How to stain a concrete patio

Concrete can be so blah. Let’s spruce it up with a cool stain!

concrete stain patio diy project

Step One:

Determine if your concrete is porous enough to absorb the stain. The best way to do this is to drip a few drops of water on it. If it absorbs after a few minutes, it good to stain. If the water beads up and won’t absorb, then you need to strip and etch it. Probably don’t need to do that unless your concrete has been sealed in the past. Behr makes a concrete stripped for this purpose, I’m sure there are other products as well. Follow the instructions on the can.

If stripping is not needed, simply clean the concrete really well with water and a little vinegar or mild soap. The advantage to the vinegar is that it wont need rinsing. The soap will. Allow to dry thoroughly.

Step Two:

We used a roller and tray to apply the stain to the floor, then used a round household sponge to dab a texture into the stain before it dries. You will need to have two people, one to roll and one to dab and work in small sections. Try to keep the edge wet as you work to prevent a hard line, but with the texture, its pretty forgiving. Allow to dry. Don’t panic if it looks like a total failure at this point…it WILL need a second coat! In fact, you could add a third coat for a really rich texture, we stopped at two. Note: If your sponge is not round, simply tear away chunks of the edges before using so you wont have any hard edge marks in your stain.


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