For many years people like the appeal of brick and stone for their patios and other spaces. While this may still be true, the cost of using these materials has steadily risen too much for many these days. This is where stamped concrete can be a lifesaver. Stamped concrete can achieve the look and feel of many different materials turning your plain slab of cement into a work of art. Concrete stamping can achieve the visual appeal of various materials such as brick, tile, stone, flagstone, and even wood. We can achieve many of the most commonly used materials for your patio or concrete porch with stamped concrete. When you want to save money, but still get the visual appeal of stone or brick, stamped concrete is here to save the day.
Adding The Base Coat
Before we can begin stamping your concrete, it is vital that we get the base coat added. This base coat is added as a hardener that also functions to make your concrete stronger. We can use two different methods to add the hardener though integral color and cast-on color.
Integral color is best to use when you want the color to go through the entire surface of your concrete. This is accomplished by adding the colored hardener during the mixing process of your concrete.
For cast-on color, the color is only added to the surface of the concrete. After all, it is not always necessary to have the color going entirely through, plus with the cast-on method, it does cost much less. Either way, both add that fantastic base coat for your concrete and are excellent in their own right.
Adding The Accent Color
Nothing in nature is purely a single color. Even some of the desired building materials with have color variations or that extra detail of aspects such as grout with bricks. That is why we have this vital second step of adding the accent color. The second color is added along with the color release, which is also crucial as it will help make the molds easier to remove once we are done. As well, like with the color hardener, there are a couple of different methods for adding the accent color with the cast-on and liquid methods.
The cast-on method is much in the same as with how the color hardener is done. Again, being a layer that is added to the surface of your concrete. The liquid method is slightly different in that the spray is added directly to the molds themselves.
Adding The Stamp
After the colors have been added, we will them quickly stamp the surface to give that final level of detail and texture to have your concrete perfectly mimic the desired material. It is also essential to know that all of these steps are done quickly in succession of each other as they must be done while the concrete is still very wet. After all, you want the maximum out of the stamped design so the concrete must be able to fit into all of the nooks and crannies.