How to Clean Concrete Patio – Many homeowners opt for concrete for their patio surface since it is relatively more manageable to clean than those made of wood.
Despite its hard exterior, however, concrete is deemed to be more porous.
It can also absorb liquid in no time, resulting in stubborn stains.
The surface texture of the cement patio also tends to have a lot of cracks where mosses, dirt, and other objects are able to accumulate.
In the following discussions, you will learn how to clean concrete patio and tackle any kind of dirt or hard-to-remove stains.
How to Clean Concrete Patio – Using the Pressure Washer
Many different methods can be done to clean cement patios. However, pressure washing is still the easiest way to maintain the cleanliness of hardscapes.
You can either purchase or rent a pressure washer and clean the patio yourself or hire a cleaning service that provides a power washing service.
If you want to clean the concrete patio yourself, you cannot just straight away use the pressure washer.
Here are some important tips on how to clean concrete patio using a pressure washing machine:
Prepare the area
First, you need to remove loose objects such as stones and debris from the patio. If your patio is next to doors or walls, make sure to cover them with a tarpaulin sheet.
Also, make sure your patio has a slope where the water can flow.
The patio is everyone’s favorite space at home to lounge on, so there must be lots of outdoor furniture in there.
When you want to clean the surface with a pressure washer, get your furniture out of the patio so that you won’t damage them.
With a degreaser, you will be able to remove stubborn stains that can’t even be removed by using a pressure washing device.
Thus, it’s important to apply a degreasing cleaning product before pressure washing the hardscape.
Some devices are even equipped with an accessory that helps you scrub the degreasing product against the surface.
Prepare the pressure washer
There is a wide variety of power washers. Consider using a 3000 PSI pressure washer as it works really well in cleaning concrete surfaces.
Each device comes with instructions, if yours come with one, consider following the instructions.
However, in general, you should use the pressure hose to connect the device with the spray wand and use a garden hose to connect the device to the water source.
The pressure washer also comes with a number of different nozzles for various purposes. Avoid using the high-pressure one if your patio surface is made of brick.
Clean the surface
Here’s how to clean concrete patio with a power washer in the right way: always start from the top end of the surface and down to the direction where the water flows.
Point the sprayer over the surface, press down the trigger, and continuously sweep the spray across the surface. Apply the detergent and leave it to stand for approximately a half-hour before rinsing it.
Rinse and seal the surface
After around a half-hour, switch the pressure washing machine to rinse mode and use high-pressure spray.
Use the sweeping method on step 4, thoroughly wash away the cleaning product, and remove any stubborn stains you might find with the spray.
After the patio surface has dried, use a sealant product to fend off stains. Use a roller to apply the sealant over the concrete and let it dry for one full day before you can start using your patio again.
How to Clean Concrete Patio – Using the Vinegar
Vinegar makes a perfect concrete patio cleaner.
Due to its acidity, vinegar should be mixed with warm water with a ratio of 50/50 in order to prevent damaging the surface.
Even so, you can use full strength to remove stubborn stains and rinse them with water.
Here are 3 options for using vinegar on how to clean concrete patio:
- Full strength vinegar for stubborn stains: It is important to note that you can only apply this option for cleaning extremely dirty surfaces since it’s very strong and can damage the patio surface over time. Also, do not ever leave the vinegar for more than five minutes on the concrete.
- A mixture of vinegar and baking soda for light stains: This option is relatively more eco-friendly. It only contains less acid since the baking soda acts as an acid neutralizer. Opt for this option to clean fresh stains on your concrete.
- 50/50 warm water and vinegar: This option is the most popularly used combination to get rid of liquid or food stains on hardscapes. It’s highly recommended for daily cleaning since the acidity has been neutralized by the water so that it won’t damage the concrete.
Vinegar tends to have a strong odor.
Therefore, consider adding essential oil to neutralize the strong smell.
This way, the concrete surface of your patio will have a pleasant fragrance.
For more manageable application, transfer the mixture of vinegar and essential oils to a spray bottle.
Before cleaning the patio floor, thoroughly sweep the surface first.
Also, make sure your pets and children stay off the concrete you are about to clean.
If there is any plant in the patio, cover them with a plastic or water them since water will protect them against the vinegar.
Vinegar, however, may have the same effects on any plant even though it’s not a toxic killer for algae or weeds.
Here’s step-by-step on how to clean concrete patio using vinegar:
- Clean the concrete with water to get it ready. Consider using warm water or soapy water to thoroughly remove dust or other objects from the floor. Use a spin mop to get a better result.
- Choose one of the three options of using vinegar for cleaning concrete. Then, apply it over the stained area and make sure it gets entirely covered. Afterward, use a scrub brush to scrub the stained floor to remove stains on the surface.
- After finished scrubbing the patio floor, depending upon the amount of the vinegar you use in the mixture, it would be best to leave it to rest for around 10 to 20 minutes before washing it. This will let the cleaning product fully absorb into the hardscapes, so the vinegar is able to work effectively.
- With a mop and clean water, preferably warm water, thoroughly clean the patio floor. As mentioned in the previous paragraph, the strength of the concrete floor will decrease over time if you let the vinegar sit on the floor for far too long. Therefore, it is also preferable to immediately rinse it within 20 minutes. Mop the floor repeatedly if you find the smell of vinegar is still too strong.
- If you find stains that hard to remove, consider using full strength vinegar and directly apply it to the stained area and use a rigid brush to scrub them.
How to Clean Concrete Patio – Using the Bleach
Using bleach to clean the patio surface should be the last option you have to choose when dealing with stubborn stains.
Essentially, bleach is a very effective solution for removing any kinds of objects on your concrete patio.
Yet, it is not the best option for everyone.
Either way, by following the instructions on how to clean concrete patio using bleach below, there shouldn’t be any damage when you use this bleach cleaning solution.
- Always remove all the outdoor furniture from your patio before starting to clean the floor with bleach. Also, make sure to thoroughly sweep the surface to remove any loose object.
- Wet the whole surface of the patio floor using clean water before you can start applying the bleach. You cannot just wet the floor, but you should also remove any remaining loose object when you wet the surface. Also, make sure to wet the corner areas of your patio.
- Next, mix water and the bleach cleaning product in a watering tank. Use a ratio of 5:1, but you can adjust the cleaner’s intensity, depending on how dirty your patio surface is. However, a mixture of 5:1 should be enough to thoroughly clean and kill most of the algae and weeds on the patio.
- Apply the mixture of bleach and water to the wet floor. Use a brush to make sure that the combination is equally covering the surface. Also, make sure to brush the corner areas of your patio. Once you finished applying the cleaning solution, leave it to stand on the cement patio for about a quarter-hour before rinsing it off.
- With clean water, rinse the cleaning product, and consider using a brush as well while you rinsing the floor. That way, you can remove any kind of stains, even the tough ones. Don’t worry if there is still remaining cleaner as it won’t damage the floor.
That’s all about how to clean concrete patio using three different methods.
Many cleaning solutions can remove stubborn stains on your patio floor.
Suppose you wish to make a cleaning product that is budget-friendly and eco-friendly for the concrete patio.
In that case, vinegar is certainly the cleaner solution you need.