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What is concrete resurfacing and why you should consider it?

As a homeowner, when we look at all the things we need to do to maintain our property, one thing usually sticks out – old, dirty, damaged, cracked or stained concrete.

For example, if it is a driveway, this generally ruins the picture from the kerb and generally drags down the appeal of your property and lowers its value.

You may have unsightly cracks, discolouration or damaged and ugly concrete that is affecting the attractiveness of your home or business or making it a hard sell if you are considering moving.

One of the first things people see and experience when they visit your property is walking on the driveway. We have also discovered that people who look after their driveways generally have a high standard they maintain on their property. 

If this is something you identify with, and you want to do something about an unsightly concrete area, its time to talk to the experts. Therefore, if you are considering a concrete resurfacing solution, and before you pick one of the top three quotes, let me ask you a question: Do you know what concreting resurfacing or concrete restoration is and how it can be of benefit to you?

You may be considering hiring a concrete removal company to rip and replace your concrete driveway or other concrete surfaces, but before you do, first consider if concrete resurfacing solution is the right solution for your concrete driveway, paths, house surrounds, pool area or entertainment area.

While ripping and replacing your concrete may be an option, but before you go there let me just say that concrete resurfacing will save time, money and the environment. Once you clean up and restore your existing concrete, it will be a prepared concrete canvas for you to design and create a beautiful decorative concrete finish that will look amazing.

Are you still thinking that removing and replacing your concrete is a better idea? In your particular circumstance, it may be, but consider the cost and inconvenience, it can cost 3-5 times more to remove old concrete and replace it with new concrete than a decorative concreting resurfacing solution.

You have no idea the headaches of removing concrete, like discovering the concrete is thicker than you thought, whether plumbing and utility lines will be affected and that you may also require the services of a plumber and electrician.

Concrete resurfacing, on the other hand, completely removes all the general and hidden expenses and surprises from the process. A good concrete resurfacing system, like what Barefoot Concrete provides, is designed to bond to the old concrete substrate at the molecular level, creating a seamless surface finish in natural earth tone colours of your choice, without the hassle of pouring concrete and the headaches that go with it.

Let’s get back to our example of using your driveway, this is the first thing that people see and subconsciously the value of a home is often established by the quality of the driveway.

Here in Southeast Queensland, driveways are typically one of the following types – aggregate, stamped or stencilled concrete, just plain concrete or pavers.

Your concrete may be in a good or bad condition. The good news is that we can do a lot with what appears to be bad but actually just looks bad. Concrete can last a long time! Decades, centuries or in some instances thousands of years.

Things like age and other conditions such as improperly compacted concrete, wrong mixes, bad placement procedures, or inadequate concrete mix can lead to scaling, spalling, dusting, staining, discolouration or cracking. If this is the case, its not the end of the world, rather than ripping out the concrete and starting over, these problems can be resolved and that old, drab looking concrete can be turned into a decorative feature on your property rather than an eyesore.

For example, we get a lot of enquiries about damaged and cracked concrete and how to make it look like something that actually complements and adds value to your home rather than pulling down the image of your home or business property.

Cracks in the concrete are often the trigger that motivates people to do something about their concrete. Once concrete cracks it can look awful! With our concrete resurfacing system, surface preparation is very important, therefore, we deal with the cracks and cut new expansion joints into the concrete to minimize the reappearance or recurrence of the cracks.

Furthermore, our cementitious polymers, that we use in our decorative concrete resurfacing solutions, assist with the flexibility of the concrete, bond strongly to the existing substrate, are tough and durable and are extremely weatherable.

The end result of a concrete resurfacing solution is a complete transformation of the concrete which now becomes a feature that showcases your property.

We all know that in life first impressions count, therefore just as we dress up to impress, so we ought to dress up our property to make it look good! First impressions do count when you get a first-time visitor!

You may be thinking, it’s just a piece of old concrete, just live with it, but no matter how often we are told not to judge a book by its cover or to ignore the telltale defects, as people we are attracted to aesthetically pleasing surfaces and put off by dirty, worn out and damaged surfaces. 

Therefore, as a homeowner, we are all houseproud to some extent and are aware of the importance of how your house looks, not only for real estate purposes but also for the sake of keeping the home in good condition. Look at it this way, it’s easy to see from the garden if someone owns their home or is just a renter. Don’t let your home look like a rental! 

You may be thinking, repairing concrete can cost a lot of money and it can be extremely time-consuming. Fortunately, it’s usually not as bad as it looks, in most cases, you can restore concrete as you are usually dealing with a mildly damaged or worn-out piece of concrete and don’t have to rip and replace it.

