The popularity of concrete for domestic and commercial use alike means that it can be seen almost everywhere you look. But what if you want your concrete surface to stand out from the crowd? If that’s the case, then a lick of paint will do the trick and soon see your driveway or other surface totally transformed. However, before you begin giving your driveway a facelift, there are issues and complications that may need to be worked around.

Wash the floor

Before you start, you need to ensure that your surface is as clean as can be. Check for any water seeping through, and if you notice any, eliminate the source of it to prevent further leakage. A sign that you might have a water issue is efflorescence on the floor. Efflorescence is white residue that is left after a leak. This, coupled with dark spots on the concrete can indicate a water issue. If you do need to eliminate water seepage, then make sure you use the correct products and take the correct safety procedures beforehand – some of these products can generate harmful fumes. Make sure the floor is washed thoroughly with a degreasing solution, and then leave the surface to dry for several days.

Sand and vacuum the floor

It can be very difficult to paint a non-smooth surface, and doing so will probably lead to a less-than-perfect paint job. Uneven areas need to be smoothed down, and old paint needs to be sanded off. Once this has been done, vacuum any dust and debris away, then wipe the service with a cloth.

Fill any cracks

Using a concrete patch compound, fill any gaps in your surface. Follow the instructions on the packaging to do so. For tricky areas, use a trowel to compact the concrete. Allow to dry completely before continuing.

Take note of climate

If the temperature is below 10 degrees, then the use of epoxy paint should be avoided. These temperatures can lead to the paint peeling, which is the last thing you need when trying to freshen up your surface.

Grind previously sealed floors

If your concrete has been sealed before, then the epoxy paint is not going to be able to stick to it and will likely peel. The only course of action for this is to grind the floor down, removing the sealant and the surface simultaneously. To check if your floor has a sealant on it, drip some water onto the surface. If it beads up and does not soak into the floor, your floor is sealed.

Observe excess laitance

If your concrete surface has what appears to be ‘veins’ running over it, this is a fine cement paste layer that appears as a result of excess bleed water when trowelling, or when water is sprayed on the concrete when finishing.

Address soft concrete

Caused by poor quality concrete, bad finishing techniques or a combination of both these things, soft concrete is signified by heavy surface dusting, areas that are easily marked or damaged, and crumbling. To rid your surface of this issue, grind the concrete down and add a densifier where necessary to harden it. In some cases, where the soft concrete cannot be restored, things like paving slabs or tiles may be the solution.

There are a number of issues that might need to be taken care of before you get around to painting your concrete, but they can be taken care of easily with the right equipment and processes. After that, it is a case of choosing your colour of epoxy paint and getting to work.

EasyMix Concrete UK are proud to provide high quality readymix and volumetric concrete for domestic and commercial clients alike. If you would like to know more, please get in touch with us today and we’ll be more than happy to help you with anything you need.