If you want a more attractive patio, you might be looking at ways to upgrade your old concrete. An option to consider is concrete stamping. Stamping can make your patio look entirely different. You get to choose the design and color you like. If you're not familiar with concrete stamping, read on to find out a few things you should know.
The Contractor Can Help You Choose The Shape
You may already have a vision for what you want your patio to look like, but if you don't, the contractor can explain all of the possibilities by showing you options in stamps. Some stamps create small rectangles that look like bricks. Others might create large squares that look like tiles.
You can even get plank shapes if you want your patio to look like it's made of wood. Other stamps have irregular shapes that look like natural flagstone pavers. Once color is added and the designs are stamped in, your patio will look like it's really made from flagstone or bricks.
Stamping Requires A Concrete Overlay
Designs have to be stamped into wet concrete. That means it's necessary to put a new layer of cement over your old patio. This gives your patio an entirely new surface, but the new cement may not even show.
The real purpose of the cement is to create a wet layer the concrete stamps can be pressed into. This requires careful planning since the new cement has to be almost dry so the stamped form takes hold, but not so stiff that the cement can't be worked with.
Stamps Press Shapes Onto Your Patio
Concrete stamping is done with large stamps the contractor presses in the cement. Once you choose the shape you want, the contractor plans out how the designs will be stamped before the cement is poured. This allows the crew to work fast before the cement dries.
They may place a few rows of stamps at a time, and press them down to ensure the stamps make clean and deep lines in the cement. Powdered color dyes are added during this step too so the concrete takes on the color of red bricks, brown wood planks, or any color you choose before the cement dries.
A Topcoat Protects Your New Patio
Your concrete stamping contractor will probably end the installation by putting a sealcoat on your patio. This protects the color from fading and blocks the pores in the concrete so the concrete is easier to keep clean. Different types of sealcoats are available. You might want one that is completely transparent and invisible, or you might want a sealcoat that gives your patio a deep shine.