Previously painted or stained concrete

1. Sand surface using large pad sander available at most rental outlets or building supply stores (coarse grit).

2. Wash with T.S.P General Household Cleaner and rinse well.

3. Follow steps 2 thru 6 as above.

4. Apply concrete stain or epoxy concrete paint.

5. Where car tires are resting, place rubber matting.

Preparing concrete for painting or staining

1. Wash with Muriatic Acid 2/3 water, 1/3 acid.

2. Puddle out on surface and spread with broom. Allow to sit for 5 to 15 minutes. A foaming action will occur.

3. Scrub with stiff bristle brush.

4. Rinse well with hose.

5. Note: do not do this project in bright hot sunshine.

6. Apply concrete stain or clear solvent based concrete sealer (penetrating type).


1: Wash with Bio-Wash Simple Wash available at most building supply stores.

2. Follow steps 2 thru 6 as above.

Oil & grease removal from concrete

To remove grease and oil stains from new or old concrete.

Use T.S.P General Household Cleaner

Directions: (Do not apply in direct sun) Wet surface with hot water. Straight from the bottle sprinkle cleaning formula over stained area and scrub in. Lay a damp terry towel over the entire stained area. Lay a plastic sheet over the towel to ensure the mixture doesn’t evaporate. Tape into place with duct tape. (Leave for at least 5 hours) Remove plastic & towel; scrub and hose down the area. Repeat if necessary.

Caution: Wear rubber gloves and eye protection when doing this job.

Oil spots on asphalt

New Oil Spots

Remove using “T.S.P General Household Cleaner”. Spray on surface and scrub with scrub brush, allow setting for 2 to 3 minutes and flushing with garden hose.

Old Spots (Asphalt shows signs of softness) Wash area using “T.S.P”, heavy-duty mix, and scrub with patio broom, then rinse with garden hose. Allow to dry.

Apply two coats white shellac 1 hour apart and allow overnight curing. Apply asphalt-based sealer to damaged areas and allow drying for 3 hours

Coating the entire driveway area will last for 2-3 years.

Future coatings can be acrylic latex driveway sealer.

Handy Person Tips

• Use your fertilizer spreader to scatter sand on icy walkways.
• To remove dangerous ice off your steps, sprinkle with salt.
• Kitty litter can be used to de-ice your sidewalks and steps.
• Fireplace Starters or Lighters: Save the lint from your dryer and paper egg cartons (not Styrofoam). Cut egg cartons into individual cups and fill cups with lint. Melt wax (from old candle stubs) and pour some over the lint. When lighting the fireplace use these, place them under the kindling in the fireplace. They are slow burning and do a great job in lighting the lire.
• Dried orange and grapefruit peels and rind make good fuel in a fireplace and give off a lovely aroma as they burn.
• Throw salt on fireplace logs once a month to prevent soot in the fireplace.
86. To prevent your fireplace from smoking, raise the fire grate by placing bricks under the legs.
• Save your Nabob coffee bags to burn in the fireplace. Roll up tightly and then watch the varicolored flames when the bags are burned.
• To add a little color to your campfire, soak pinecones in a solution of 1/2 gallon water and ½ pound Borax. When dry, they burn a vivid green.
• To make your Christmas tree last longer, add sugar to the water.
• To preserve your Christmas tree longer, add Pine sol to the water.
• To fireproof the Christmas tree, mix eight oz. boracic acid in one gallon of water. Spray mixture over tree and let dry.
• To clean automobile chrome, rub with dampened aluminum toil.
• Add one cup of kerosene to the wash water when washing the car. Wipe well with a soft cloth — no rinsing is necessary. This will prevent rust and water will actually bead on the car during a rainfall.
• Wash your car with liquid dishwashing detergent. It won’t scratch the surface.
• Use dry baking soda on a damp cloth to clean the bugs off the car windshield.
• Windshield wipers smearing? Clean the windshield and wiper blade with rubbing alcohol.
• Make your own windshield washer fluid by combining one quart rubbing alcohol, one cup water and two Tblsp. liquid detergents.
• Use steel wool pads on your tire white side walls to keep them new looking.
• Keep open cans of motor oil clean by sealing them with the plastic lids from one-pound tins of coffee.
• A sheet of fabric softener under your car seat will keep the car smelling fresh.

