Topic: Blog

Easy Repair Tips For Simple Concrete Damages

pool deck concrete repairPatching is the most common concrete repair in Philadelphia for minor concrete damage, such as cracks and holes. It can be done using concrete or a special patching agent. Whether you are a homeowner planning a DIY or a licensed concrete contractor in Philadelphia, here are some helpful tips and gentle reminders:

  • Make sure that the damaged area is cleaned and dried off first before any repairs are done. Using a stiff brush, brush off any debris or dust. Pressure wash the surface to remove any stubborn or built up dirt. If you notice any loose or unsound concrete, chisel or hammer it off.
  • Wear protective gear, such as gloves, long-sleeved shirts, pants, and safety glasses. This is to protect yourself while hammering or chiseling loose concrete off.
  • Before mixing the concrete or patching agent, check the manufacturer’s instructions and make sure to follow it to a T.
  • Do not add too much water when mixing. Just add a little at a time until it reaches a peanut butter-like consistency.
  • When preparing the mixture for patching, mix only an amount that will surely be used within 20 to 30 minutes. If not, the rest will dry and harden before it even gets used.
  • To test if a mixture is too dry, apply a little near the damaged spot. Broom it and check if it creates broom marks or balls. If balls form, then it is too dry. Add some water, mix it well, and test it again.
  • If a crack or hole needs a ¼-inch thick patch, apply it in layers. Allow each layer to dry before applying the next. Applying one big lump of concrete or patching compound might need more time to dry. Also, inconsistent curing might occur.
  • If there are too many minor cracks and holes, a decorative concrete resurfacing Philadelphia solution is more ideal. This way, all the damage is taken care of and the surface’s appeal and durability are improved.
  • Tape off the area where the decorative concrete overlay is not needed. This protects that area and makes cleanup easier.
  • Whether you went for a simple patching or decorative concrete in Philadelphia, make sure to protect the area for about 24 hours while the concrete dries. Even if it is dry, the area should be kept from foot traffic or furniture for a minimum of 3 days to ensure proper curing.


Stamped Concrete Patterns for Patio Makeover

The patio is an important area of a house. It is an outdoor living space where people can hang out, relax, and entertain guests. It is important to keep the concrete surface in good condition so as to enhance the enjoyment and comfort of those using it. This is what decorative concrete resurfacing is for. One of the most popular patio makeover solutions is the use of a stamped concrete overlay. It is aesthetic, durable, and economical. What’s not to like? Here are some of the most popular patterns that stamped concrete patio contractors offer:

aslar stamped concrete pattern PhillyAshlar

This features the pattern of finely cut masonry. It shows a pattern of individual stones with edges cut to a straight line. The stones are in random sizes but all with hard, finely cut edges. This pattern can be stamped on plain concrete and then sealed. But some prefer the pattern to be incorporated with a stained concrete overlay, with each stone having different hues or different shades of one color.

fractured slate stamped pattern PhillyFractured Slate

This pattern aims to mimic the look of a dense, fine-grained metamorphic rock. Slate, when broken or fractured, retains its natural stone look because it maintains its almost flat surface. Expansion joints or score lines can be added to the overlay with this pattern. It can be left gray or stained with a bluish purple or bluish green color to replicate the stone more accurately.

 

cobblestone stamped pattern PhillyCobblestone

Cobblestone is a naturally rounded rock used on roads in the olden times. Each stone is larger than a pebble but not as big as a boulder. These stones are laid out on streets and then sealed in place with mortar. This pattern looks good on patios, adding a bit of classic paving beauty to it.

 

flagstone stamped pattern PhillyFlagstone

Flagstone, or flat stone, is known for its thin slab-like appearance, It is naturally flat so there isn’t much need to trim it down to a walkable surface. These are cut randomly and looks better with irregular shapes. The stamped flagstone pattern makes the patio look natural without the expensive cost that comes with real stone. This is often stained to achieve a more realistic aesthetic.

brick stamped pattern PhillyBrick

Probably the most common paving material used on patios, brick is also available for a stamped overlay surface. These are easier to do since the pattern is quite equal and uniform all throughout. This pattern can also be used as a border or frame around the patio area.

 


Popular Stamped Concrete Patterns for a Driveway

Planning a driveway renovation should not be taken lightly. It is a major element in enhancing curb appeal. Because it often involves a wide area, a concrete driveway is the most practical option. But who says you have to endure a boring concrete surface just to keep costs at bay? Decorative stamped concrete overlay is the best option if you are after aesthetics and affordability. Plus, it’s such a bonus that it is durable and easy to maintain as well. Here are some of the most popular stamped concrete patterns for driveways:

cobblestone stamped pattern driveway PhillyCobblestone

Originally used in the European part of the globe, cobblestone roads consisted of smooth rocks placed together like pavers. The pattern it creates is interesting and impressive to look at. It also provides enough traction to make it an ideal design for dirt roads. It is one of the most popular concrete resurfacing patterns for these reasons. It looks good on any driveway, regardless of the theme and concept of its architectural design.

brick stamped pattern PhillyBrick

Nothing is as timeless as brick itself. It can be used on walls and pavements. On a concrete overlay, a stamped brick pattern come in several variations. You can choose for a simple running brick pattern or a herringbone pattern for a more interesting and decorative look. There is also the option of a basketweave or a fan pattern. The possibilities are endless.

