Diy Patio Installation Vs Hiring A Concrete Pro
If you choose to install your concrete patio yourself, you will save the $2 to $8 per square foot you would pay in professional labor. It can be difficult to install concrete properly, and with an improper installation, the surface could crack.
Unless you have significant experience in mixing and pouring concrete, finding concrete patio contractors near you tends to be the better choice.
To select the right patio contractor, research expected costs and gather quotes from a minimum of three professionals..
Perform some research online or talk to previous customers. That ensures you hire a concrete contractor with a good reputation who is qualified to complete your project.
How To Build & Install Patio Forms
1. A form is a frame, usually made from 2 Ã 4 lumber, laid around a project site to contain poured concrete and establish its thickness. Cut 2 Ã 4s to create a frame with inside dimensions equal to the total size of the project.
2. Use the masonâs strings that outline the project as a reference for setting form boards in place. Starting with the longest form board, position the boards so the inside edges are directly below the strings.
3. Cut several pieces of 2 Ã 4 at least 12″ long to use as stakes. Trim one end of each stake to a sharp point. Drive the stakes at 3-ft. intervals at the outside edges of the form boards, positioned to support any joints in the form boards.
4. Drive 3″ Deck Screws through the stakes and into the form board on one side. Set a level so it spans the staked side of the form and the opposite form board, and use the level as a guide as you stake the second form board so it is level with the first. For large projects, use the masonâs strings as the primary guide for setting the height of all form boards.
5. Once the forms are staked and leveled, drive 3â deck screws at the corners. Coat the insides of the forms with vegetable oil or a commercial release agent so concrete wonât bond to them.
Build A Structure Over It
There are two ideas you can try out to get mind-boggling results. One idea is to build a gazebo, while the other is to add a pergola. The gazebo is great for outdoor relaxation and comfort.
With each of these two designs, you need to add furniture because this awesomeness needs it. If you add a pergola, the sunlight hits different on the surface. You get to enjoy the coziness they offer.
Moreso, the pergola or any overhead structure helps to enclose the space. Gazebos and pergolas make the outdoor feel more private, thus comforting. All you have to do is check your patio and see which overhead structure is best suited.
An overhead trellis will play around with natural sunlight creating beautiful patterns, and you can add just about anything such as speakers, vines, or even ceiling fans.
A wooden gazebo will work wonders! Just like a pergola, a wooden gazebo doesnt come cheap. They help concentrate the appeal on a single point over your concrete patio. You can place matching furniture in the middle and trellis frames on the sides to add to the highlights.
There are a dozen ideas on the gazebo painting you can try out as well. Similarly, you can select different gazebo designs.
Read Also: Cement Mold Patio
Stain The Concrete To Look Like Tile
If you love the look of tiles but not the hard work or the expense, you could stain the concrete to look like tile! Use 1/2 inch tape to create grout lines on the floor and then stain over it. Peel off the tape and ta-da, instant tile! Just make sure to clean it beforehand and seal it afterwards and youll have a concrete patio that looks nothing like concrete.
Diy Paver Patio Flooring Ideas
Young House Love has;a full tutorial on how to build a paver patio for you! Lots of pics, and good instruction that can be adapted for several different looks, including the more modern outdoor patio flooring idea above.
Same technique, different material! This side yard patio features circular pavers of different sizes set in a random pattern. From Mod Frugal. These are pavers set into crushed granite, but you can install a paver patio into builders sand as well.
Coates Design in Seattle has this DIY paver patio flooring idea for us. These are simply oversized pavers laid in a bed of sand, then filled with decorative gravel.
Dont want to pay for all those patio pavers? Not a problem. We found this reusable plastic mold from Quikrete that allows you to create pavers with concrete mix and these molds. Instant patio flooring!
Want a more traditional feels like its been here forever patio flooring idea? Then learn how to build a brick patio from HGTV.
Can you tell this technique weve been featuring so far is pretty much the thing in DIY patio ideas? Here is another option for a Modern Mid-century patio flooring idea using these decorative concrete blocks laid on their sides. From Fresh Digs.
Don’t Miss: How To Clean Mildew Off Outdoor Cushions
Build A Concrete Patio
How to build a concrete patio step by step? Get here the step-by-step guides and visual diagrams about how to pour a concrete patio by making the concrete slabs. Use the wood slats to add the bordering and then fill the concrete that you can smooth down a towel, and float using the respective tools. It will be solid and durable and will be super affordable too. twinfallsconcr
How To Make A Concrete Patio More Attractive
Honestly, concrete is bland and unattractive in its raw form. Even so, one of the reasons people use it is because its durable. Over time as your patio ages, you may feel the need to remove it and get it hauled away. The removal process will also cost you money.
