Steps // How to Resurface Worn Concrete
1 ×

Clean the Concrete

 
Step One // How to Resurface Worn Concrete

Clean the Concrete

pressure-washing the concrete walkway to prepare for resurfacing
Photo by Ryan Benyi

While wearing heavy boots and protective glasses, blast off surface dirt with a gas-powered pressure washer that can reach at least 3,500 psi. Fit the wand with a 25-degree fan tip, and hold it 6 to 8 inches from the surface as you clean the concrete with slow, even sweeps. To remove mildew or algae, use a concrete wash.

 
2 ×

Patch Spalled Areas

 
Step Two // How to Resurface Worn Concrete

Patch Spalled Areas

patching the concrete walkway to fill in the spalling before resurfacing
Photo by Ryan Benyi

While the concrete is damp, mix up enough resurfacer to fill any divots. Combine 1 part water with 7 parts resurfacer in a 5-gallon bucket; blend with a paddle mixer attached to a corded drill. Fill the recesses with resurfacer, and smooth with a finish trowel. Go to the next step when you can stand on the patch without indenting it, in about 2 to 5 hours.

 
3 ×

Spread the Resurfacer

 
Step Three // How to Resurface Worn Concrete

Spread the Resurfacer

pouring the resurfacer onto the concrete walkway with a 5-gallon bucket
Photo by Ryan Benyi

Fill the walkway joints with peel-and-stick foam weatherstripping, and dampen the concrete if necessary. The resurfacer is workable for about 20 minutes, so mix just half a bag of powder with 5½ cups of water at a time. That's enough to cover two sidewalk slabs, or about 17 square feet. Pour it on the walk.

 
4 ×

Trowel It Out

 
Step Four // How to Resurface Worn Concrete

Trowel It Out

trowelling the concrete resurfacer on the walkway in order to spread evenly
Photo by Ryan Benyi

Spread the resurfacer until it's between 1/8 and ¼ inch thick. For a slip-resistant finish, wait 5 minutes, then sweep a nylon-bristle broom across it, 90 degrees to the foot traffic. Remove the weatherstripping after 20 minutes. Wait 6 hours before walking on it. Cover only if rain threatens in the meantime.

 

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