ashlar stamped pattern driveway PhillyAshlar

The great thing about an ashlar pattern is that it can be designed to look like a traditional paving material or a modern geometric surface. Incorporating an ashlar pattern with natural stone is great for homes with a more classical or traditional aesthetic. If your home is more on the contemporary side, you might want to incorporate ashlar with shades of gray, black, and white and with a smoother surface like that of bricks.

stamped concrete drivewaySlate

Slate can be used with a wide range of stamped patterns, such as ashlar and tile. You may also stamp a fractured slate pattern seamlessly or just some minimal scoring or engraving. One popular use for a slate pattern is to use it on the whole driveway and then choose another pattern, like a brick pattern, to line the edges or to break the monotony for every few meters or so. This can be made more customized and a lot more realistic with manual concrete staining.


5 Kid-Friendly Pool Deck Ideas

Most homes nowadays have swimming pools. There are so many concrete pool deck designs nowadays that feature stunning aesthetics and innovative concepts. However, if you have kids in the house, not just any design is enough. It is important to make the pool deck as safe and kid-friendly as it could possibly be. If you already have an existing pool deck, here some things you could do to make the pool area more enjoyable for kids:

stamped concrete pool deck philadelphiaSlip-resistant Pool Deck

Kids love to run around the pool deck in between swimming and taking dips. With wet and bare feet, it could be very dangerous. Stamped Concrete or spray-down concrete resurfacing are some of the most efficient solutions to improving slip-resistance on a pool deck. A stamped overlay or knockdown texture on concrete provides just the right texture without making the surface difficult to walk on especially with bare feet. The great thing about stamped overlays is that it comes in a variety of patterns and designs to choose from. A spray texture, on the other hand, features a stucco-like look but with a more subtle texture.

knockdown texture phialdelphiaCool Deck Surface

Concrete and most pool deck materials have the tendency to turn into really hot surfaces when exposed to sunlight for long hours. Asking kids to wear flip flops every time they need to walk around the deck can be quite challenging for parents and inconvenient for kids. Instead, hire a contractor to install a spray knockdown finish on the existing pool deck. This resurfacing material is known for its heat reflectivity. Instead of absorbing heat, a knockdown finish reflects it back, keeping the surface 30% cooler.
 

wading are for kidsWide Wading Area

Extend the pool deck a bit into the pool but make it about 6 or more inches deeper. This area is not only great for sunbathing, but also great for smaller kids to enjoy the pool at a safe distance from the deeper areas.

 

 

swimming pool shade for kidsAdd Some Shade

Kids can stay out in the pool area the whole day if they want to but parents fear that they would acquire terrible sunburn. Adding some shaded area gives children a place to lounge and play without getting burned under tremendous heat. You can use a big umbrella or some fabric hanging somewhere near the pool.

 

swimming pool towel and toy areTowel and Toy Area

Make towels and pool toys accessible for kids. When kids get out of the pool, it would be nice to have towels they can use immediately right on the pool deck. It would be a lot easier also for parents to fix pool toys because they just put it in one spot near the pool instead of into the garage or back in the house.


3 Pool Deck Options Perfect for Autumn Weather

pool decking PhiladelphiaThe Fall season is one of the preferable seasons of all because of the rich Autumn colors on the trees and the cooler climate. Unfortunately, it is not really the best season for using the pool, unless you have a hot tub, then it is the perfect time of the year for a soak. So, what else can be done to make the pool decking an equally enjoyable space even during Fall? Here are some ideas:

Integrate Fall Colors

If you have trees around the pool deck that feature the colors of Fall, then you are lucky. However, you can further enhance it with flowers in similar colors or other autumn hues like pink, magenta, purple, and blue. You may also want to opt for resurfacing pool deck area with concrete overlays in Fall-like colors. It could be a red brick surface or a travertine patterned overlay hand-stained with the colors of the season. If you have deck chairs or beds, add some orange or yellow pillows or throws. Not only will these create a trending look, it also provides the necessary stuff to keep warm while outdoors.

Heat Up the Deck

The deck may seem like a colder area, thanks to the drop in temperature as the season slowly shifts to a winter. So, why not add heat to the cool decking? Adding fire pits or outdoor fireplaces provide a means for warmth and illumination in this time of the year. You can hang out all you want at night time, watching the stars, and not freeze to death. A working fire not only provides heat and light, it also allows you to roast some barbecue or some plain marshmallows. That and the throws and pillows you have prepared will definitely guarantee a warm and cozy outdoor experience.

Enhance Outdoor Lighting

Lights are always essential, regardless of the season. However, during these cool months, it would be nice to have enhanced lighting to make the surroundings look warmer and brighter. Lighting fixtures can also be a decorative solution to make the pool deck area more Autumn-like. Hanging a string of Christmas lights or small lanterns around and across the trees will bring a bohemian vibe to the pool deck. It provides subtle lights that seem to twinkle like stars where they are. Intricately designed lamps can be hung on posts or branches or simply placed on the deck beside some chairs or by the pool. Using tea lights is also a great way of adding drama while keeping the area warm and cozy.