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Imprinted Concrete Problems

Pattern Imprinted Concrete can look beautiful when installed properly, however when problems occur it can be far more complicated than the refurbishment of block paving. This is because concrete is laid as one structure where-as each block can be individually lifted, concrete cannot!

There are certain problems with Pattern Imprinted Concrete that can be fairly straight forward to remedy, however certain issues require more experience and knowledge by the refurbishment specialist, in order to carry out a successful refurbishment regarding aesthetics and durability.

Conversley a well installed PIC area should only require a wash and seal to replenish the appearance, which is a relatively quick, effective and straight forward process. Generally much easier than Block paving of a similar age to refurbish..

 

 

 

 

It is recommended by Concrete and Sealant Manufacturers that PIC should be resealed between every 3- 5 years (sometimes sooner than 3 years on high wear areas) in order to maintain a resin rich surface. This will then offer a protection barrier on the concrete, the only thing that will wear is the sealant. If periodic sealcoating and maintenance is given to the area it should look as good in twenty years time as the day it was first installed. A similar analogy would be varnishing woodwork etc.

Common Problems That We Encounter

Problem
The concrete has cracked! Interestingly over 70% of the PIC surfaces that we service have cracks. This should not be percieved as being the norm and should not be accepted! Usually this problem occurs when the concrete has been layed to thinly usually around 4 inches deep if the owner was lucky! The incorrect use of crack control and expansion gaps compounds and underminds the structural integrety! A Concrete drive or patio that has been layed to 6 inch deep should never crack! You may ask why many contractors lay it so thinly, the simple answer is inexperience and also cost! We strongly believe if you are having an area installed with Imprinted Concrete that you should invest a few more pounds for a better overall job. Nb: Concrete is one complete structure therefor if one section fails it will all have to be replaced!


This image below illustrates that a newly laid area can crack within a period of 2 weeks from being laid.



Problem
The concrete has gone white in areas, and looks a milky colour .



Solution
Moisture has been trapped between the sealant and the concrete, this could have happened for a couple of reasons. If the concrete has recentlty been installed then it is likely there is a moisture content within the concrete and the sealant had been applied to quickly. Applying a formulated chemical that will break down the existing sealant and release the moisture content should resolve this problem. If the concrete is over 28 days old then it is likely that the sealant is beginning to wear and a new seal coat will be required in the near future.

Problem
The surface of the Concrete has become chipped and damaged in small areas.

Solution
These can be coloured using a colour tint pigment and sealer.

Problem
The colour of the concrete has begin to fade over a period of time and looks a different colour to other areas of the concrete, certain areas are shiny where as others are dull.



Solution
Generally this is through loss of sealant in certain areas, the concrete will begin to fade were it has no protection from the sealant . It is recommended the area is treated soon to prevent any further fading!

Problem
Driveway has dulled in comparison to when it was first installed, however all the colour seems to be ok.



Solution
A fairly straight forward process to remedy, a new coat of Acrylic sealant is required to transform the driveway back to original appearance.

Problem
The colour is flaking away or the colour has faded .



Solution
Generally through excess antique release agent being left on the installation prior to sealing. There are two options to refurbish the area! Firstly the entire area should be stripped from the remaining sealant with a specifically formulated chemical with an accompanying jet washer. Then the surface should be chemically etched and then resealed when dry. This is a long and time consuming process, however will give a first class refurbishment. The second option is to recolour the areas affected with a mixture of tint and seal. This method will patch up the problem although it is not the long term solution as this process will need repeating again the next time the area is sealed.

The above notes are only intended to give the reader an idea of what the problem may be, please talk to Constructive before you make any decisions on the problem. There are an array of problems that can occur and to give an accurate decision it is recommended that we view the problems you are encountering first.

 

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