You’ve just had a new concrete driveway or patio poured and you are eager to keep it looking good & clean! You might be asking yourself: Can I pressure wash new concrete?
But before you pressure wash new concrete, there are a few things you need to know about how to do it. In this blog post, we will discuss when to pressure wash new concrete, as well as some tips and tricks for getting the job done right.
- New Concrete: How Long to Wait to Pressure Wash
- Tips and Tricks for Pressure Washing New Concrete
- How Often Should You Pressure Wash Concrete?
- How to Keep Concrete Clean
- Various Compositions of Concrete Patios and Driveways
- Newly Decorated Concrete Driveways & Patios
- The Porous Nature of Concrete
- Pre-treating New Concrete
- Sealing a New Concrete Surface
New Concrete: How Long to Wait to Pressure Wash
One common misconception is that you can pressure wash new concrete as soon as it’s dry. However, this is not the case! You should wait at least 28 days after the concrete has been poured before pressure washing it. This will give the concrete time to cure and harden properly.
If you try to pressure wash new concrete too soon, you run the risk of damaging the surface. The high-pressure water can break down the concrete, causing it to crumble and flake off. So when it comes to pressure washing new concrete, patience is key!
Tips and Tricks for Pressure Washing New Concrete
Now that you know when to pressure wash new concrete, here are a few tips and tricks to help you get the job done right:
– Use a pressure washer with adjustable pressure settings or tips. This will allow you to control the amount of pressure being used on the concrete, depending on its age and condition.
-Make sure your garden hose is securely attached to your pressure washer. A good garden hose is also good to have.
-Hopefully you don’t have any stubborn stains on new concrete but if you do, you can soak those stains in a bleach solution for 10 minutes prior to pressure washing. Mix some liquid bleach with water at a 1:1 ratio in a separate bucket and apply that mixture to the stain. Remember, never run bleach through you pressure washer pump.
– When you’re ready to start pressure washing, start with the lowest pressure setting and work your way up. Again, this is to avoid damaging the concrete.
– If you don’t have a surface cleaner attachment, use a fan tip rather than a zero-degree tip. A fan tip will disperse the water over a wider area, which is ideal for concrete surfaces. If you have a pressure washer gun, it may have similar attachments.
– Move the pressure washer in a side-to-side motion while you work. This will help ensure that you cover the entire surface evenly.
– Rinse the concrete surface with clean water when you’re finished. This will remove any leftover dirt or debris.
– Be wary of plants nearby if you used bleach which can act as an herbicide
How Often Should You Pressure Wash Concrete?
After pressure washing your new concrete for the first time, you should pressure wash your concrete surfaces at least once a year. However, if you live in an area with high traffic or pollution, you may need to pressure wash more frequently.
There are a few things that can cause concrete to get dirty:
– Weather: Rain, snow, and ice can track dirt and mud onto concrete surfaces.
– Pollution: Air pollution can settle onto concrete surfaces, causing them to become stained or discolored.
– Vehicles: Cars and trucks can track dirt, oil, and grease onto concrete surfaces.
– Animals: Pets can track dirt and mud into the house, which can then be transferred to concrete floors or patios.
If you keep an eye on your concrete surfaces and clean them when they become dirty, you can extend the life of your pavement and avoid costly repairs. Pressure washing is an easy and effective way to clean concrete, and it can be done relatively cheaply.
If you have any questions about how to pressure wash new concrete, or if you need help pressure washing your home or business, contact a local pressure washing company today. They will be able to give you more specific advice based on your individual needs.
How to Keep Concrete Clean
Now that you have a new concrete patio or driveway and you’re pressure-washed your new concrete, what are some things you can do to keep it clean?
To keep your concrete clean, sweep it regularly with a broom or leaf blower. You should also use a garden to hose it down when it gets dirty. If you do some of these light maintenance chores weekly, you’ll prevent tough stains from setting in that require a pressure washer to clean.
Various Compositions of Concrete Patios and Driveways
Concrete is made up of a variety of different chemicals. The most common chemicals used in concrete are cement, water, sand, and gravel.
Cement is the binding agent that holds all the other ingredients together. It’s made up of limestone, clay, iron oxide, and gypsum.
