Sacramento Concrete Staining

by Jon Nunan

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Painting & Staining

If you're looking for a tough but beautiful addition to your home in Sacramento, concrete staining is an option for you. Appropriate for many situations, stained concrete is showing up in some pretty unexpected places. Along with typical concrete installations like porches, patios, walkways, and paths, finding stained concrete in living rooms, kitchens, and bathrooms is becoming more common. With the wide variety of appearances that are made possible by concrete stain, Sacramento homeowners will have options to spare; for surfaces that need to be as attractive as they are durable, stained concrete is a choice that will hold up well and look good doing it.

How Concrete Stain Works
Concrete staining is a bit different than wood staining. Instead of dyeing the surface a different color (as is the case with wood), true concrete stain causes a chemical reaction on the surface of the concrete that changes its color. This means that it won't chip away or wash off; since concrete staining actually alters the color of the surface, the change in pigment is permanent.

Sacramento Concrete Staining Indoors
Though not traditionally an indoor material, concrete is being used more and more for interiors in new construction because of its cost-effectiveness, durability, and its versatility during installation. Newer houses and condos often utilize concrete as a flooring material in living areas around the house as well as the more conventional basement and laundry room settings. By using concrete stain, Sacramento homeowners will be able to personalize and customize concrete in these areas and alleviate the dull, gray appearance of raw concrete spaces.

For some homes in Sacramento, concrete stain is used not just on floors but on counter surfaces, too. Though the idea of a concrete counter might sound a bit off-putting at first, once you see one up close, there will be little question why some homeowners prefer this material to even granite or marble. The fact is that a stained concrete counter will look and perform to the standards of natural stone, but is easier to customize to an individual's specific tastes. As an added bonus, while granite and marble often have to be installed in several pieces (creating seams and breaking up the counter's continuity), concrete counters can be poured in place, making a seamless surface.

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Drawbacks of Concrete Staining in Sacramento
Though it offers a number of ways to enhance your property, concrete stain is not without its drawbacks. When handled by a skilled professional, concrete stain can be used very effectively to brighten up even the dullest slab; however, when used by someone who's less than experienced, the results can be less than stunning (as well as permanent). For even the most serious do-it-yourselfers in Sacramento, concrete staining is a job that's better left to the pros.

Concrete stain can change the color of any concrete, but it is generally considered risky to stain concrete that's been around for a while. Despite the fact that preparing old concrete for staining can be expensive and difficult, without the knowledge of the particular mix used to form the existing concrete, the effect the stain will have can be somewhat unpredictable. For the best results, you should explain to your contractor that you want to stain your concrete ahead of time so preparing it for the staining process can begin before it is poured.

Jon Nunan is a freelance writer who draws on his experience in construction, ranging from landscaping to log home building, for his articles on home improvement.