Concrete Patios & Decks
Concrete decks and patios provide you with durability, stability and an attractive appearance. Unlike wood and some other deck and patio materials, concrete is hardy, withstands the force of the elements and doesn’t need frequent retouching or maintenance. Before you get to work, however, there are some aspects of concrete decks or patios you have to make a decision on.
Concrete textures refer to the decorative sculpting of the concrete’s surface before the concrete has set. Texturing is a way to give your patio or deck a unique and attractive design without spending a ton of extra cash on extra materials or supplies.
Stamping is also referred to imprinted concrete, is a style designed to mimic another natural material. Stamping patterns include slate, stone, brick, flagstone and even wood.
Cobblestone stamping, for example, gives the appearance of worn cobblestone with rounded corners and irregular edges. English Yorkstone appears as naturally fractured stone, with broken and rounded edges and corners. Slate stamping, on the other hand, is even and straight, as is genuine slate itself. Limestone stamping is often done in a fan pattern, with a natural stone appearance and rounded corners.
If you’re looking for a textured appearance but don’t want something as permanent as stamping, you can try stenciling the deck or patio concrete instead. You pick the pattern you want and roll it out over the concrete surface. While stenciling is easier for those inexperienced at texturing, the patterns tend to have a less natural and more uniform look, with repeating sequences.
The type of texture you should use for your deck or patio largely depends on your personal preferences and design plans for the area. For example, if you’re going with a natural garden look, an English Yorkstone pattern may fit it better than cobblestone. Picture the different texture types covering the patio or deck in your mind before making your final selection.
Finishes also give your concrete deck or patio a design, but the process is simpler than what you’d have to do in texturing. The broom finish, for example, is done by brushing the concrete’s surface before it sets, leaving a lined pattern. The pattern will vary, depending on what type of broom you choose. Broom finishes are simple and used to provide a non-slip surface to the concrete.
You may use a trowel or float to provide a more decorative finish by making swirls, arcs or other designs in the concrete. A wood float will create a coarser texture, while a steel trowel or aluminum float will leave a smooth or medium surface.
A rock salt finish leaves behind little holes, providing a pattern and slip resistance. You scatter salt crystals used for water softeners over the concrete and roll the crystals into the concrete. The concrete must be power-washed once it sets, usually a full twenty-four hours later.
Once your deck or patio is set, don’t forget to buy furniture at Forrest Furnishing. Regardless of the texture or finish you choose, the right patio or deck furniture will complete your outdoor design.