How to repair a minor crack in concrete – How to fill a gap in concrete – How to repair a small hole in concrete

How to repair a minor crack in concrete:

1. Clean the area so that it is free of debris. You can sweep it out, or use a wire brush or vacuum it out with a shop vac. It must be dry before you move to step 2.

2. Apply caulk into crack. Use an ample amount of caulk to fill the crack to just above the surrounding surface.

3. Take a trowel and smooth out the caulk so that it is level with the surrounding area. If the crack is small enough, you can use your finger to smooth out the caulk (make sure to wear a rubber glove).

4. Let dry for at least two hours.

How to fill a gap in concrete:

1. Make sure the area is dry and clear of debris.

2. Take caulking and apply it to the entire length of the gap. Use generously

3. You can even out the caulking with a glove-covered finger, a trowel, or the back of a spoon rubbed with oil you can use any oil—baby vegetable, olive, even suntan oil.

4. let dry for at least 4 hours.

How to repair a small hole in concrete:

1. Break away any loose or unstable material. The easiest way to do this is with a small chisel and hammer.

2. Clean up any excess debris. If you can use a shop vac, it’s best. Make sure area is dry

3. Use a paintbrush to apply the bonding adhesive to the entire area that needs to be patched.

4. Fill the area with the reinforced patching compound, only adding about ‘4 inch at a time.

5. Wait about 30 minutes for the layer to dry.

6. Apply additional layers until you have filled the hole to just above the surrounding surface area.

7. Use a trowel to smooth out the area being repaired, until it is level with the surrounding area, its okay to let the mixture feather over the surrounding area to get a good, level base.

8. Allow the mixture to cure (or dry). Although it will take months to completely cure, you will begin to see hardening within the first few minutes, and it will be hard enough to walk on within 2 hours.

How to Paint a Concrete Floor

If you expect to use more than one container of paint, open them all and mix them together for a uniform color. You do not need to thin a paint for use on a floor One exception is if you use a sprayer that requires thinned paint.

Using a nylon brush, such as a 2½ sash brush, cut in the sides and corners with primer This creates a sharp, clean edge. Start this way for the top coat as well.

Using a roller pad with the nap length recommended by the manufacturer, apply a primer coat to the surface. Start at the corner farthest away from the door, and back up as you work. Allow the primer to dry for at least 8 hours.

With a clean roller pad, apply the first top coat. Make the top coat even but not too thick, then let it dry for 24 hours. if you choose to add another top coat, work the roller in another direction to cover any thin spots. Let the final coat dry another day before you walk on it.

How to Paint Concrete

A couple coats of paint can work wonders to spruce up concrete. Unpainted, concrete can be dull and grey looking. It adds nothing to interior or exterior design. Nevertheless, with a little hard work, you can completely transform that ugly concrete so that it becomes an integral part of any decor. Painting concrete is an affordable way to upgrade your floors, walls or ceilings.

It’s not hard to learn how to paint concrete, but it does require a significant time investment. Concrete is harder to paint than drywall, and it requires several more steps. If you’re planning on painting a concrete floor or indoor wall, you’ll need a brush, brush cleaner, a roller, primer/sealer, paint, trisodium phosphate (TSP), a bucket, scrub brush and a mop. If you are painting an exterior wall, a power washer will cut down on a lot of cleaning time. If you painting over a surface that has already been painted, you’ll need a scraper and a wire brush to scrape of old, flaking paint. Vacuum up all of the paint you scrape off.

