A popular choice among homeowners to construct their patio, concrete finds use because it is inexpensive, low maintenance, and durable. However, that does not save concrete from stains. It does need cleaning from time to time. Whether you want to spring clean the concrete patio or just scrub some parts of the concrete patio to remove the stains, here are some of the easiest ways to have a spotless concrete patio.
Maintaining and Cleaning Concrete Patios
Ensure to clean your concrete patio (even if it’s a small apartment patio) at least once a year to keep it in perfect shape. Remove the items that you have kept on the patio, like furniture or potted plants. Do spot testing to ensure no damage or discoloration, and then you can go ahead cleaning the patio. Care should be taken to repair the chips and cracks before you begin the process of cleaning.
Once you have removed all the items from the patio and repaired the cracks, it is now time to start cleaning.
1. Use a pressure washer
A pressure washer can be put to great use if you wish to clean your concrete patio effectively. It ensures that your patio stays speck clean to create an aesthetically pleasing place for you and your entire family. The major disadvantage of a pressure washer is that it is costly, and its purpose may not be enough to justify its price. Also, if the pressure washer is used by someone who does not know how to operate it well, it can damage your home. It could cause severe damage to your concrete patio, like degradation of the surface and formation of pitting lines. Worry not, because there are many other ways to keep your patio clean and fresh
2. Remove the loose debris
You may notice some debris and loose dirt on the concrete patio. In this case, all you need to do is sweep the area or spray it clean. Regularly sweeping the patio will not let the grime and dust build up. The dirt can be swept away till it stays loose and has not crawled into the patio through slits. If the dirt has started to seep in, you can still use a hose to clean it up; conditionally, the dirt should not be lying for long. However, if you were not regular and the grime happens to build up in your patio, you can use some cleaning solutions to get rid of the dirt. Commercial cleaners let you clean the grime build-up or any fungal growth that may have occurred in the concrete patio. Check the chemical that you use. Harsh chemicals may change the color of your concrete patio. It could even affect you and the plants if breathed in. If you are worried about the side effects of using chemical cleaners, then there are some household cleaners that you may want to try out. These are safe and environmentally friendly too.
3. Use vinegar
Vinegar is a safe and natural cleaner, perfect for cleaning your concrete patio. It is highly effective in removing stains. You need to mix vinegar with an equal amount of water and then use it to remove stains from your concrete patio. If your concrete patio is heavily stained, then you may need to use a hard broom with a bristle or a firm scrub brush to scrub on the soiled area. If you still find yourself struggling to remove the stain, then spray some undiluted vinegar and let it sit for ten minutes. When the vinegar sets in, you can scrub it again. This should allow you to remove the tough stains with ease. Once done, use a hose and spray the debris and the cleanser from the concrete patio.
4. Use baking soda
Baking soda is another effective ingredient commonly available in most kitchens that helps to clean your concrete patio. It is environmentally friendly and natural. For any soiled concrete surface, use a mix of a cup of baking soda in a gallon of water to create a cleaning solution. If the stain is hard, then adding a little bit of liquid detergent helps. If you want to clean the patio, then spray this solution throughout. Alternatively, if you’re going to clean just a particular area, spray the stain solution. Let this solution sit on for 20 minutes letting the detergent and the baking soda break down the grime and dirt. Now go ahead and scrub the patio. You will immediately see the grime rising with ease. Once done, use a hose to rinse off the solution and the dirt, and you have a clean patio right in front of your eyes.
5. Use Bleach
Bleach may not be the best solution, but if the stains on your concrete patio are rigid and do not come out with the methods mentioned above, then you may want to try out the bleach. Bleach is dangerous both for children and pets. Thus if you are using bleach to clean your concrete patio, do it with utmost care using the proper protective methods like wearing gloves not to let the bleach come in contact with your skin and wearing masks to avoid inhaling the fume.
All you need to do is mix bleach and water in equal parts and put the solution in a spray bottle so that the bleach does not get concentrated in one area. Spray the solution on the dirt and let it stay for 10 minutes. Take care not to spray a lot of the bleach solution on your patio; else, the liquid could flow down to your garden, which can then damage your plants. After ten minutes, use a stiff scrubber to remove the stains. The bleach solution is very powerful, which will make it easy for you to pull out the stains. Rinse the area adequately with a hose so that the stain and the chemical are removed.
Along with removing the dirt and stains, bleach also lets you get rid of the molds. It kills weeds and any unwanted plants that may have started to grow. You want to be careful that the bleach is not sprayed on the plants you wish to raise. Let the concrete patio dry before you move the objects back. Please get rid of the moisture because it could cause unwanted fungal growth. Ammonia can also be used to clean the concrete patio. However, you should never mix ammonia and bleach; else, it will create a fume that can be very dangerous if inhaled.
6. Use Muriatic Acid
Muriatic Acid fights tough stains, especially on concrete. It is useful if your concrete patio has rust and grout. The material is highly toxic, so you need to be extra careful when using it. Wear eyewear and gloves and follow all the instructions of the manufacturer when using them. Use it with all the precautions. Muriatic Acid will prove to be a fantastic cleaning solution removing tough stains from your concrete patio easily.
7. Use Trisodium Phosphate (TSP)
Trisodium Phosphate or TSP needs to be mixed with water to make an effective cleaning solution. Then, all you need to do is scrub the solution on the stained area using a brush. This is enough to remove the stains. Once the stain is removed completely, use a hose to rinse off the area to remove the grime and the cleaning solution.
Cleaning the patio is neither a costly nor a tedious affair. You need to know about the right tools and solutions that can help in removing tough stains from your concrete patio to keep it clean, fresh, and free from any unwanted germs and growth. The outdoor concrete patio is continuously exposed to harsh weather conditions. Still, with a little care, you can maintain your concrete patio for many decades to come.