The harsh weather of the winter months can really take its toll on decorative or stamped concrete. Cold temperatures, precipitation, and de-icers can all cause your concrete to erode or crack. Fortunately, winter weather doesn't have to ruin your concrete surfaces. With the right tools and knowledge, you can ensure that your concrete surfaces last throughout winter without damage.
If you aren't sure how to care for your concrete surfaces, don't worry. Here are four tips to help you care for your concrete during the harsh weather of winter:
1. Remove Debris
Make sure that you remove debris on a regular basis throughout the winter. Dead leaves, dirt, and debris combined with wet weather can easily cause staining. So even if your surfaces are sealed, make sure you sweep the concrete weekly. If the weather permits, you might also want to rinse the surface.
2. Remove Snow
If you live in a particularly snowy area, make sure that you remove snow on a regular basis. If snow is left to pile up, it will compact into ice. Once you have ice, it will be very difficult to remove. Additionally, melting snow can also cause issues. When the snow melts, the water can get underneath the sealer and cause further issues such as cracking and crumbling. So try to shovel your surfaces daily during snowy weather—if not more.
3. Avoid De-Icers
Snow and ice may be slick, but you should avoid using de-icers. The chemicals and salt in de-icers can easily eat away at not only the ice, but also the concrete. If you need traction on your concrete, try using loose sand. This will give you the traction you need, without causing damage to your surface.
4. Apply a Sealant
Finally, make sure that you apply a sealant before the winter weather hits. This sealer will help to keep out dirt, debris, and water. While not foolproof, it does help keep the concrete in good condition, so always have concrete sealed before winter. You can do this yourself or you can call a concrete contractor like Hofmann Concrete Construction LLC to do it for you.
Caring for concrete during winter might seem like a hassle, but it is necessary in order to keep it in good condition. Use these tips, along with the help of a concrete contractor, to help you maintain your concrete surfaces throughout winter—and all other seasons of the year, as well.