conflicting formulations and follow the manufacturer’s instructions.
Helpful Hints for Stamped Concrete Winter Maintenance
Winter is harsh on all surfaces, but with a little stamped concrete maintenance and by using the right tools when clearing or cleaning stamped concrete, you can protect your surface so it stands the test of time.
- Clear it Quickly – The freeze/ thaw cycle is very harmful to stamped concrete and most surfaces. Removing snow and ice promptly is one of the best things you can do to preserve your stamped concrete.
- Use a Plastic Shovel – Metal shovels can damage the stamped pattern on your concrete. Use plastic shovels and tools to remove snow and debris.
- Avoid Salt and Chemical De-icers – Salt and chemicals wreak havoc on your stamped concrete. Kitty litter or sand are good alternatives to salt if you want to prevent slips and falls and add traction to an area.
- Watch Where you Park – You and your guests’ cars may track salt and chemicals from roads onto your stamped concrete driveway. Consider wiping your car tires and undercarriage before parking.
We hope you’ve learned some great tips on how to clean stamped concrete as well as the basics of stamped concrete maintenance. Morrison Custom Concrete, Inc. specializes in high-quality stamped concrete with long-lasting Solomon colors and Brickform stamps. Contact us to learn more.