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Spring Cleaning Concrete

With spring officially upon us, warmer temperatures are in sight. And with warmer temperatures comes the eagerness to entertain on your Racine stamped concrete patio.

Like so many areas of your home, your concrete needs a good spring cleaning before use. Cleaning concrete will not only make your concrete look beautiful, it will give you the satisfaction of a ready-to-use space.

Below are several dos and don’ts for cleaning concrete.

(For all of the suggestions below, be sure to test any cleaners on a small, inconspicuous section of concrete — especially colored concrete — to make sure it doesn’t ruin your concrete.)

Before any concrete cleaning, be sure to move all grills, tables, benches or anything else that could get in the way of cleaning. Also, be sure to thoroughly sweep the area to remove any debris, including leaves, branches, or dirt.

For concrete cleaning after a cold, long winter, use a 10-to-1 mix of warm water and an environmentally safe, biodegradable cleaner. You can leave the mixture on the concrete for as long as 15 minutes before scrubbing with a stiff broom and rinsing.

For stubborn stains on your concrete, simply add bleach to the mixture. One cup of bleach will clean approximately 100 feet.

While pressure washers are often considered safe for concrete cleaning, it’s best to avoid them. While the high pressure water dislodges dirt and debris, it can also chip concrete. It’s instead best to use gentle brushing, low pressure and biodegradable cleaners to keep your concrete clean, beautiful and performing as it should.

To learn more about the best way to clean your concrete, including your Racine stamped concrete, contact us today.

Cleaning concrete will help your patio look like new.
Spring cleaning concrete will help you enjoy your Racine stamped concrete patio and more this summer.

Schedule Concrete Needs Now

With the cold temperatures behind us and the summer sun approaching, now is the time to consider any concrete projects for the spring, summer and fall, whether it be for your Racine stamped concrete patio, or your Lake Geneva decorative concrete driveway.

By scheduling and completing your projects sooner than later, you’ll ensure maximum use of your concrete patio or driveway. Furthermore, the warm weather months are our busy season, so booking early ensures flexibility in our calendar to meet your scheduling needs.

Our long and cold winters can damage concrete, leaving patios and driveways unattractive. We can repair any damage due to the cold, and make your concrete beautiful again.

Additionally, we offer the latest in decorative concrete for both residential and commercial properties. From sealing you existing concrete driveways to constructing a new patio, we can complete your project to your satisfaction and ensure it lasts for years to come.

And we can help you determine the best designs based on the existing decor of your home. We can add any variety of colors to wet concrete before it’s poured, or acid stain existing concrete, which give your concrete an attractive, marbled effect.

With more than 22 years’ experience in concrete construction industry, Urban Concrete has the knowledge and ability to impress your friends and family with beautiful, Racine stamped concrete, all while providing you with the quality you deserve.

For more information about decorative concrete, or to schedule your spring or summer appointment now, contact us today.

Racine Stamped Concrete
Now is the time to schedule your Racine stamped concrete needs for the spring, summer and fall.

Erratic Weather Can Ruin Concrete

Late winter and early spring weather in Southeast Wisconsin is erratic at best. This year has been especially inconsistent, with temperatures reaching the mid-50s followed days later by winter storm warnings and inches of snow.

While these back-and-forth weather patterns leave us to wonder if temperatures will ever stabilize, the freeze-thaw cycles can wreak havoc on your concrete — whether it’s a Racine stamped concrete patio or a Milwaukee concrete driveway.

Freeze-thaw damage is caused when porous concrete absorbs water, which turns into ice in freezing temperatures. Because concrete isn’t flexible, it eventually chips and breaks as the water absorbed by concrete expands as it freezes. (It’s this expansion of freezing water that causes the potholes you are likely to experience on roadways in the late winter and spring.) Overtime, these chips and breaks can make your Racine stamped concrete unsightly.

While there isn’t much that can be done about the outside temperatures that affect the concrete, sealing your concrete can help protect it and slow the deterioration of your concrete from freeze-thaw cycles.

