How to Clean Concrete Paved Surfaces
Recently in this space, we went over some general tips on how to clean and maintain paved asphalt surfaces of any kind on your property. From general cleaning to various stains or other spill risks, knowing how to clean these surfaces is valuable – and asphalt is just one example.
At Asphalt Masters, while many of our primary services for clients around Ogden and other parts of Utah are in the asphalt realm, we also offer concrete repair and pouring services for any client in need – plus tips on how to maintain these surfaces. Here’s a simple process for cleaning any paved concrete surface, a few words on how to clean tougher stains or spills, and a quick rundown of certain items or elements that should be avoided here.
Simple General Cleaning for Concrete Surfaces
From a general cleaning perspective, concrete is simple and straightforward. Especially if the concrete has been properly sealed, which is generally recommended as part of your overall maintenance service here. you will have no trouble cleaning these surfaces.
For simple sweeping, a soft bristle broom should be used – avoid hard bristles to prevent scratches or other abrasions on the surface of the concrete. For deeper cleaning, use an non-abrasive detergent and warm water with a cloth or mop to gently scrub. Here are some basic steps to follow for periodic concrete cleaning:
- Clear the area: Sweep away any dirt and debris on the surface before wetting it. This includes leaves, rocks, and other debris.
- Remove vegetation: If any plants have grown near the concrete, remove them and clear away any roots or other seeds that may have been left behind.
- Wash: Dilute an appropriate detergent with warm water and use a cloth or mop to wash the surface lightly. Do not scrub too harshly – this can damage the sealant on the concrete if it has already been sealed.
- Rinse: Thoroughly rinse the surface with clean water to remove any soap residue and dirt.
- Dry: Allow the concrete to air dry completely before moving on.
Tougher Stains or Spills
For tougher stains or spills, like grease, oil, rust, paint, wine etc., the first and most important element is prevention. And while basic sealing is one important way to help prevent such things, in many cases, the “best” thing you can do is to act quickly.
Whenever possible, do not allow any liquids or other substances to sit on a concrete surface for too long – this is especially true of oil-based or acidic liquids like wine. If something does spill onto the concrete, use a cloth or paper towel to absorb as much of the spilled liquid as you can. Next, dilute a detergent with warm water and use a scrub brush (non-metallic) to gently clean away any remaining stain. Rinse thoroughly with clean water and allow the surface to air dry before moving on.
Depending on the sort of spill or stain that takes place, there may be products specifically meant to help remedy it as well. For instance, there are several rust removal products or degreasers on the market that are designed for use on concrete – these can be helpful if you’re dealing with tougher or more stubborn stains.
Items Or Approaches to Avoid
When it comes to cleaning a concrete surface, there are some items that should always be avoided. These include:
- Harsh detergent: Avoid using any detergent or cleaner that contains chlorine, abrasives, or acids. These can damage the sealant on the concrete and may also harm nearby plants or animals.
- Metallic scrubbing brushes: Do not use metallic brushes, scouring pads, steel wool, etc., as these will scratch and damage the surface of the concrete.
- Power/pressure washers: Avoid using pressure washers or other similar power tools for cleaning the concrete. The high-pressure stream of water can damage sealants and cause cracks in the surface.
- Bleach: Do not use bleach or other harsh chemicals to clean concrete – these are often too caustic and can easily damage the surface.
- Hard scrapers: No matter how stubborn a given stain or spill is, do not use hard scrapers to try and remove it – this can easily cause scratches or other damage.
Ultimately, the basics of cleaning concrete are quite simple and straightforward. When in doubt, follow these steps and use products that are safe for concrete surfaces. And if you’re ever dealing with a tougher stain or spill, be sure to follow the steps recommended in this article and seek professional help if necessary.
For more on this, or to learn about any of our concrete or asphalt contractor services for clients around Ogden, UT and nearby areas, speak to our team at Asphalt Masters today.