So you’ve got a new concrete driveway? Congratulations! Concrete driveways are a wise investment for any property because they are so durable and easy to maintain. That doesn’t mean, however, that you shouldn’t do any kind of maintenance at all. In order to preserve your investment and ensure that your new concrete driveway looks amazing for as long as possible, there are a few little things that you can (and should) do.
General driveway care and maintenance
If you have used a professional and reputable concrete driveway contractor, then your driveway will have had a transparent concrete sealer applied to the surface to improve its appearance and performance. Your job therefore, is to make sure that this concrete sealant remains intact and in excellent condition. Here are four things to take note of:
Tyre tracking: Tyre tracking, which is caused by vehicles taking sharp turns on your newly sealed driveway, must be avoided, as those marks are extremely difficult to remove.
Citrus based cleaners: Avoid citrus-based cleaners (which are essentially acidic) because this will damage the concrete sealant.
Heavy equipment: Avoid placing heavy construction items, such as concrete mixers or other construction traffic, on your newly sealed driveway. This is particular important to remember if you are getting renovations or other work done on other parts of the house.
Power steering scuffs: Power steering marks caused by turning your steering wheel while the car is stationary can also leave marks on the driveway. To prevent this from happening, always turn the steering wheel only when the car is moving.
Maintenance of the concrete sealant
Sealants are made of a material that forms a hard coating on surfaces that are porous. On your driveway, it is essential for protecting the concrete beneath, and keeping your driveway clean and properly sealed is the best way to ensure that it remains in the best condition possible.
Your concrete driveway contractor should be able to advise you on maintenance, as well as how often you will need to reapply the sealant. This varies from driveway to driveway, as it depends on factors such as weather conditions and the amount of wear and tear the driveway is subject to.
As a general rule, however, experts recommend reapplying the sealant around once every two years, or when you start to notice that it is showing signs of wear, whichever comes first.
Cleaning of the driveway and stain removal
It is inevitable of course that dirt will accumulate on your driveway over time, but the good news is cleaning your concrete driveway is easy. Pressure washers are excellent for this purpose, although you will need to make sure that you use the correct cleaning solution – again, your concrete driveway contractor will be able to recommend something.
Whether it is dirt, oil, diesel or gasoline, make sure that you clean up any spills as quickly as possible. Hot water and an alkaline solution are generally best, as this will not only remove oil and dirt, but also soot marks from exhaust pipes.
Once you’ve given your driveway a good wash, wait for it to dry before giving it a sweep to clear away any dried up dirt, leaves or other vegetation. It is also important to sweep the driveway regularly to prevent moss from growing. Ultimately, keeping your concrete driveway looking good doesn’t have to be a tedious chore; a little effort is all it takes, and the results are certainly worth it.