Installing a concrete driveway is a valuable renovation project for your home. Like any installation, driveways can become damaged and degrade over time. Learn how to clean and maintain your concrete driveway and how this habit can preserve its value.
General Concrete Cleaning Tips
The first step to maintaining your concrete driveway is to clean it regularly. Artificial and natural substances, such as motor oil or algae, will erode the concrete’s surface over time if you don’t remove them. Thoroughly clean your driveway with a hose or pressure washer every six months or after potentially damaging events. For example, if you notice oil or other motor fluids on your driveway after servicing your vehicle, address the mess before it becomes a stain.
Remove Stains From Concrete
Spills and stains on your concrete driveway are bound to happen, and you can’t always prevent them. The most important thing to remember is to treat stains as soon as you notice them. The sooner you address stains, the better—if you delay the cleaning process, the stain could become permanent. If you accidentally spill oil or other chemicals on your driveway, you can soak them up with cat litter, sand, or other absorbents. Then, use a professional concrete cleaner and follow it up with a hose or power washer to remove the residue.
Address Small Cracks and Damage
One of the biggest tips for dealing with damaged concrete is to repair small areas of damage before they worsen. A small crack might not look like much, but water and soil can seep into that crack over time, making it wider and deeper. Consult a professional on how to repair small and medium-sized cracks. If you notice anything larger than surface-level damage, you may need to replace that section of your driveway entirely. This is why timeliness for crack repair is so important.
Re-Seal Your Concrete Driveway
Sealing your concrete driveway is the key to preserving its surface and promoting longevity. Sealants provide an extra layer of protection against cracking, the elements, plowing, and wear. If you experience cold or ice during the winter, you may use deicers on your driveway. They can corrode your driveway’s sealant, so inspect for damage and reapply the seal in the spring.
Caring for your concrete driveway is crucial to preserving its quality and the value it can add to your home. Practice these concrete driveway cleaning and maintenance habits for a longer-lasting driveway. The more you practice maintaining it now, the less likely you’ll have to repair or replace your concrete driveway later.