How Do I Stain My Concrete Patio
One of the questions I get asked a lot is “how do I stain my concrete patio”? I’ll go over the process in a second but first you’ve got to hear what can go wrong if you get misguided.
Years ago when I branched off into concrete I got a client that wanted his patio stained and sealed. I called the rep of this big name concrete coatings manufacturer and he told me to seal it with their epoxy… and since it’s outside just use their urethane which would protect the epoxy from UV rays. So I prepped the patio, stained it with this stain that had to be diluted and took a day to cure. Then came back and did the two coat sealer application like the rep said. A month or so later the client called me and said the sealer was peeling up. Curious, I went and checked it out.
The entire patio was peeling up! See, epoxy breaks down in the sunlight which can delaminate the topcoat. Plus since it was fairly hot out I guess the urethane set up too quick and started peeling away from the epoxy base coat. What a nightmare! I had to scrape up the entire patio then strip up what I couldn’t scrape up. Now I was back to square one… weak! This taught me that most sealer reps don’t know what the hell they’re talking about and just want to get you off the phone. There can be a learning curve to any project and it’s best to learn the proper way to do things before you get started.
How do I stain my concrete patio? Well, the entire process can be broken into three easy steps… 1. Cleaning 2. Staining 3. Sealing
So lets get started with the cleaning process. I personally like to pressure wash the concrete, then mist it down with an acid replacement cleaner, then give it a thorough rinse after. So pressure washing will remove any contaminants from the top of the concrete and the expansion joints. Any pressure washer will do… even a low psi electric pressure washer. If you don’t have a pressure washer (and can’t borrow one from the neighbor) then a hose with a jet nozzle will work. You’ll just have to scrub the concrete with a deck brush or push broom after applying the acid replacement cleaner. This will make sure the pores of the concrete are opened.
If there are any oil or grease stains on the concrete pour a little degreaser onto the spot and scrub. Rinse the area well after scrubbing. Repeat this process until the water doesn’t bead up on the spot anymore.
After you’re done cleaning you can remove any puddled water with a push broom or leaf blower and then let the concrete dry out for a day or two.
Staining And Sealing
You might have to mask a wall or two, maybe even an awning pillar before starting. Pour the stain through a paint strainer into a pump sprayer equipped with a cone tip on the wand. Pump that bad boy up and start spraying! Apply enough concrete stain to completely cover the concrete but don’t go crazy. You don’t want excessive puddling of the stain. Do this across the entire patio and allow the stain completely dry. This usually takes an hour or two.
After the stain is completely dry you can start the sealing process. Most high quality outdoor sealers are urethane based. This means you’ll have to apply at least two coats, probably three for best results. I like to pour some sealer into a paint tray and roll the sealer on. This is similar to rolling on paint. Don’t forget to use a paint brush and get into all of the expansion joints. Roll out the patio starting on one side and working your way to the other. Make sure you’re rolling it on nice and thin, without any puddling.
After the first coat is dry to touch (approx. one hour) you can get started on the second coat. Same process as the first but you’ll probably use a little less sealer on the additional coats. Now I like to do three coats which is what I do for my clients… so that’s what I recommend you do.
Tips For The Beginner
If you hustle you can stain and get three coats of sealer down in one day. I can personally knock out around 1,000 sq. ft. all by myself in a day. If you have a large patio over 1,000 sq. ft. then staining and sealing should be broken into two days. Either do all of the staining in one day then seal the following day. The other option is to break the project in half, complete the first half the first day, then complete the second half the following day.
What shouldn’t be done is to stain then apply one coat the first day then do the second and third coats the following day. The first coat might not bond properly to the additional coats.
A Stain Kit For Beginners?
So after doing concrete staining for over a decade and using all of the major brands, I’ve put together the easiest to use stain kit you’ll find. No mixing or diluting required. Video tutorials and pdf printable instructions included FREE with the kit. A one year, 100% money back guarantee which NO OTHER company offers. And if you still have questions after watching the video tutorials you can text me directly… yay!
The amount of great feedback I’ve been getting on this kit has been mind blowing. Small service based companies are getting the kit just for the video tutorials so they can train their employees with them. It’s an amazing deal that’s completely risk free so don’t wait! Get your own Do-It-Yourself Concrete Staining Kit HERE right now! All of this information and more are included in the in depth video instructions that comes free with the kit. Nice!
How Do I Stain My Concrete Patio If It’s Been Painted?
If your patio has paint or other sealers already on it then those will have to be removed before you stain and seal. This process can be pretty involved. Check out this video for more information on paint and coating removal for outdoor concrete.
This article goes over how do I stain my concrete patio with a water based stain. Acid stains add complexity to the process and I wouldn’t recommend using them on your first try. For more info on the difference between acid stains and water based stains check this article out.
For more information on how to apply concrete stain please watch read my blog and my video on the process.