Another way to combat freeze-thaw cycles is to use deicing chemicals to reduce the freezing point of snow and rain in cold temperatures.

At Urban Concrete, we can seal your concrete and recommend the right de-icing product to reduce damage from free-thaw cycles. From Racine stamped concrete to Oak Creek stamped patio, we can helps reduce the wear and tear of winter and springtime weather on your concrete.

To learn more about the effects of freeze-thaw cycles on your concrete and how to protect it, contact us today.

Urban Concrete can help beautify your damaged Racine stamped concrete
Freeze-thaw cycles can damage your Racine stamped concrete.

Caring for Decorative Concrete

Decorative concrete is an investment in a durable, functional, and beautiful material that’s designed to last. But with the winters we experience in South East Wisconsin, caring for decorative concrete in Wisconsin is a necessity.

Between rain, snow, ice and more, concrete in our area takes a beating. In order to enjoy it as long as possible, be sure to do the following to care for the project this winter:

—    Make sure you shovel off fallen snow as soon as possible. Concrete is damaged from water continually freezing and thawing. By removing snow from your decorative concrete as soon as you can, you’re removing the threat of melting snow — or water — from the freezing and thawing cycle.

—    Avoid using de-icing agents on decorative concrete, especially in the first winter after the project is completed. While the sealer helps protect the concrete from the de-icer, the water caused from melting snow can seep through, and the freezing and thawing cycle can damage the concrete.

—     Speaking of sealing, make sure your decorative concrete is sealed in a regular basis. Sealants will help protect your concrete and it makes your decorative concrete shine.

—      If temperatures allow it, and there is no snow or ice on your decorative concrete, sweeping your concrete from debris will avoid excess dirt build-up and is beneficial over time.

Regardless of whether you’re caring for a Milwaukee decorative concrete driveway, or a Pleasant Prairie decorative concrete patio, these care tips will help your concrete remain beautiful and functional for years.

Contact us today to learn more about how to keep your decorative concrete beautiful for years to come.

Decorative concrete
Keep your decorative concrete clean this winter to keep it beautiful and long-lasting.

Safely Remove Ice from Concrete

With the winter season upon us, the weather is certain to be more frightful than delightful in the near future.

And this less-than-desirable-weather is sure to bring more ice and snow to the area, creating slippery situations on driveways and sidewalks. Good neighbors always take care of their concrete areas to reduce the threat of someone slipping and getting injured.

But when de-icing your concrete driveways and walkways, be sure to use calcium chloride or magnesium chloride, as opposed to sodium chloride, better known as rock salt. While rock salt itself won’t damage your concrete, the rapid warming then freezing can.

Sodium chloride is a better option as it causes no harm to your concrete and quickly melts the ice. Furthermore, it’s more environmentally friendly than traditional rock salt. Magnesium chloride also excels at melting ice, is safe to use near plants, and will help your concrete last longer. However, be advised that magnesium chloride typically costs more than the other options.

And after you finish de-icing your concrete walkways, steps and more, take the time to shovel the slush created from the rapidly melting ice. By removing this slush, you reduce the threat of refreezing and potential damage in the long-run to your concrete. By removing the slush, you can increase the life of your concrete.

So whether it’s a Racine concrete driveway, or a Lake Geneva stamped patio, be sure to pick the right de-icing agent to keep you slip free, and keep your concrete strong.

Contact us today to learn more about how to keep your driveway and more ice free.

Keeping concrete clear of ice.
Keeping your concrete clear of snow and ice is a necessity in Southeast Wisconsin.

Happy Holidays from Urban Concrete

With the hustle and bustle of the holidays in full swing, we want to take this opportunity to wish you the happiest and holidays and thank you for your past business.

The holidays are a special time of the year spent gathering with friends and family to reflect on the year past and look ahead to the future. We hope you had a joyful 2015 and look forward to 2016.

We hope we were part of your year, and hope to be part of your future. Whether it’s a Oak Creek concrete driveway, or a Milwaukee decorative concrete floor, we can help you complete your concrete project.

New concrete can beautify your home and add value. We have the knowledge and experience to complete decorative projects to your liking that will leave a lasting impression on guests. And we provide commercial services for the business-owner in your life.

