What to Do With an Ugly & Damaged Concrete Patio

It is quite a challenge having to maintain outdoor concrete surfaces. A concrete patio, for example, is often exposed to harsh weather changes. While it is possible for it to acquire damage and lose its original beauty, it is not impossible to make it look as good as it was, if not better. Here are things you can do to breathe new life to ugly and damaged patios:

Resurface with a Coating or Overlay

One of the most popular and decorative solutions is to resurface the concrete patio. Resurface means to add a new layer to the damage patio. A stamped overlay is applied thinly on the surface and then stamped by mat or by hand with your chosen pattern. Some of the popular patterns include:

  • Slate
  • Flagstone
  • Brick
  • Cobblestone
  • Ashlar
  • And more

Another resurfacing solution is a spray knockdown finish. A professional concrete contractor sprays the acrylic concrete coating on the old patio and then knocks them down manually with a trowel. The effect is a textured surface that is highly heat-reflective.

Refinish with Concrete Staining


If the surface of the patio is still intact but with ugly stains and discolored areas, then refinishing it would be an ideal solution. Acid or water-based stains can update the look of a concrete patio almost instantly. These do not peel, flake, or peel, especially if a sealer is applied on the stained concrete.

  • Acid stain – This is a reactive stain that creates random effects and shades of the chosen color. The result is a mottled, stone-like look that is unique and can never be replicated. The colors of this solution are semi-translucent.
  • Water-based stain – This is a non-reactive solution that produces opaque, more consistent colors. This is a perfect choice if you plan to customize the patio with a pattern or image.

Score, Engrave, or Cut

Scoring, engraving, or saw-cutting a concrete patio is an effective method of dealing with working cracks. Working cracks are those that keep recurring and are caused by something unstoppable, like soil movement. Cutting along the direction of the cut gives the slab more space for movement. As a result, it does not create more cracks. Just make sure that an experienced contractor does the cutting for it to be decorative and efficient in addressing the cracks. Popular designs for scoring or engraving are vines, swirls, repeated patterns, and the like.

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