So instead of removing the concrete patio, you can try out the following to make your patio more attractive:
Recommended Reading: How To Get Dog Hair Off Patio Cushions
How Thick Should Concrete Patio Slab Be
So, youre planning to pour a new concrete patio to expand your backyard landscape and get a little more room to grill. Before you start, you need to know the right thickness for the patio. If you get it wrong, youll either spend far too much time and money on a thick patio or waste your money on a crumbling patio that doesnt meet code! So, how thick should a concrete patio be?
Most concrete patios, and other concrete slabs, are 4 inches thick. Building codes across the country usually require a thickness of 3.5 inches and compressive strength of 3,000 PSI. However, many things determine whether a concrete patio should be thicker, or incorporate rebar/reinforcement mesh.
In this article, youll learn how thick a concrete patio should be, the factors and building codes that determine the right slab thickness, and the basic steps of pouring your own concrete patio.
Also Check: How To Get Wood Stain Off Concrete
What About Cleaning A Concrete Driveway
This cleaner can also be used for driveways! The dish soap addition can help clean grease or oil. If you have heavy grease or oil stains on your driveway, increase the amount of dish soap in this solution to about 1/4 or 1/2 cup.
Another thing I love using to clean driveway areas is Spic and Span. This was a product we talked about earlier in the year in our Old-Fashioned Cleaning Products post. This powdered formula is very effective at cleaning porous concrete with oil or grease stains. So, if you have some on hand or come across it, you can try it on concrete.
Recommended Reading: How To Keep Chipmunks Off Patio Furniture
Dress Up The Concrete Patio
There is no shortage of dressing ideas! One key factor in dressing up your concrete patio is the ambiance. With numerous ideas on how to dress up, you can add the missing spark to your concrete patio.
Play around with the following elements to dress up your concrete patio:
- Play around with lighting to add romance and comfort
- Fire to add mood and the right atmosphere
- Screens to add privacy in the outdoors
- Flora and fauna for the pleasant aromas and feeling
Get more inspirational ideas on how to dress up your patio from the internet. For instance, youll see some of the best ways to play around with various lighting, including candles, chandeliers, etc.
When To Build A Concrete Patio
You can pour concrete within a fairly wide temperature range, but for beginners it’s best to wait for dry, warm weather. Rain can ruin a concrete finish, and freezing temperatures can ruin an entire concrete slab. To slow the curing process in very hot, dry weather, use a shade to keep the concrete out of direct sunlight, and mist the concrete with water as needed to prevent premature curing, which weakens the finished product.
You May Like: How To Install Ceiling Fan On Insulated Aluminum Patio
Secure The Concrete Pavers In Place And Fill The Gaps
Once you have finished each section and the pavers have all been laid, make sure none of the paver stones wobble. Youll want to check this before filling the joints.
I had about five that had some wobble and just about every time, the culprit was a raised bit of larger gravel that had been pulled near the surface. The concrete paver stone was resting awkwardly on the raised gravel.
The way to fix this is to gently remove the paver and check for the larger gravel that is raised. Remove it and fill in the hole with sand. Carefully place the paver back down into position.;
If you dont see any gravel, then something in that spot isnt level. It could be that theres a bit of a bump, or just one edge needs a little more sand. Use the float to level it and place the paver back into place.
With all the pavers set as you need them, you can start filling in the gaps. Use the square nosed shovel to scoop the sand or paver dust and place it into the joints, but only add about ½- ¾ of the paver dust/sand.;
Try to distribute it evenly between them. You can use a hand spade and/or a broom to help with this.
Now finish filling in the gaps with your decorative top layer. I used marble chips.
Spread these evenly throughout, but be sure to leave them recessed about ¼ from the top so you dont end up with a big mess of overflowing joint filler.
Those are all the steps! Now youll be ready to entertain on your new concrete paver patio!
Beautiful Concrete Patio Ideas And Designs
The Spruce / Almar Creative
Of all the materials available to build patios, concrete is the most traditional yet versatile choice. It’s smooth, clean, can be cast and formed into curvilinear or geometric shapes, and, with the addition of tints, can become anything other than the classic light gray.
Other benefits: it offers permanence, durability, and is fairly inexpensiveeven more so if you do it yourselfprovided you know what you’re doing and are more than capable of accomplishing;the task. For beginning do-it-yourselfers, it’s not easy work, nor is it a one-person job. If you aren’t sure you can tackle a concrete patio project on your own, hire a contractor.
