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Concrete Landscaping Maintenance Tips
Concrete landscaping designs can add the perfect touch to your home’s outdoor setting and boost its aesthetic appeal. However, for those who’ve had a concrete landscape design for some time now probably understand the frustrations that can come with it. They require a great deal of maintenance, especially if you want your concrete foundation to go the distance and be in excellent condition even after a decade.
Although no one like’s general upkeep, it’s highly recommended that you stay on your concrete’s toes and keep it in healthy condition. You’ll be thankful you did. In reality, it’s not that much work. This obviously depends on how much surface area your concrete landscape actually covers, but more importantly it comes down to how well and how often you maintain that landscape. The longer you wait in between maintenance checkups, the longer you’ll spend if you procrastinated.
So, what are you waiting for?
Power washing is a necessary routine that you need to get in the habit of doing. Routine cleaning and power washing will stretch out the life of your concrete landscape and keep it consistently strong. The best part is it’s so simple. You literally just stand there and let the highly pressurized water do all the work.
Cracks can appear from a few ways; 1) When snow or ice rests on concrete for a long period of time, cracks can start to form due to the moisture seeping into the concrete and expanding, 2) Mildew and mold build up from dirty concrete, 3) Weak landscape foundation. Before repairing a crack, make sure to heed the first step in the concrete maintenance process. If you fill in a crack without power washing it first, it will only form again. Ensure longevity with your crack repair by cleaning it first.
Moisture is concrete’s worst enemy, at least from trapped or stagnant moisture, such as from water without proper drainage or from snow. Concrete sealers create a special coating that block out moisture and prevent it from seeping into and ruining your concrete. Before sealing your concrete, though, make sure to power wash it first in order for the sealer to form a tighter bond with the concrete.
Although keeping up with your concrete landscaping maintenance is vital to a long lasting foundation, sometimes you need to keep an eye on the areas around it. If certain areas around your concrete landscape are weak or you notice erosion starting to occur, take the time to analyze how to prevent erosion from continuing to occur or how to fortify the ground around your foundation. Even if you have to hire a professional, you’ll be thankful you did.
Avoid De-Icers/Shovel Snow:
It’s important to avoid heavily relying on de-icers when dealing with snow or ice, especially if this is the first winter your concrete is experiencing. The chemicals from de-icers, even salt, can weaken the concrete’s foundation. It’s best to shovel snow for the first winter and then move onto using just salt. For ice, you can use sand or some other form of mineral to gain traction if traversing on the concrete. Before a concrete’s first winter, make sure to use a concrete sealer to protect and fortify it against snow and ice.
Avoid Large Vehicles/Heavy Objects:
This applies mostly to concrete driveways, since they tend to experience the most use. Large vehicles, especially ones that are stationary for long periods of time, can put more wear and tear on your concrete. If possible, park them elsewhere around your home or at least move them from time to time in order to relieve the stress the concrete receives. This is particularly important for newly installed concrete foundations. The longer concrete has to settle the stronger it will be over time.
Careful with Your Lawn Care:
The final way to maintain a healthy concrete landscape is to be careful when/if applying chemical products to your lawn. Any run off from these products can erode and weaken its foundation.
Written by Robert Thompson, owner of TLC Lawncare& Landscaping, where they are one of the preferred concrete contractors Columbia MO has to offer. When it comes to decorative or stamped patios, TLC is here to help!