Common Problems With Your Existing Concrete Surface
People first see your driveway when they pull up to your house. It’s also the first thing you see when you leave your home. So why not make it look its best? A concrete driveway overlay can give your driveway a beautiful new look that will last for years. In this blog post, we’ll discuss the different types of concrete overlays you can use, the steps of the process, and how to maintain your new driveway. This post will also give tips on choosing contractors to resurface your existing concrete driveways, pool decks, patios, and other concrete surfaces in your home. So whether your driveway’s concrete surface is in bad shape and needs some serious TLC or you want to update its look, an overlay for your driveway is the way to go.
While concrete is a durable and high-tensile strength construction material, your old concrete driveway can still suffer from wear and tear. Aside from bearing the weight of the vehicles, you park on your old driveway; your driveway is also exposed to heavy foot traffic that can cause surface damage. This includes having small cracks, pitting, fading, staining, and more. You can add an overlay to fix a damaged driveway and gives your damaged concrete surface a fresh look.
Types Of Concrete Overlays For Your Driveway
You can choose a few concrete overlays: stamped concrete, epoxy concrete coating, and micro-topping.
Stamped Concrete Overlay
Stamped concrete overlays will give your existing concrete driveway a refreshing new look. This stamped overlay is designed using concrete stamps that imitate the look of natural stone, brick, slate, and other materials. This concrete overlay can also be colored to give it a unique look which will increase your home’s curb appeal. Using stamped concrete overlay techniques, you can renew the look of your old driveway to resemble a natural or real stone.
This concrete overlay can replicate natural stones such as flagstone, cobblestone, and slate. Natural stones are expensive, so an overlay is an excellent and more affordable option to achieve the same look. You can save money, especially if your driveway has extensive square footage.
Epoxy Concrete Coating
This concrete driveway resurfacing technique will make your driveway resistant to damage and abrasion while giving it a clear finish coat. A two-part liquid epoxy concrete coating covers your concrete driveway surface, creating an easy-to-maintain and durable surface. One benefit of this type of concrete driveway resurfacing is that it is slip-resistant. Epoxy concrete driveway resurfacing can also be used for pool decks, patios, and exposed sidewalks. Since a pool deck is prone to getting wet, an epoxy concrete coating is perfect if you want to start the concrete resurfacing for your pool deck.
A micro-topping concrete overlay is perfect for covering up small cracks and pits in your existing concrete driveway or any bare concrete surface in your home. This type of concrete overlay has a thin layer of cement material applied to the concrete surface and then left to dry before being sealed. The concrete overlay can also be textured or stamped to give it a unique look. You can also add multiple colors to this concrete overlay, making your concrete driveway stand out from the neighbors' drives!
Steps Of Concrete Driveway Resurfacing With Concrete Overlay
The concrete resurfacing process for basic concrete overlays is simple and easy. Here are the steps.
Assessing Your Concrete Driveway
The first step in resurfacing concrete driveways is to assess the concrete surface. Concrete contractors will inspect your home’s concrete surfaces for any deep cracks, pits, concrete stains, and other damages that need to be repaired before you can resurface your concrete driveway.
Preparing The Concrete Surface
The next step is to prepare the concrete by cleaning it properly and removing all dirt, grime, and debris. Concrete resurfacing professionals will use a pressure washer to remove grime and other debris to expose the existing slab.
Repairing The Surface
It is impractical to start the concrete resurfacing process if the existing surface has deep cracks. The overlay materials will not adhere properly if concrete cracks are present. Therefore, concrete cracks and other damages must be repaired before resurfacing.
Installing Overlay Material
Once the concrete surface is cleaned and prepared, the contractor will install the overlay material onto the concrete surface. The concrete overlay material can range from stamped concrete, epoxy concrete coating, or micro-topping concrete materials, depending on what you want for your driveway.
Lastly, it’s time to add the finishing touches after the concrete overlay has been placed on your driveway to match your desired designs and color choices. This includes edge sealing, texturing, and polishing the new surface.
Adding Designs And Staining With Colors
You can customize your driveway concrete resurfacing with designs and colors to make your concrete driveway look more attractive. Stamped concrete is a popular method of adding texture and color to concrete driveways. With stamped concrete, you can choose any pattern or design you like for your concrete overlay. You can add multiple colors to the stamped concrete surface to achieve a unique and eye-catching driveway.
General Tips During The Overlay Process
- Use self-leveling concrete for concrete overlays. This type of concrete helps to ensure that the concrete overlay will stay level and flat as it cures.
- Make sure you use a curing compound on the concrete overlay surface. This helps protect the concrete from damage during the curing process and keeps it looking good for many years.
- Use a concrete broom to texture the surface after it cures. This helps to create a slip-resistant surface on your concrete driveway.
- Ensure that you have written permission from your local housing authority or city before you start concrete overlay work on your driveway.
Maintaining Your New Concrete Overlay
Once the concrete overlay is installed, you must maintain it to keep it looking great. This includes regularly washing the concrete with a pressure washer and applying sealer every 2-3 years. Make sure to use concrete cleaners formulated for concrete resurfacing projects, as this will ensure that your new concrete driveway looks new.
In conclusion, concrete overlays are a great way to upgrade the look of your concrete driveway and make it stand out from the rest. Many types of concrete overlays are available for different applications, and you can customize them with designs, colors, textures, and more. While the process may initially seem intimidating, following these tips can help create a durable and attractive concrete driveway resurfacing project.
Tips For Hiring Concrete Contractors
Concrete contractors are not created equal; you must hire a qualified, experienced contractor for your concrete resurfacing project. Here are the things to consider when hiring a contractor.
Licensed, Bonded, And Insured
Ensure the contractor is licensed, bonded, and insured to protect yourself from potential liability. Likewise, check if the contractor is certified by an authority in the concrete contractors' industry.
Proper Equipment And Quality Material
Ensure the contractor has proper equipment and quality material for resurfacing. Ask what type of concrete they will use and if it suits your project. Ensure that stamped or decorative concrete or any other design element is done correctly to ensure a good-looking driveway.
Check the contractor’s warranty and service guarantees to ensure you get the highest quality workmanship possible. Make sure all services are stated in writing, so you have protection should anything go wrong with your new concrete driveway overlay.
Check the contractors' references to ensure they have good reviews and a history of success with decorative concrete resurfacing. A good contractor can provide you with recent examples of their work.
Hire Local Contractors
Hiring a local contractor is essential to ensure you get the best value for your money. Local contractors are more likely to show up on time and have experience in concrete driveway resurfacing projects near you.
By following these tips, you can increase your chances of having a successful concrete overlay project that will last for many years. Whether adding designs and colors or simply resurfacing existing driveways, pool decks, or patios, hiring experienced professionals who can provide quality workmanship and excellent customer service is essential. If you call the right concrete contractor, your concrete overlay project will look amazing!