A thorough cleaning of the surface to be painted is very important. It is crucial to remove any oil or grease from the surface. Large grease stains can be absorbed in part by kitty litter and then scrubbed out with the TSP solution using either a mop, a scrub brush or both. Be sure to rinse the floor thoroughly and let it dry for several days.

If you have any cracks or holes in your concrete, fix them before you paint. You can use a concrete patch, or hydraulic cement, to smooth over any rough surfaces or holes. Consult the manufacturers recommendations for how to apply the concrete patch and how long it should dry before being painted.

Before you begin painting a concrete floor, make sure the concrete is completely dry and free of leaks. You can test this by taping down pieces of plastic to the concrete so that they are air tight around the room. Leave them overnight and check to see if any condensation formed. If so, your concrete has not been properly sealed and needs to be before you can continue. You can apply a sealer yourself, or have a professional do it for best results. Sealers can be found at local hardware stores. Once your concrete is in good condition for painting, you need to apply a primer. If you are unsure as to which primer to choose, ask a professional. It’s a good idea to get a primer that is compatible with your sealer.

After your concrete has been sealed, primed and allowed to dry thoroughly, you can begin painting it the color of your choice. Be sure to buy a quality paint that is concrete compatible. If you’re painting a floor, you can choose to add floor additives to the paint that will make the surface less slippery or buy special floor paint. Don’t be alarmed if the paint looks lighter than you would want at first, it will dry darker. The best way to apply the paint is in thin layers; two to four should be enough. You can either use a roller or a paint compressor. Use the brush to get into delicate areas like the part near a baseboard or window. Let it dry between coats. If you’re painting a floor, remember to paint your way out the door, otherwise you will literally paint yourself into a corner.

You can achieve different patterns in your concrete floor if you use a little creativity. Faux stone floors can be achieved if you paint on the grout lines. Different colors can be used to create vein lines common to natural stone. If you have a large room like those in a loft, you can paint different colors in different areas to create separate spaces. First, you paint an all-over color and let it dry. Then just measure and tape off each section and choose complimentary colors to fill them in.

The last step in how to paint concrete is applying a sealer if you’re painting a floor. Sealers are often noxious, so be sure to keep the area well ventilated and wear a mask. A coat or two of a quality sealer will protect your now beautifully painted floors for many years to come.

Painting Concrete Floors

Preparation is especially important when the surface to be painted is a concrete floor, such as in a laundry room or workshop. First you will want to repair any cracks or holes. You will next need to prepare the concrete with a muriatic acid solution. This process is called “etching.” It’s similar to etching glass— scraping off a bit of the top so that the paint has something to adhere to. Caution: muriatic acid is strong enough to burn skin and eyes. Before you begin the etching process, put on the proper safety gear. If you can’t ventilate the work area, wear a dual-cartridge respirator.

How to prepare and paint a concrete floor:

1. First, sweep and scrape off the dirt from the floor. Clean off any grease, oil, and other contaminants using a cleaning solution.

2. Rinse the floor well to remove all traces of the cleaning solution.

3. Mix the solution to etch the floor by adding 1 part muriatic acid to 3 parts water. Do it in this order—do NOT add the water to the acid.

4. Apply the solution, using 1 gallon per 100 square feet, and scrub the floor with a stiff-bristled brush. Leave the solution on the floor until it stops bubbling.

5. Rinse the floor thoroughly with clean water. Wipe it down with a damp sponge mop to eliminate puddles.

6. If the floor isn’t dry in four hours, repeat the rinsing procedure.

7. After the floor is completely dry vacuum it to remove any powder residue left by the muriatic acid solution.

8. You can now paint the floor with an alkyd or urethane latex floor and deck enamel. It is best to paint with a roller and long pole. First paint the edges then work from the wall farthest from the door back toward the door.

Cracked concrete walls

For basement walls with cracks large enough to have water running through during spring thaw or after extended rainy periods, I recommend a professional basement home repair service. This repair may require injections of epoxy or polyurethane.

