Concrete is a great material that got better when techniques were discovered to decorate it. Today, there are many countless ways of creating decorative concrete from stamping, pattern, painting, coating, etc. Decorative concrete has revolutionized the material as it is now possible to use it in places where it was once considered dull. If you are considering decorating your concrete, there are a few things you should know. It is always essential to get the texture right when decorating your concrete because a poor texture is not only an eyesore; it is also not going to last. Here, we focus on stamping and the tips that can help you get the best out of the process.
Do The Stamping or Decorating Early:
The best time to stamp concrete is as soon as it is dry and strong enough to carry weight. This means doing it before the concrete becomes too hard. Most homeowners or contractors wait till the concrete is super hard, and they have to use a tamper in order to be able to stamp. The result is that the imprint is not fully formed on the concrete, and there is little texture on the edges of the concrete.
Use Set Retarders and Evaporators:
On the flip side of stamping, your concrete very late is stamping too early. Usually, stampers take a dry surface to mean the concrete is fully hardened, whereas it is only the surface. Stamping at this time will go deeper than it should. Thus, it is advisable to apply evaporation retarder to the concrete to prevent the surface from drying too fast. Set retarders could also be used to delay the setting of the concrete.
Crawl The Slab:
Properly working on the concrete slab and ensuring it has the same consistency as the edges are essential. Most times, concrete contractors focus on the concrete edges and only use a bull trowel or bull float for the other part of the concrete. This is done mostly because they don’t want to step on it. However, the result is a crusty or too smooth surface. By properly floating all parts of the concrete and achieving consistency, stamping is easier to do.
Wear Texture Shoes:
These shoes work best for stamping and are further buttressed by how convenient they are to wear. With these shoes on, you can get on the concrete earlier. It perfectly distributes your weight over the area and allows you to walk well on the soft concrete and not sink in. The shoe soles have the same texture as stamping mats; thus, you are unlikely to leave a mark even when you mistakenly step on concrete.
Start Stamping from The Center:
When the stamping stats in the middle, it is easier to achieve a uniform texture with two people stamping in opposite directions. This is because the concrete starts hardening with time, and the texture can be similar across-board. Beginning in the middle will require at least two stamps, but it is worth the price of a better and more uniform texture.
When it comes to decorating concrete by stamping, it is advisable to use liquid stamp release to achieve a uniform color for your stamped concrete. With these tips, you will achieve a better texture.