Frequently Asked Questions

Answers To All Your Stamped Concrete Questions

Our specialty and passion is installing colored and stamped concrete flatwork. Stamped concrete when done properly is functional art, and every project is a one-of-a-kind.

Proper Sub-base: The key to good concrete is a good sub-base. We place 6″ of compacted crushed limestone gravel beneath all of our flatwork. The sub-base must mirror the surface of the concrete to achieve uniform concrete thickness.

Heavy Reinforcement: Unlike most of our competition, we use ½” steel reinforcing bars (rebar), and synthetic fiber mesh that is integrally mixed throughout the concrete. This is the ultimate combination of reinforcement.

Quality Concrete: We use a 6-bag, 4000 psi, air entrained concrete, with a low water to cement ratio. We only pour a quality concrete mix.

Properly Placed Control Joints: We install all control joints in a 10’x10′ pattern or smaller. This is the best method to control random cracking.

Quality Sealers / Cure and Seals: We use two different types of commercial grade sealers, depending on the project. With all of our stamped concrete projects we apply 2 coats of decorative concrete sealer. With all of our traditional concrete flatwork projects we apply a penetrating cure and seal sealer. Quality sealer will better protect your investment.

Yes, all concrete cracks. In the vast majority of projects, the cracks occur in the designed control joints. However, even properly poured and jointed concrete can crack in places other than the joints. It is important to understand that random cracks are not indications of poor craftsmanship. Most of these cracks are simply un-planned joints and are normal.

One of our top priorities is ensuring water flows away from your house and runs off your concrete. We put ¼” per foot of pitch on all projects (where possible).

It depends on the project. We pour the majority of our projects 4” thick. We pour all driveways 5” thick. Steps, walls, aprons, and other projects will call for different thicknesses.

Most traditional flatwork projects take 3 days or less depending on the size. Most colored and stamped projects take 4 days or less depending on the size.

In most cases the answer is no. Concrete flatwork is considered permanent landscaping, which does not require a building permit in most municipalities. Some areas do require permits for driveways, however. Any project requiring a foundation wall will typically require a building permit. It is the homeowner’s responsibility to ensure that their proposed project is within property lines and is approved by zoning. Any necessary permits must be pulled by the homeowner.

No, we contact Digger’s Hotline about a week prior to your projected start date.

If we have to get into your backyard, we will most likely damage your yard. The typical project requires excavation with a bobcat, which means multiple trips back and forth across the same path hauling heavy materials. If your project is a driveway, then more than likely we will cause very little damage to your yard. Rest assured, we offer yard restoration services to repair any damages to landscaping that may occur.

Yes, we take pride in treating your home with the respect it deserves. We do a thorough clean up of your property, and sweep the street at the end of each work day.

We have a motorized wheel barrel called a concrete buggy to get concrete into backyards and tough to reach spots, the concrete truck stays on the street.

We remove concrete, asphalt, pavers, brick, decks, retaining walls, stumps, trees, sod, dirt, and other miscellaneous debris.

We excavate a minimum of 10” below grade on most projects, and 11” below grade on driveways.

Many of the stamp patterns are smooth, so we add a traction additive called Shark Grip, to give your stamped concrete great traction.

Stamped concrete is easier to shovel than the materials it replicates. Overall stamped concrete is more uniform and flat than cut slate, tile, brick pavers, natural stone, wood decks, etc. It is not bulletproof though, so we recommend using a shovel with a plastic edge and / or snow blower with rubber paddles. We do not recommend plowing stamped concrete.

No. Never. Salt is the enemy of concrete. It will chemically corrode the surface and cause imperfections. Use sand anytime to add traction, but never use salt or deicers.

Our design team will work with you to create the patio or outdoor living space that will best fit your wish list and budget.  Please visit us at our showroom to start creating the patio of your dreams.

The pattern we install most frequently is Ashlar Slate. It is a very rich and clean look that goes well with most types of architecture and home exteriors.

Our stamped concrete is a two color system, an integral color and an antiquing color. We do a lot of light – medium earth tones for the integral color, and a darker brown or gray color for the antiquing. This gives you a nice natural contrast. Upon request we will help you pick out the colors that you feel will fit your project the best.

The cut lines are control joints, and are found in almost all stamped concrete. Their function is to coax the concrete to crack in nice straight lines. We strongly recommend them to avoid random cracking.

No, you will see the integral color.

For all stamped concrete projects we recommend you stay off of the concrete for a full day after we have finished sealing it. For traditional flatwork, we recommend you stay off for a full day after we pour.

We recommend you wait 7 days prior to vehicle traffic. During the early spring and late fall we recommend waiting 10-12 days prior to vehicle traffic.

Your concrete is curing. Concrete typically takes about 30 days to cure, during this time your concrete will transform from its initial darker color to its final lighter color. The spots and/or blotchiness will fade out during this time.

It is important to understand that every project is different and that we are working with literally tons of materials, not a gallon of paint. The final color will be close to color chart swatches, but we are not able to guarantee it will be exactly the same. Even traditional concrete can exhibit color variations, especially if the project requires more than one load of concrete or if the concrete is placed on different days. Most of these variations are minor and will fade over time.

Concrete will never be perfect. It is important to understand that we work with imperfect materials under imperfect environmental conditions. The factors that can affect the final looks of concrete are too many to mention. Every project is different and therefore every project will look different. The imperfections in concrete are what makes concrete so attractive and sought after.

Stamped concrete is a multiple step process that requires warmer temperatures than traditional concrete. The temps must be in the 40’s for a few days in a row to properly pour, finish, and seal your project.

As long as the ground is not frozen and the temps will be above freezing while we are pouring, we can pour traditional concrete flatwork. We cover the concrete with insulated curing blankets to protect from freezing in cold conditions.

No, we offer free consultations and estimates.

No, we use flexible material for our forms. We can literally make any shape you can imagine.

We recommend concrete be resealed every 2-3 years for maximum protection of your investment. The process is easy to do and we provide all of our customers with detailed instructions on exactly how to re-seal their concrete. We also offer resealing services.

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