How to Properly Complete Concrete Cleaning (5 Tips & Methods)

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If you’ve ever seen an old, uncleaned parking lot or warehouse floor, then you know just how unsightly concrete can be once it starts to age and get beat up by the elements. Fortunately, concrete cleaning doesn’t have to be too difficult, provided that you use the right tools and methods when you clean. Here are 5 tips and methods to properly complete concrete cleaning on any given surface.

Choose The Best Products

A lot of people don’t realize that there are various types of concrete cleaners, each with its own strengths and weaknesses. In the end, your decision should come down to what you want your final surface to look like.

If you have a lot of grease, oil and dirt on your concrete surface, choosing a degreaser type of cleaner may be best. However, for other surfaces, where you just want to clean off stains and keep it looking fresh, then a different product would be better suited.

Learn How To Maintain Your Concrete Cleaner: Once you’ve chosen your ideal cleaning agent there are certain things that will help in keeping your concrete surface at its best. Click here for more resources.

Prepare The Surface For Cleaning

Start by removing any loose debris or oil stains with a broom and dust pan, sweeping in the direction of the concrete’s grain. Next, use a water hose or pressure washer to rinse the surface of the concrete well, using caution not to damage nearby structures. Allow the surface of your concrete slab dry completely before proceeding with any type of cleaning method; this will allow it time to cure and will help prevent further damage from occurring. 

Preparing the surface will make the cleaning process more effective and you’ll be able to see what needs to be done better. For example, if you have used an oil-based product on your driveway for whatever reason, then when you rinse the surface with a water hose or pressure washer after it dries, any residue left behind will come off much easier. As always, prevention is key so avoid these mistakes!

Wet The Surface

Before beginning the process, wet the surface with water. This will help break up any dirt and make it easier to clean. Next, use a scrubbing brush or pressure washer to scrub away any grease, oil or tar that may be on the surface of your concrete. Be sure not to use too much water when wetting your concrete as this can cause some areas of the surface to become soft and damaged. 

It is also important to not just focus on one area for too long. A great way to combat this is by using a rotary power scrubber, which has an oscillating action that helps reduce over-cleaning in any one spot. Once you are done scrubbing, hose down the concrete and allow it to dry before proceeding with another step in the cleaning process.

Use Correct Pressure On the Dirt

When pressure is applied on the dirt, it should be enough to take the top layer off of the concrete. This can be achieved by using a high-pressure power washer. If you are cleaning your driveway, you may want to use a water blaster with a low-pressure setting for easier cleaning and removal of any dirt or graffiti. 

In order to get rid of stubborn stains that won’t come off with regular scrubbing, you may need to invest in an acid cleaner or acid stain remover. These types of cleaners will cut through tough stains such as rust and mineral deposits but do not use them too often as they will break down the concrete’s surface over time. You should always wear protective gear when working around these types of cleaners so that you don’t accidentally splash yourself with chemicals.

Be Careful

Safety is a crucial element when it comes to any project. For the DIY people, safety should always be a factor with both yourself and your property. It’s easy to come out just spraying everything, but that can lead to more damage than good if you don’t know what you’re doing.

For those that don’t have the right equipment or experience, hiring a professional concrete cleaning company is recommended. They know exactly how to safely treat your property. With years of experience, they’ll also know how to handle anything that could happen as well as some tricks for removing difficult stains. 

The cost of pressure washing ranges between $193 and $407 which is a great investment in restoring your property. Many times, having this done will make your home look like new again. There are many different ways to do a concrete cleaning including; power washing, acid etching, surface abrasion and more. Each method has its pros and cons so knowing what is best for your particular situation will help in making an informed decision on which type of job needs to be done.

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