Posts Tagged With: concrete maintenance

Create Curb Appeal with Concrete Resurfacing

Repair Your Cracked and Eroded DrivewayToday’s the day for that do-it-yourself concrete repair project you’ve been meaning to accomplish for a while now: restoring your driveway, walkway and patio. The weather’s been cooperating all week long — there’s been no rain and temperatures are ranging between 70° and 75°F — which is not only great for your mood, but perfect for your concrete, which needs to maintain a surface temp of at least 50°F before you can repair those cracks or crumbles successfully.

No jackhammer needed. Unless your concrete has extremely wide cracking and an uneven surface, there’s no need to tear it out, repair the sub base and pour new concrete. The existing concrete can be restored to look like new with a little repair and resurfacing. Smaller cracks are relatively simple to fix, if you have these tools and products on hand:

*A quick note about power trowels: available for rent, this equipment comes with accessories for working out surface imperfections and creating a satin smooth concrete finish with ease. As always, let us know what questions you have, or if you need advice on which tools will help you effectively complete a project.

Small cracks up to a half-inch wide are the simplest to repair. Use a wire brush or chisel to scrape any debris from the crack, then spray or hose clean with water. A latex concrete patch can be injected with a caulking gun or troweled into the crack, leveled and smoothed out.

Tiny cracks up to a quarter of an inch wide should be worked with a chisel to widen slightly, enough to help hold the patch material in place. Spray the crack clean with water and let dry before applying a concrete adhesive, then a concrete patch compound. Level the patch with a trowel. Once any crack is filled, cover the repair with plastic and allow it to dry slowly before moving on to resurfacing.

If you plan to resurface your concrete, mask the expansion joints. These are the dividing areas of large slabs that help control cracking. Mask them with duct tape before applying a dressing. Mix the resurfacer with a portable mixer or electric drill fitted with a mixing paddle, pour it onto the clean slab and spread it out immediately with a trowel. Remember to texture the surface with a push broom, to create slip resistance.

Time is of the essence. Experts say is takes about one hour to resurface 60 square feet of concrete. If you use a polymer-based cement resurfacer, you’ve got less than 30 minutes to apply once water is mixed in, so prepare it in batches. The treated surface can be walked on after about two hours; wait six hours before driving a car onto a driveway. After 24 hours, protect the new surface with a clear, waterborne masonry sealer.

Learn more about restoring cracked and eroded surfaces from our blog post, The 7 Step Process to Restore Your Cracked and Eroded Driveways.

About the Author

Jack Runyon is the president of Runyon Equipment Rental. He has 21 years of rental experience, as the 3rd generation son to carry on the family tradition and his grandfather’s vision. He prides the company for its devotion to ethics, quality products and customer service. Jack is known for his passion and vast expertise.

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Categories: How-To's, Restore and Renovate | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

7 Steps to Cutting Concrete Like a Pro

Repairing and renovating homes very often involves cutting concrete with precision. Removing or resizing kitchen slabs, making holes in ceilings and reshaping driveways are a few instances when it becomes imperative to cut concrete.

Tools Required:

  • Concrete Saw: A good option is the Bosch 12″ Electric Concrete Saw that has AC/DC capacity and features a reversible handle for added convenience and versatility. It also has a large footplate that improves stability and cuts at a greater depth.
  • Electric cut off tool (optional)
  • Pneumatic Chisel (optional)
  • Jackhammer (optional)

Process:STIHL Concrete Saw

  1. Layout: Use chalk to mark the area to be cut. A concrete saw cuts in straight lines.
  2. Prepare the saw: Fit the concrete saw with a diamond or abrasive blade. Set the blade at the required depth, which may be 50.8 mm (2 inches) to 152.4 mm (6 inches). Most house slabs, driveways and retainer walls fall within this range.
  3. Cut: Start cutting from the edge of the concrete, slowly following the line drawn in chalk.
  4. Pour water: Keep the blade cool by pouring water over it as the cut progresses. This also helps to reduce dust.
  5. Progress slowly: Proceed slowly, with minimum RPM as this helps to keep the saw in line, prevents overheating and prevents the tossing up of shrapnel into the air when the cutting is in progress.
  6. Remove the concrete: If the concrete is thicker than what the saw would cut, a jackhammer may have to be deployed to pound the excess concrete away. An alternative is to use heavy-duty concrete saws that cut up to 18 inches deep.
  7. Chip off the edges: If clean corners are required, score off the corners using a 4-inch diameter electric cut off tool and chip away the rest of the concrete using a small pneumatic chisel.

