Colored concrete is an excellent way to add a lively aesthetic to your patio, walkway, or any other surface. It enhances the attractiveness of your property by adding a splash of color without looking gaudy. Before you start planning your colorful hardscape, however, there are several things you should know.
3 Things to Keep in Mind About Colored Concrete
1. The Water/Cement Ratio
Water has the highest influence on the outcome of colored concrete. If you want to get consistent coloring throughout the entire installation, you must achieve the right water to cement ratio. Water permanently alters the material; If you add more water to the concrete mix, color becomes lighter. It dilutes the cement paste and affects not only the coloring but also its strength and porosity.
2. Gray Coloring Affects Other Hues
The base color of most cement is some form of gray. The pigments you add to the base will undoubtedly overpower the gray hue, but the final color will usually be a dark, earthy tone. Lighter shades are possible to achieve, but they often require expensive white cement. By purchasing your concrete mix from a single, reputable ready-mix supplier, you will ensure each batch of concrete you use will have the same base color and a higher probability for consistent coloring.
3. Proper Cues
After you install the concrete, you have to begin the curing process to get the ideal finish. This is the final step to a colored concrete installation. Start by cleaning all the debris and residue from the surface. Then, use a membrane-forming cure created explicitly for colored concrete to achieve consistent drying and lasting color. If you do not cure the concrete, it can cause dusting, shrinkage cracks, and surface deterioration.
If you’re ready to start a colored concrete project, reach out to the reliable team at Builder’s Concrete East. As the go-to specialty ready-mix concrete supplier in Windham, CT, they offer an impressive selection of high-quality products for commercial and residential projects of all sizes, including driveways, sidewalks, and patios. Call (860) 456-4111 to speak with a helpful staff member, or visit them online for more details about the services they provide.