This is where a concrete resurfacing solution comes into play. So if you have got this far in the blog and you are still not sure what concrete resurfacing is or why you should consider it, then here goes: Concrete resurfacing can give your concrete surfaces a new finish without the hassle of a complete replacement.

The process is easy and saves you a lot of money that you would otherwise waste if you were to replace your concrete. By the way, new concrete also needs to be cleaned and maintained. Also, with concrete resurfacing, you get far more decorative options to choose from so you can customize and get the look you want.

So, how does it work?

If you were to fix a damaged concrete slab traditionally, you would need to break up the old concrete and remove the rubble. This is a big messy job that is expensive and time-consuming. Then the new concrete is poured for the new surface.

This is a labour-intensive process and it can be expensive, especially if it is a large amount of concrete. The difference between the traditional rip and replace concrete process and the concrete resurfacing process is that concrete resurfacing uses the existing concrete structure as the base. The concrete resurfacing material goes directly on top of the existing concrete area.

How do you prepare the existing concrete for concrete resurfacing?

Preparation is the key, and this is where if shortcuts are taken, it generally comes back to haunt you in the future. As such, the area that needs to be resurfaced should be clean with no loose concrete or other debris around it.

The best method for surface preparation is mechanical grinding, however, pressure cleaning the surface and acid washing can sufficiently prepare the surface in most instances. If there are any cracks and blemishes on the surface these should be resolved with a crack repair system and correct saw cuts or expansion joints, so that the surface is ready for the concrete resurfacing coating.

The resurfacing material is then applied with a hopper gun over the area and evenly sprayed to create an even anti-slip decorative finish. After the polymer-modified concrete resurfacing system has cured it will be a beautiful new floor.

What is concrete resurfacing made from?

Simply put, concrete resurfacing is made from a combination of a cement-based resurfacing compound that is mixed with our special flexible polymer, a concentrated and high-solids acrylic modifier, that is a powerful and flexible bonding agent.

The resurfacing mix is then sprayed over the existing prepared concrete surface and bites into the existing concrete and bonds strongly to create a beautiful and aesthetically pleasing new surface.

The new surface cures and becomes as hard as the concrete it bonds too, you can walk on it after 24 hours and drive on it after 7 days.

What are the benefits of concrete resurfacing?

Apart from saving you money and totally transforming your old and worn-out concrete, there are many other benefits of concrete resurfacing. Basically, concrete resurfacing is easier than breaking apart old concrete and pouring it all over again.

Generally, a residential job will take three days to complete and will save you time and money. It is resilient to future wear and tear and will last for many years. It also allows for custom finishes so you can get the outcome you desire, that of a beautiful new surface to compliment your property.

Does my surface qualify for concrete resurfacing?

Concrete resurfacing works best on areas with minor damage. There are a few things we specifically look for when our estimators go on-site to evaluate your project that may be a major risk to applying a concrete resurfacing solution.

For example, if there is an excessive amount of cracks, it may indicate an underlying problem with ground movement that may cause even our premium flexible concrete resurfacing solution to crack. It may have a dusting problem, or there may be excessive moisture in the concrete. These kinds of things can cause a job to fail, therefore, we look to resolve these issues to minimize the risk of the coating delaminating or breaking up and causing the property owner a bigger headache.

As we mentioned earlier, preparation is key, and the difference between a good applicator and a bad one if often in the attention to detail when the surface preparation is done prior to applying a decorative coating.

Also, ff your floors have large holes, pitting, spalling or extreme damage to them you may want to look into repairing that first to ensure a coating won’t fail.

Concrete resurfacing doesn’t fix structural problems, therefore, we will warn you if we discover that a structural problem exists. In this case, we may recommend ripping and replacing the concrete.

If you apply a decorative concrete resurfacing solution over major cracks, without grinding and filling them and inserting expansion joints, eventually the cracks will reoccur or reappear and this will ruin your new surface which may result in having to grind it all off and do it again properly – and that can be expensive, literally more than doubling the original cost.

We have been in business for a few years, and our contractors even longer together our combined experience enables us to confidently provide the best solution possible in your situation.

Therefore, as with any other skill, its best to get in touch with us, we will help you to find a solution to meet your expectations and cost. As such, for a decorative concrete resurfacing solution, you can be looking at a rate as low as $35/m2 to $45/m2 on average, and anywhere up to $65/m2 or more depending on your particular circumstances.

If you want to restore or rejuvenate your concrete driveway or concrete areas with a concrete resurfacing solution please contact us for an estimate or for more information about concrete resurfacing.

We are here to help you and will happily answer all your questions about any of our services and work with you for the best plan to keep make your property look great!