Make sure to take appropriate safety precautions. The process generates high levels of noise and dust. Ear plugs and goggles are a must, as are other safety precautions when cutting large chunks of concrete. Keep in mind that the majority of concrete cutting problems (and injuries) can be solved by using the appropriate tools for the job. Still have questions? Talk to an expert to provide advice on your project.

About the Author

Jack Runyon is the president of Runyon Equipment Rental. He has 21 years of rental experience, as the 3rd generation son to carry on the family tradition and his grandfather’s vision. He prides the company for its devotion to ethics, quality products and customer service. Jack is known for his passion and vast expertise.

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Give Your Floors a Touch of Epoxy for Added Protection and Shine

Over time, the application of concrete epoxy coatings has become an essential part of maintenance and overhauling. Considering the nature of paint, epoxy is used to coat the floors in garages and other areas that need protection from heat and chemicals. By and large, this is a DIY project you can complete easily once you understand the process.

Concrete EpoxyWhy is Two-Component Epoxy Better?
There are two kinds of epoxies – single component and two-component. Both are easily available. The one you should essentially choose is the two-component version as it has many advantages. It comes in two separate forms and needs to be mixed in a predetermined ratio. It can be thinned down just a bit to add a colorant. Two-component epoxy benefits:

  • Anti-slip properties
  • Dry harder and are durable
  • Easy to maintain and protect your concrete well
  • Different colors epoxy floor colors are available in shades of grey or tan, and in most cases with added paint chips to help you up the color quotient of your flooring

Application of Epoxy:
1. Prep your Floor: the first step in prepping your floor is to do a moisture test on the concrete. Here is how:

  • Use plastic: take a piece of plastic, maybe a large Ziploc bag, and tape it to the floor. Make sure that you do not allow any air into it. Leave it in place for a day and then take it off the concrete.
  • Begin when dry: if the patch of concrete below is dark, or you find condensation on the Ziploc, then your floor is moist and will not hold on to the paint. You can only begin when it is dry.

2. Clean the Floor

  • Spray detergent and water: the floor also has to be super clean before you begin, so moisten your floor. Next mix together a laundry detergent proportionately with 5 gallons of water and spray it all over your floor.
  • Scrub the floor: spend a good amount of time scrubbing your floor with a bristled brush and then rinse off with a strong pressured water nozzle.

3. Get Rid of Stains

  • Use degreaser: you may have a few grease or oil stains that persist. You can get rid of them by pouring a bit of degreaser over the stain and scrubbing it away.
  • Use rough sand: put a bit of rough sand on it and press it down. Let it sit that way for a day. The next day you just have to sweep the sand away and your stain will be gone.

4. Etch the Concrete

  • So the paint sticks: this is an important part of the process because it opens up the concrete and allows the paint to stick to the floor in the right manner. Using a resurfacing grinder tool can help.
  • Follow product instructions: most epoxy kits will come with their etching product, so all you have to do is follow the instructions.
  • Or check with the store: if instructions are not provided you can always get it from an expert here at Runyon Equipment Rental.

5. Apply your Paint

  • In batches: work in batches of around 6 X 6 inches at a time. This is important if you plan to use paint chips.
  • Use aggregate: always throw them up into the air and have them land on the fresh paint, rather than flinging a handful directly onto the paint. The randomness you get is much better this way.

Finish by Sealing and Coating
You will have to use an epoxy joint filler to seal in the edges of the floor and can wrap up the process with a glossy coat of clear epoxy.

The most important thing to remember is that you need to prep your floor the right way before you apply the epoxy. Also, following the instructions on the package to the ‘T’ is essential.

About the Author

is the current Marketing Coordinator at Runyon Companies. She graduated from Butler University in the spring with a double major in International Business and Marketing, a minor in Spanish, departmental honors distinction and cum laude. She specializes in all things internet marketing, with an emphasis on content creation, website maintenance, blogging, social media, lead tracking and marketing strategy.

