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using concrete to create an outdoor living space

Do you want an area outside of your home where you can entertain guests? Maybe, you just want a patio where your family can gather for an outdoor dinner on a warm summer's night. If so, it is quite possible that you could have a concrete patio installed for less money than you might think. You can learn all about how concrete can be used for many of the elements of your patio. Concrete is easy to maintain and can last many, many years, so it is a great material to use in such a way. Visit my website to see how many things I have made out of concrete for my patio and learn the estimated cost of each item.

using concrete to create an outdoor living space

Design Options For Concrete Patio Flooring

by Eugene Mitchell

Many home owners put lots of planning into where the patio is going, what size it will be and how it'll be decorated. However, the literal foundation of the patio is its flooring. Concrete is a low-maintenance, durable option that is also highly attractive. Select a concrete patio floor that best complements your personal design style.

Colored Concrete

With colored concrete, contractors mix the dye directly with the wet concrete, giving the material a vivid hue. The colors range from rustic earth tones to vibrant primary colors. Because concrete is so customizable, colored concrete can be used to create very creative floors.

So, if you're planning a larger patio, you can use colored concrete to designate different areas, such as the lounge or the entertainment center. You can also have contractors use complementary colors as borders for steps or for the patio itself.

Stained Concrete

Stained concrete is also colored. However, instead of having the dye mixed in, contractors apply either an oil-based or water-based stain to a dried concrete slab. The result is more translucent that with the mixed dye method. The stains can also be re-applied later or applied to existing concrete.

Acid-based stains actually permeate the surface of the concrete and react with the hydrated lime in the original material. Color choices for acid-based stains are generally more limited than with water-based, typically earth tones and soft blues or greens. However, acid stains don't fade or chip.

Water-based stains offer far more color options. They also penetrate the original material, though not as deeply. The results of water-based stains range from translucent to opaque, affording you several design options.

Stamped Concrete

Contractors can use premade stamps to make concrete slabs resemble different materials. Many options are available, such as cobblestone, cracked earth and wood. According to the Concrete Network, concrete that has been stamped and stained to mimic a natural option is more economical than the original material.

Stamped concrete is often stained to finish the visual transformation. This type of effect is attractive for many styles of patios:

  • Mediterranean: Select cobblestone stamps and gray-based or earthy staining.
  • Traditional: Opt for a brick pattern and either red or gray staining.
  • Mission: Consider a cracked earth pattern and earthy tones.
  • Contemporary: Get creative with a custom pattern and vivid stains
  • Coastal: Choose natural stone stamping and stain that matches the local earth.

Concrete is such a versatile material that it can be used for any patio design. Whether you choose to get creative or channel the traditional, select a concrete style that best complements your home. To learn more, contact a company like Southwest Coating Solutions with any questions or concerns you have.