Note: Most concrete wall cracks are caused by pressure behind the wall, from ground pressure, hydraulic water pressure and/or frost behind the wall.

If you have any of the above, it would be best to excavate the entire area around the cracked wall.

Caution: Always protect excavated areas using poly sheets or proper sloping to eliminate any concern of caving in.

Perimeter drainage should be flushed and cleaned every 3 to 5 years. This is a very inexpensive process if a catchment sump is already in place. If there is no catchment sump in place, it is best to have one installed.

After excavation and repair of any perimeter drainage tile or pipe, power wash the concrete wall removing any residual on the surface. Allow to dry.

Spray asphalt primer sealer 12” either side of the crack.

Apply peel and stick membrane over crack, bridging crack by 6-8 inches on either side. Apply dimpled PVC membrane over repaired area.

Back fill area with Sandy Pit Run Gravel to ensure proper water drainage to perimeter tile or pipe.

Concrete crack repair

Painting tips & tricks

Concrete crack repair

First determine if the crack is severe enough to repair.

If only a hairline crack, my recommendation is to leave it as is, since patching will only make it look worse.

If the crack is 1/8” or greater, the following would be the best remedy.

Note: If the crack has been caused by unstable substrate under the slab from poor compaction, my recommendation would be to have a slab jacking service (if available) come to your rescue and stabilize the slab before repair-

Clean entire surface using T.S.P General Household Cleaner, or a suitable exterior cleaning solution.

Tuck into crevice a foam backing rod (available in 1/8, 1/4” – 3” diameters) setting it down into the crack ½” from the surface.

Apply Weldbond or concrete adhesive over foam backing rod. Allow to cure for 1-2 hours.

Apply polyurethane caulking (gray or concrete colour) into crack crevice.

Sprinkle dry sand over caulking and brush excess off using a paintbrush.

Allow to cure for 12 hours before using area.

Choices for Wood Siding

Exterior wood siding can be painted or stained. There is a wide array of products available in both mediums. I prefer an alkyd (oil base) primer for bare wood, the top coat would vary depending on the look desired.

Primer is not required under stain except solid color stain that is white or another light color.

For repainting, primer is only required for areas where the preparation steps brought you down to bare wood, or where stain killer is needed due to mildew or water damage.

Stains for wood come in several degrees of transparency. Semi-transparent stains are useful for letting the wood grain show through, that can be a very nice look over cedar shingles.

Painting Tips – Cleaning Up

If you are planning to continue the work the next day, just keep the paint and roller in the paint tray and cover with a tray lid or cellophane. The next morning run the brush or roller over a newspaper a few times and it will be ready to use.
After the job is completed wash the rollers and brushes and paint tray with water. Do not use a spinning tool to clean brushes as this will make your brush flare. Wrap the clean brushes and rollers with newspaper and secure with a rubber band. Store the brushes flat or hang them on hooks.
Excess paint can be stored in the can. If you have no further use for the paint donate it to a charitable institute or in the case of water based paint pour over shredded newspaper or cat litter and throw the paper or cat litter in the trash. If it is oil based paint it cannot be thrown as it is considered a hazardous substance. Make enquiries with you local council as to the best way to dispose of it.

Cleaning Wood Window Frames

If painted, use a solution of mild detergent and water, or a mild commercial cleaner whose label says it is safe for painted surfaces. Always rinse off solution.
Wipe off excess water with a dry cloth. Do not use strong cleaners or scouring powder as these will damage the paint. If you plan to clean window frames, do it before cleaning window glass so solution does not spot glass panes. If natural-finished, vacuum or dust regularly. Clean infrequently, only when really needed. Use a commercial wood cleaning product or cleaning wax whose label recommends use on natural wood finishes.

Color choices for faux finishes

Color tips for techniques:

When using colorwashing, sponging or dragging techniques

A pastel cover of an off-white background will produce a fresh, cheery effect.