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The 7 Step Process to Restore Your Cracked and Eroded Driveways

Cracked DrivewayMany homeowners spend a lot of time, and money, on landscaping and home improvements to give their home that “curb appeal.” But often, the first thing people notice when they come to your home is the condition of the driveway.

How Do Driveways Wither Over Time?

  • Erosion – Wind and rain can cause cracks on the surface of driveways
  • Sun Rays – The harsh effect of the sun weakens the concrete and causes expansion joints on concrete driveways.
  • Water – Annual freezing and thawing cycles as water permeates through the cracks in the concrete to settle at the base, weakening the foundation.
  • Gas, Spills and Grass – Gas and oil spills, and the growth of grass through the cracks break down the driveway even more.

Repairing the Damage

One however need not spend a fortune relaying damaged driveways. It is possible to restore driveways using driveway sealants and driveway expansion joint fillers.

Restoring your Driveway

Tools needed to restore the driveway:

The Restoring Process

  1. Fill the cracks – If the cracks are small, which is less than half an inch deep, rubberized crack fillers available in small tubes may suffice. For medium sized cracks, joint fillers are required. Squeeze the patch filler into the cracks, until it reaches the level of the driveway. Use a trowel to spread the joint filler and ensure a level surface.
  2. Repair crevices – When large cracks, gaps between the concrete blocks that constitute the driveway or crevices in the driveway are present, it is better to use grout instead. Use cement-based grout, which is a mixture of cement, fine gravel and water. Use a grout hand pump to mix the grout and make the task easy.
  3. Wait for grout to dry – Allow the grout to dry for a day or so before you proceed.
  4. Clean the driveway – Next, use a push broom to remove any dirt or debris, and wet the driveway with a garden hose lightly.
  5. Water and solvent-based sealants – Water-based sealants are environment friendly, but solvent-based sealers are more durable and better suited for heavily used driveways.
  6. Apply the sealant – Mix the water based or solvent based grout sealer, as per the manufacturer’s instructions, and apply the sealant over the driveway in thin coats. This helps the driveway resist water, oil and other contaminants. Use the push broom to spread the sealant evenly.
  7. Wait for sealant to set – Do not use the driveway until the sealant has completely set in, which may take as much as 48 hours.

If you want your driveway to have the bright look all the time, you can seal it annually. Most good seals will last two or three years, depending on the type of winter you have and how much stress is put on the asphalt from plowing or snow blowing during the winter.

About the Author

 is the current Marketing Coordinator at Runyon Companies. She graduated from Butler University in the spring with a double major in International Business and Marketing, a minor in Spanish, departmental honors distinction and cum laude. She specializes in all things internet marketing, with an emphasis on content creation, website maintenance, blogging, social media, lead tracking and marketing strategy.

Categories: How-To's, Restore and Renovate | Tags: , , , , | 2 Comments

Does Your Garage have a Pressure Washer Surface Cleaner?

Pressure WasherMost homeowners see the pressure washer as industrial or painting equipment — ideal for servicing vehicles or for a thorough cleaning before a paint job. However, a pressure washer is a handy tool for the home as well, and you might need one in your garage.

Why would this be the case? Pressure washers perform a variety of tasks – cleaning driveways, walkways, garages, gutters, and dog kennels, to name a few. You can also use them to clean garden equipment, outdoor furniture, lawn movers – practically anything that is covered in heavy dirt and grime. Using an ordinary garden hose can be ineffective, and will certainly involve additional cleaning and scrubbing. Using a pressure cleaner not only saves you from back-breaking scrubbing and cleaning to remove the grime, but also gets the work done in half the time.

Working with a pressure washer surface cleaner is extremely easy. Start a good distance away from the spot you want cleaned and work your way closer. In addition, if you would like to increase your cleaning power, consider using a rotary nozzle. A rotary nozzle can assist in tougher jobs such as wrought iron furniture.

Whether you are using it for an everyday task like cleaning out the dog kennel, or for a bigger job, like prepping the surface of your home for new paint, a pressure washer can be an invaluable tool to have around your home. Pressure washers can help you save water, money and time by cutting jobs in half and making cleaning into a simple, quick task.

About the Author

Jack Runyon is the president of Runyon Equipment Rental. He has 21 years of rental experience, as the 3rd generation son to carry on the family tradition and his grandfather’s vision. He prides the company for its devotion to ethics, quality products and customer service. Jack is known for his passion and vast expertise.

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