You can’t go wrong with pouring a simple concrete slab, but if you want to add textures or a pattern, certain techniques can be applied during the curing process. One of the easiest ways to add texture is to apply a stiff broom over the drying concrete, once in each direction, which will give the surface some “tooth” and keep it from becoming slippery when wet.
Colors and materials used inside are continued outside to connect the spaces of this Arizona home. Designed by;Coffman Studio, the yard features acid-finish concrete patios and pavers, a rusted metal fire pit, bold yellow and aqua walls, rusticated steel planters, ornamental grasses, succulents, and a cover for filtered shade.
That’s Simon relaxing on the synthetic lawn.
Continue to 4 of 16 below.
Is It Cheaper To Build A Deck
Concrete is not the only option for your patio, but it may be the most cost-efficient. Decorative concrete on your patio can mimic the look and feel of many other surfaces such as pavers and wood decking.
A wood deck can cost $15 to $35 per square foot. This cost is related to labor, the materials chosen , and the amount of detail involved in the design. Although a wood deck can give you an attractive finished product, it can be an expensive option when compared to the features offered with a concrete patio.
Nail The First Form In Place
Align a 2×4 with the marks on the stakes and nail it in place with two duplex nails. Brace the form board with a 3-pound sledgehammer while you pound in the nails.
Nail the rest of the stakes to the form board the same way. Cut the stakes flush with or slightly below the tops of the forms. You will use the tops as guide to level the surface of the concrete, and any stake sticking above the surface will keep you from keeping a smooth surface.
Cut a 2×4 long enough to span each of the remaining sides. Put each board in place so the top is level with the marks you made earlier on the stakes. Attach stakes to forms with duplex nails. Nail in the remaining forms.
Concrete Patio Vs Brick
The materials for a brick patio will typically cost around $7 per square foot and another $10 to $12 per square foot for installation since they need to be laid by hand. However, a well-made paving brick can last for one hundred years or more.
- Bricks are a possible alternative for a patiothey come in a variety of colors, and you can get creative in your designs with them.
- They are more likely to crack, break, and shift.
- You have to power wash and reseal the surface every year.
Colored Concrete Patio Cost
If you want to change the actual color of the concrete, colored concrete costs about $3053/cu. yd., and more if a separate mixer needs to be delivered and cleaned after for each color.
- Appearance: A surface that yields a range of rich, rusty, or patina tones. Has a naturally earthy, variegated shade.
- Pros: When treated with acid stain, the concrete will not fade, flake, or peel because of the chemical bonding process to adhere it permanently to the concrete surface.
- Upkeep: Because sealing is not necessary, it wont need to be resealed every few years, but do a gentle power wash if needed.
- Summary: Allows for the creation of a unique, random finish with natural colors without needing any sealant.
Also Check: How To Stop A Patio Umbrella From Spinning
Measure Slope To Allow For Patio Drainage
So that your concrete paver patio drains away from your house, youll need to account for the slope of the space.
If your patio is on a hill or against a retaining wall, for instance, you will slope in two directions: away from the house and also away from the wall or the hill.
The angle of slope that allows for proper drainage for your patio is 1 per every 4 feet. For instance, my patio was 9 deep, so I created a slope of 2¼.
The way to mark the slope is to start at stakes that will be your low end. Take the strings youve tied onto those stakes and lower them by the number of inches required to meet the correct slope for your patio base on its depth.;
Next, use a marker to mark a line where you pulled the strings to .;
The new string locations now mark the height of the 4 base layer with the slope included.
I also found it helpful to mark the top of where the paver will be. Its important to note that depending on what your top base layer is made of, it may not actually add any height to your total.;
The paver dust I had compacted down to maybe about ¼. You may want to test yours to see because if yours doesnt compact like that, you may want to add it into your calculations.
If you are using the same pavers I used, these are just over 1½ thick. If your paver dust/sand compacts to almost nothing, you will want to make your last mark 1½ above the base layer mark just made.;
Before You Hire Your Contractor
Narrow your choices down to three who have extensive experience pouring concrete patios and adding the decorative effects youve chosen.
Pick from contractors who check off some or all of the following.
- See their portfolios of previous work.
- Make sure they are bonded and insured.
- Make sure cleanup is included in their quotes.
- Have an exact starting date and finishing date.
- Ask about warranties on the concrete and labor.
- Check their Better Business Bureau rating.
- Check their HomeGuide and Google rating
Get free estimates on HomeGuide from trusted pros:
Don’t Miss: How To Install A Pergola On A Paver Patio