In the garden as at home, you like what is beautiful, original, what looks like you. Stamped concrete is a simple and inexpensive way to personalize and beautify your surfaces. Particularly suited to the exterior, the “imprinted concrete” can be applied wherever you want to add an aesthetic touch. The only limit to its decorative abilities may be… your imagination!
Stamped concrete: a very versatile decorative coating, both simple and durable.
Simplicity and diversity
This coating technique relies on simplicity: it involves applying molds to fresh concrete to create a relief imprint with the most beautiful effect. From this simple technique, almost everything becomes imaginable in terms of decoration! The great diversity of molds and colors allows you to customize all kinds of surfaces, according to your personal taste and the use of the space to be decorated.
Easy to make, this type of decorative concrete can be applied to all kinds of spaces: terrace, swimming pool, garage, patio, porch, veranda, house, garden, driveway, public space, sidewalk, roundabouts, company, site industrial, etc Everything is possible, everything is possible!
All-terrain and always unique
Stamped concrete is the champion of exterior surfaces, due to its great resistance to all climates. But it is also perfectly all-terrain: interior or exterior surfaces, horizontal or vertical, concrete adapts to all desires. Capable of imitating natural surfaces such as wood, tiles, paving or rock, it offers an elegant and economical alternative to the usual coatings. Its ability to go from inside to outside makes it possible to harmonize a construction. Whether old or contemporary, stamped concrete can, depending on your choice, bring modernity while respecting the charm of the old. In reality, this technique is available indefinitely and meets all expectations.
Original and customizable
The immense diversity of molds and colors available is your best creative asset. It’s up to you to imagine the effect to be given to this or that surface. You can design a swimming pool border with sand beige parquet, an industrial rock effect wall, an old wood terrace, an anthracite paved driveway… Be inventive; the catalog of dies and colors is extensive enough to bring all your ideas to life.
Strong and durable
One of the great advantages of stamped concrete is its robustness against the weather, which makes it a particularly durable exterior coating. Not only can it withstand rain, humidity or frost without damage, but it is also not afraid of heat and sun. This resistance to climatic variations makes it an ideal candidate to blend into any landscape, regardless of the regional climate. It does not fade in the sun and does not crack in the thaw. Its elastic fibers and its expansion joints make it resistant to cracks and the wear and tear of time. In addition, a surface hardener allows it to withstand any impact, whether from falling objects or vehicle traffic, without damage. As for the colors, if the work is well done, they retain their original appearance without ever fading. In summary, a stamped concrete surface is made to last at least 30 years. The better it is maintained, the longer it will stand the test of time.
Pleasant and comfortable to use
In the garden, stamped concrete does not allow itself to be invaded by moss and small grasses. Always clean, it also offers thermal comfort that allows you to walk barefoot on it without fear of getting burned in summer. If we add that it is naturally non-slip, stamped concrete becomes the best friend of swimming pools and beaches! Integrated into the concrete, an abrasive additive guarantees non-slip use. There are also non-slip powders that can be added to the final varnish for total safety. Comfort, nothing but comfort!
Stamped concrete in 10 steps:
Stamped concrete can therefore adapt to all needs, bringing a note of elegance to all kinds of spaces. For floors, it can be used both in creation and in renovation. In short, it is available indefinitely, meeting the needs of individuals as well as companies or public spaces.
We can entrust the realization of a stamped concrete to a specialized company. But, with the right equipment, you can also make your own “imprinted concrete” yourself for simple surfaces, provided you follow the steps below.
1 – Check the climatic conditions
Ideally, it is better to start the work in the early morning, it will take time. We avoid this kind of work in winter, but you can start between March and November, provided that the weather is favorable (avoid frost, rain or high heat during the two or three days of work).
2 – Prepare the site
First of all, it is necessary to prepare the support that will receive the concrete. This involves stripping and stabilizing the ground, formwork and demarcation of the surfaces, calculation of the levels for the evacuation slopes and the laying of welded mesh, intended to reinforce the solidity of the concrete. It will have been necessary beforehand to clean the ground of all debris and to plug any holes.
3 – Pour the screed
Prepared with a cement mixer (in the case of a small surface) or simply delivered using a mixer, the fresh concrete must be poured into the formwork. This type of concrete is enriched with resistance fibers, essential to ensure its resistance to cracks and allow it to deform without breaking. The slopes allow the evacuation of rainwater. Provide a screed 8 to 12 cm thick.
4 – Smooth the concrete
Good smoothing is essential at this stage of the project.
5 – Apply the colored hardeners
According to the choice of color made upstream, it is a question of sprinkling the hardener of the desired color on the smoothed surface. Not only will this product give the concrete its color, but it also helps to make it more resistant on the surface. A new smoothing must then be carried out.
6 – Apply the colored release product
This new dusting over the entire surface is intended to prevent the concrete from sticking to the indentations.
7 – Apply the fingerprints
This is the moment when your surface will take on the appearance you imagined… The molds are placed and well printed (by walking on them); the chosen pattern is embedded in the concrete. At this stage, wait until the next day for the rest.
8 – Make the expansion joints
Made the next day, their role is essential since they are the ones that protect the stamped concrete from the undesirable effects of expansion or contraction.
9 – Clean the concrete
At high pressure, water cleaning removes residual release agent.
10 – Apply a protective varnish
The final stage of your construction site, the application of the varnish aims to make your concrete completely waterproof and much more durable and resistant. This is the time to apply a stain-resistant resin, which will help you maintain the surface much more easily, especially if it is exposed to oil or gasoline residues…
Mini budget, maxi effect!
Here is a decorative solution that will not ruin you. Even if you use a specialized company to carry out your stamped concrete work, the estimate will not cost you an arm and a leg. These are simple techniques to implement and quick projects, which do not last more than a few days (depending on the planned surface).
The cost of a printed concrete coating is calculated per square meter. Above all, the price can vary depending on the type of surface and the accessibility of the site (for example, to bring a router nearby). The rates generally oscillate between 60 and 150 € per m2 and are always competitive when compared to other types of exterior coverings. The easiest way, if you go through a professional, is to ask for a location scouting before drawing up an estimate.
Then don’t forget tomaintain your stamped concrete surface. No need to let dirt reduce its beautiful effect. A little mop from time to time for routine cleaning, and every three or four years the application of a varnish in aqueous phase will keep it in its new state.