Enhance Your Home's Concrete Surfaces
"With decorative concrete, the
opportunities are endless!"
Welcome to the new All Things Concrete.com
If you arrived here because you're looking for information to plan a concrete project or you're a do-it-yourselfer gutsy enough to tackle one, this site was built with you in mind. I don't know everything there is to know about concrete, but I've learned enough over the years and I'm happy to share it with others.
Decorative concrete is showing up in many facets in and around the home. Concrete stains bring color and uniqueness to any concrete surface!
Stamped concrete offers a cost effective alternative to natural pavers for many surfaces... like Patios, Porches, Driveways, and Sidewalks.
Kitchens and Bathrooms are joining the growing trend with concrete countertops and sinks. Garage and Basement floors will benefit from an epoxy floor coating and concrete overlays.
Even concrete polishing, normally found in commercial flooring and similar to the traditional terazzo finish, is getting in on the residential action.
Decorative overlays are transforming existing surfaces into works of art. Concrete sealers provide the finishing touch for almost all decorative concrete while protecting it and increasing its lifespan.
For Existing Concrete Surfaces
You've probably seen homes with beautiful driveways, patios, porches, garages, etc and thought it would be nice to have something like that at your house. Having been in the residential construction business for several years, I know that kind of work is very expensive and requires highly skilled tradesmen. Most people simply can't afford it. But there are other cost effective ways
that will enhance your existing surfaces. Find out how decorative concrete stains, paints, overlays, and coatings can transform the appearance.
You've also seen driveways that look like they've been bombarded with artillery shells. Severe chipping and scaling is common on exterior surfaces and there's a good chance it will happen to yours over the years. Let's face it, nothing lasts forever. The weather can really eat up the surface over time along with spilled chemicals and salts. It doesn't take much time and money, though, to maintain a good surface.
Whether you're looking to add color and beauty, or just trying to prevent damage, you've come to the right place.
This site will provide you with information, instructions, and tips for creating better looking, longer lasting concrete.
For New Concrete Surfaces
There are many options for new concrete instead of the usual, boring gray finish. The most popular is stamped concrete. Imagine a reinforced slab that looks like someone laid pieces of slate or bricks, or a combination of both. This is the most elaborate of the decorative applications. It combines not only colors and patterns, but texture as well, and the design opportunities are endless.
Integral coloring, stenciling, polishing, decorative overlays, and even countertops are a few more options for customers. These are not normally do-it-yourself projects and usually require experienced tradesmen. Use this site to explore and learn about the various alternatives.
What can you find on this site....?
Learn how acid staining
can enhance concrete with natural, transparent color. This looks especially nice and elegant on interior floors and you definitely don't have to be a pro to pull it off. But there are some general rules to follow and caveats.
Not all surfaces are suitable for acid stains, but I can certainly help you determine that.
So maybe acid staining won't work for concrete because it's too old or has too many scars or imperfections. Perhaps you just want some more vibrant colors. Then let's look at acrylic concrete stains
. The color selection is much broader and the process a bit easier with several different application methods. But I wouldn't suggest diving into it without doing some homework first.
If you want to get more creative, then a faux finish concrete stain
project may be for you. I'll show you some of the different techniques commonly used, but you might have some of your own ideas. My favorite aspect of faux finishing techniques is the ability fix an otherwise bad stain job. Sometimes staining just does not turn out the way you want. I know, it has happened to me many times. Thank goodness some faux finishing fixed it.
How about raising the difficulty level a bit by incorporating patterns and designs. Although somewhat challenging, the serious DIYer can handle it. Concrete engraving
adds a whole new dimension to decorating existing concrete. It can get time consuming if you get too intricate, but this is one of those areas where "sometimes less is more".
The classic coating for many surfaces, epoxy concrete floor paint
, with its toughness, continues to be a favorite for garages and basements. Floor prep is key here as well as determining if a floor is fitting for epoxy. There are a few different types of epoxy and one happens to be much more user friendly compared to the others.
From clear sealers to elaborate overlays, and everything in between, a concrete floor coating
can serve many purposes. Choosing the type and style can be difficult with so many choices. More important is being able to make an informed decision based on the circumstances. Some may be ideal in your particular situation while others may not. That is where I can help.