Water is used to mix all the ingredients together. It helps the concrete set and harden.
Sand is used to add strength and stability to concrete. It’s also used to fill in any voids in the mixture.
Gravel is used to add weight and bulk to concrete. It also helps with drainage and adds strength.
Regardless of the chemical composition of your new concrete surface, you can use a pressure washer to clean it as long as it’s been allowed to dry and cure for one month.
Newly Decorated Concrete Driveways & Patios
Do you have a newly decorated concrete surface and are wondering if it’s safe to pressure wash it? Most of the time the decoration falls into one of three categories: stamped, stained, or polished.
Stamped concrete is regular concrete that has been stamped with a design. This can be anything from a brick pattern to stone or even wood. It’s a popular choice for driveways because it adds texture and interest.
Stained concrete is regular concrete that has been stained with color. This can be done to match the exterior of your home or to create a unique look. It’s a popular choice for driveways because it’s low maintenance and easy to clean.
Polished concrete is regular concrete that has been polished to a shine. This is a popular choice for driveways because it’s easy to clean and maintain.
Newly stamped, stained, and polished concrete can be pressure washed without causing damage, provided the month-long curing period has lapsed.
The one precation to take is to make sure that the stain you use is made for concrete. If another type of stain is used, it may be damaged by a high-pressure washing treatment.
If you’re unsure, start pressure washing it on the lowest PSI setting with the tip of the washer at least 18 inches from the surface and move up from there.
The Porous Nature of Concrete
Concrete is a very popular building material because it is strong and durable. It’s also porous, meaning there are tiny, microscopic holes, or pores, that extend down below the surface of the concrete. These pores are good in that they allow air to pass through the surface, cooling the concrete down on hot days.
Unfortunately, it also means that the concrete can absorb water and moisture, which can lead to mildew and other problems. In addition, the pores in concrete can also trap dirt and other debris. This can make concrete surfaces difficult to clean and keep clean.
You can combat these problems the pores cause by pre-treating your new concrete before pressure washing it and sealing it when you’re done.
Pre-treating New Concrete
If organic material, such as mildew is left to fester within the pores of your concrete, it will soon grow, leaving your new concrete surface looking dirty in no time. Many professional pressure washing companies use a diluted bleach mixture as a primer before they pressure wash. You can make this mixture with a 1% – 1.5% bleach to water solution.
Apply this solution with your pressure washer over the entire concrete surface and allow it to sit for 15-20 minutes.
After 20 minutes, you can now pressure wash your new concrete surface with water. You’ll notice that pre-treating your surface will both loosen up tough stains that would not have come up otherwise, and it will prevent future growth of mildew, mold, and algae.
If you do have a surface pressure washer, that is the ideal tool for concrete surfaces, otherwise a normal pressure washer will do.
Sealing a New Concrete Surface
Once your new concrete surface has been pressure washed and is completely dry, you’ll want to apply a sealant. A sealer will protect your concrete from dirt, water, and other debris that can cause it to break down over time.
There are two types of sealers you can use: solvent-based and water-based.
Solvent-based sealers are made with petroleum products and give off strong fumes when applied. They’re also flammable, so it’s important to take precautions when using them.
Water-based sealers are made with acrylics and give off little to no fumes when applied. They’re also non-flammable, so they’re the safer choice.
Both types of sealers will protect your concrete from the elements and wear and tear. However, solvent-based sealers will last longer – up to five years – whereas water-based sealers will last for two to three years.
Pressure washing is an easy and effective way to clean concrete, but it’s important to do it safely. Make sure you wait a month after your new concrete has been poured before pressure washing it.
Pre-treating your surface before pressure washing and applying a sealant afterward is recommended.
If you are still unsure about pressure washing your new concrete surface and feel like you need help pressure washing your home or business, contact a local pressure washing company. They will be able to give you more specific advice based on your individual needs.
In the meantime, sweep and hose down your concrete regularly to keep it clean and stain-free. And when it’s time to pressure wash again, don’t forget to pre-treat it and seal it afterward.
This will help protect your investment and keep your concrete looking like new for years to come. Thanks for reading!