Concrete steps may get stale, monotonous, and worn out over time. Here are five practical step suggestions to assist you if you want to give them a fresh, exciting look.
- Paint Them
Use exterior latex home paint if you want a simple and quick fix. Apply one coat of paint. Walk on it once it has dried for 24 hours, then wait another 24 hours for it to cure.
Alternately, add an additional coat of paint for increased resistance to foot traffic and other environmental factors like rain and snow. You can choose to add a second coat in a different color, but make sure the first coat is completely dry before doing so to avoid getting a blotchy and ugly splotchy step.
Instead of removing it and repaving it, spray painting the top of your concrete detail is another approach to improve its appearance. After the winter is through, just reapply the paint to the top.
You might also use acrylic cement finish paint, which is readily available at your neighborhood home improvement store, to resurface the top of your steps. To resurface your step and restore its new-looking appearance, select from a variety of textures and one coat finishes, including hammered metal, broken ice, and shingle.
Alternately, if you’re making new stairs, you can add a few ounces of latex house paint to the concrete mixture after it has been poured into the form and before using a wood float to level the top. After giving it enough time to dry, add another coat using only water. The improved adhesion caused by the moisture addition keeps your painted concrete step looking newer for longer, but be careful not to over-apply or over-saturate the mixture as this could undermine the base.
- Make Your Concrete Steps a Different Color
Your steps can also be painted a different color to make them appear brand-new. You will want a contractor like Dothan Premier Concrete Co. with experience grinding down to complete this.
Then, get a bag of colored cement that has already been mixed from a hardware store. Pour it into an empty bucket after combining it with water according to the instructions on the package. Apply one thin coat over the top of your current concrete step using a wood float or trowel. Before you walk on it, give it enough time to dry properly. After that, give it another 24 hours for curing.
Additionally, you might use a colored penetrating sealer to alter the color of your concrete step. Despite the fact that this is not a drastic approach, some would argue that it is less permanent than any of the first two options. It aids in defending your step against stains and scuffs brought by by regular use. Apply one thin layer of paint with a paintbrush or roller over the top of the current step and give it enough time to dry before using it again (after 24 hours).
- Utilize Tiles or Paving Stones
Paving stones or tiles are readily available at most home improvement stores and can be used to cover worn-out concrete step sections. Create a gorgeous mosaic or a border around a space using stones by sticking them in place with glue. Instead of gluing it down, you could instead use tiny stones or mosaic tiles to create a lovely pattern over the entire step.
The steps could easily be painted using a stencil. This is particularly helpful if you want to achieve a particular design or pattern. Install the stones or tiles first using glue, and then paint over them with the chosen colors.
- Texture Them
To give the concrete the weathered appearance that is common on outdoor patios, pound it with a sledgehammer first on one side, then the other. After applying the concrete texturing powder, go over the surface with a roller. The texturizing powder will penetrate the hammering-made crevices and give the surface a rougher, more intriguing appearance. The polish resembles terrazzo but is easily accomplished at home.
A paint roller with texture can also be used to texturize concrete steps. In order to help the concrete surface better take the color, use an acid solution to help etch the surface.
As an alternative, consider making your steps appear made of stone. While your concrete mixture is still wet, add pebbles or rocks to make them imbedded in the concrete’s surface. By incorporating different gravel hues for contrast, you can get more inventive.
- Highlight Them
Dark, damp concrete should be placed down and left to dry overnight. Use a blow torch to swiftly sweep over the surface in one direction until you achieve the flaming red and orange appearance of lava rock. Immediately after, apply sealer to prevent streaks. If this sounds like too much of an investment for your budget or schedule, add more gloss to light-colored cured concrete by brushing on some metallic glaze.