Before you lay carpet, tile, or linoleum, consider concrete as the finished basement floor
. Whether it is stained, overlayed, or painted, the advantages are unrivaled. A concrete floor can be designed to match any theme of a finished basement.
From pouring new to maintaining what you already have, get the information you need for a garage concrete floor
. Learn some of the basics of installing garage floors. Look beyond the boring gray surface you're accustomed to and examine some options such as integral color ,stain, and epoxies.
are the leading choice as the centerpiece of outdoor living for several reasons. From a basic broom finish to a detailed stamp pattern, the choices are wide open. As a contractor, installing decorative patios has been my favorite type of work. It dramatically improves the look and feel of any backyard. Even existing patios can be a great canvas for creating your own unique masterpiece. A bit of maintenance can add years to the life of a patio and renew its appearance.
Find out the dos and don'ts of concrete driveways
. There are general rules to follow when installing and maintaining a driveway. The decorative options are just as durable for vehicle traffic and add significant curb appeal.
Already have a concrete pool deck
or thinking of putting one in? Get some ideas for new installations or what to do for a pool deck in need of repair. Perhaps it could just use a refreshing makeover. I may have a few suggestions. You can also find tips on maintaining a good looking and safe surface.
This section of the site wasn't added with the do-it-yourselfers in mind. Stamped concrete
is not a project I recommend for the inexperienced. But it can be a great addition and investment for any home. Check out some of the methods, patterns, and colors. Pretty much anything you want to know about concrete stamping can be found here.
What is polishing concrete
and where is commonly done? The process of polishing is much more complex and more costly than most people realize. But talk about a low maintenance flooring! Find out more about the growing trend and why it's gaining popularity.
Maybe the oldest and still one of the most widely used decorative finishes, exposed aggregate concrete
is not my personal favorite. But it is appealing to many. There's a few different methods for achieving this look. In most cases, the sealcoat makes all the difference.
If you're like I was several years ago, you may be thinking "why concrete for countertops?" if the other options are easier and cheaper. Two words describe concrete countertops
; unique and versatile. There are infinite ways to design and finish them, making it more of an art form than a skilled trade.
Learn some of the basics of forming and pouring concrete steps
in this section. Although there is no limit to planning and constructing steps, a few general guidelines must be followed. Just like flat concrete, steps can be groomed to suit anyone's taste. With proper installation, concrete will easily outlast any other material used to build steps.
The final step on just about every project or job we do is applying a concrete sealer
. Sealer serves a couple purposes. It can also make or break a job. Both choosing the right type and avoiding mistakes is critical in many cases. Find out which sealers work best and where to get them.
Adding color to concrete can be done by applying it to the surface or making it an integral part of the mix. Integrally colored concrete
is being widely used in commercial and residential projects. It sounds like the way to go and for the most part it is, but there are a few drawbacks. We use it for all our stamp work and occasionly for other jobs.
And There's More....!
Sidewalks.... How to make your concrete sidewalks not so plain and boring. Tips on installing, decorating, and maintaining them.
Overlays.... Resurface concrete with cemetitious concrete overlays. Make it look like brand new concrete or get wise to some of the decorative overlay styles.
Cleaning.... Best methods for concrete cleaning to keep it looking nice or in preparation for coatings.
Removing Concrete Stains.... Some common and unconventional ways to remove stains from concrete, including oil, rust, mold, and tire marks.
Floor Wax.... Maintain and protect your floors with easy to apply concrete floor wax.
Concrete Repair.... How to properly repair some ordinary problems such as popouts, spalling, broken corners and edges.
Radiant Floor Heat.... Concrete slab radiant heat source provides level of comfort unmatched by forced air or any other heating system.
Concrete Caulk.... Which types of caulk are best for filling cracks and gaps AND how to use them.
Efflorescence.... A common nuisance on masonry surfaces. How to remove and prevent it.
Calculating Yards.... Enter your dimensions to calculate concrete yards AND amount of bags needed.
Submit a Photo.... Send us a photo of your concrete to post on this site.