A dark color over a light background will give a bold, dramatic look.

Slight variations of the same color will give the surface a feeling of depth.

Common Exterior Uses of Caulk

Filling in the gap between a window and the molding (brick mold) around it.

Filling in gaps where different surfaces meet (such as a foundation and siding).

Filling in holes in the concrete block of a foundation (use masonry caulk).

Use a putty knife to make sure the caulk bonds to the surfaces around it.

Filling in the gap between a sidewalk and foundation.

Common Interior Uses for caulk

Some Common Interior Uses of Caulk

Prevent moisture from getting into gaps between walls, bathtubs, countertops and sinks.

Filling in gaps where different surfaces meet, such as ceramic tile and baseboard.

Building Up Damaged Concrete Surfaces

Building Up Damaged Concrete Surfaces

Painting tips & tricks

Clean the area with T.S.P General Household Cleaner and rinse well. While still damp from washing apply a concrete adhesive (Weldbond) to the entire area. Mix the Bonded Topping mix to a thicker consistency (like muffin mix) and trowel over the prepared area. Texture the surface with a broom if that look is desired. Allow to cure for 24 hours, and then follow with the brightening concrete procedure. Leave for one week and seal with a solvent- based concrete sealer.

For severely damaged surfaces I would suggest hiring a Concrete Restoration service to place a new layer of concrete minimum of 1 ½” over the existing surface. If concrete is sinking in some areas I recommend using a Slab Jacking service to lift and stabilize the slab.

Benefits Of Latex Paints

The benefits of latex paints are:

• No or low odor.
• Quick drying.
• Easy application.
• Easy clean up.

Some interior latex paints also are splatter resistant.

Other pluses: Latex paints are more durable and have increased resistance to blistering and bubbling.


This technique creates a strong, textured look, Prepare the surface with a coat of matte oil- based paint, and working in sections of approximately 2 sq yds (2 sq m), paint on the tinted oil glaze. Place a rolled-up cloth in a plastic bag and run the bag over the surface in a pattern, such as overlapping circles. Wipe off any excess glaze from the bag. When the glaze is dry, protect it with a layer of matte varnish.

Avoid Painting In direct Sunlight

When painting outdoors it is important to follow a few easy steps in order to avoid, “Lap” marks which will show after the paint is dry. Latex paint has a molecular structure which allows vapors to pass through it, which prevent blistering. However, these same properties cause the paint to dry very quickly, especially on hot days, or in direct sunlight. It is best to paint your siding, or foundation in long runs across the house, a few layers at a time, rather than to paint section by section. You won’t see the lap marks until the paint is completely dry, but they will be there.

Asphalt Sealer Coating

Do not work in the sunshine, the best time would be evening or early morning shade.

Do not power wash.

1. Clean with T.S.P General Household Cleaner, heavy-duty mix. For any cracks or puddle areas, fill with premixed asphalt patch. Tamp in place with metal tamper.

2. For small cracks, use premixed asphalt crack repair.

3. Then apply asphalt sealer (not acrylic sealer) with a driveway brush, squeegee or 50 mm roller.

4. In the following years, clean with T.S.P General Household Cleaner and then seal with an acrylic sealer as needed.

Note: Never seal asphalt the first year, let the product cure and Harden.

Cheque Before Painting A Metal Roof

Most people know about galvanic action, the corrosive effect that occurs when incompatible metals come into contact. But few people are aware of the damage to galvanised iron gutters and downpipes that can occur when an old roof is replaced with Zincalume, glazed tiles or painted metal sheeting. These materials, unlike roofing of galvanised steel, unglazed tiles or fibro, do not deposit metal salts and minerals as a protective coating on the inside of the gutter. Pure rainwater flowing from a chemically-inert roof may wash away the protective film on the inside of the galvanised guttering, causing rapid early gutter failure.