And if we’ve done work for you in the past, and as you gather with neighbors this holiday season, please share with them your excitement about our work. Sharing your positive experiences with neighbors is the best gift we could ask for.

In the meantime, if you have any concrete-related issues or questions, please contact us, whether it’s about your Kenosha stamped concrete, Pleasant Prairie concrete driveway, Racine decorative concrete floors or anywhere between.

Until then, from all of us at Urban Creative Concrete, have a happy holiday season!

For all your concrete needs in 2016, call us today!
Happy holidays from all of us at Urban Creative Concrete.

The Beauty of Decorative Concrete

Concrete is often described as durable and strong, but few people would describe the often boring grey slab as beautiful. But concrete can be beautiful and more and more customers are requesting decorative concrete for their homes.

Whether it’s a Pleasant Prairie decorative concrete patio, or a Milwaukee decorative concrete floor, decorative concrete can add curb appeal and value to your home, leaving lasting impressions with neighbors, friends and family.

There are a few ways we can customize your concrete to match the exterior of your home and your unique style.

Concrete can be stamped to resemble wood or bricks, adding texture to your concrete. We also have the ability to stamp a custom design into the still-wet concrete.

Additionally, concrete can be chemically stained with acid. The acid reacts to the hydrated lime in the concrete and permanently stains the surface. Water-based stains also are available. Between these stains and the variety of colors they are offered, there are endless opportunities to get the look and feel you want.

At Urban Decorative Concrete, concrete decoration is in our name. We excel at decorative concrete and can work with you to get the look and feel you want. Whether you’re looking for a Lake Geneva decorative concrete driveway or a Oak Creek decorative concrete patio, we have the knowledge and experience to get the job done to your satisfaction.

For more information about Urban Decorative Concrete or our services, contact us today.

Decorative Concrete
Decorative concrete can add beauty to your home and can be made to look like bricks and more.

Sealing Your Stamped Concrete

Concrete, when maintained properly, is a durable material that can withstand even the harshest of South East Wisconsin winters.

But because concrete is porous, it absorbs harmful chemicals, stains, oils, and even water. And that de-icer you use to stay safe all winter? Concrete absorbs that, too. In fact, de-icer can wear down your concrete, making it important to protect and maintain your stamped concrete.

By sealing our stamped concrete, you’ll deny oils, chemicals, stains and more from penetrating into the concrete. This will keep your concrete sound and strong for years to come.

Sealing also helps protect your concrete from the day-to-day abrasions from your vehicles to the kids playing with their toys. Sealer also can help you keep your concrete clean, reducing your hard work in the future.

Lastly, concrete sealer can beautify your concrete and give it new life. With a wide range of sheens — from satin to high gloss — sealers can help enhance the color of your stamped concrete.

From Milwaukee stamped concrete to Kenosha stamped concrete, we’re the contractor to help maintain your concrete. We can seal your stamped concrete to ensure it lasts and minimizes the threat of higher concrete work down the road.

To learn more about how we can help you protect your concrete investment, or to learn more about sealers to make your concrete beautiful again, contact us today.

Sealing Stamped Concrete
Sealing your stamped concrete will help it last longer and look beautiful.

Concrete Driveway and Stamped Patio

Even though the temperatures outside are dropping, there is still time to complete your concrete projects, from a new Pleasant Prairie concrete driveway in to a beautiful Lake Geneva stamped patio.

But don’t wait too long. Winter in Southeast Wisconsin is coming quickly and cold temperatures can adversely affect the concrete mix. Cold temperatures slows the hardening of concrete — and in extreme cases, can freeze the mix — leaving the dried concrete weak and creating hassles in the future.

Stamped Concrete Patio
Stamped Patio

And concrete cannot be poured over frozen ground. Frozen ground eventually thaws, which will cause the concrete to shift and inevitably crack. If you can’t complete your concrete project this fall, it’s best to wait until spring when the ground thaws thoroughly.

If your concrete project is finished in the fall, it’s best not to use any de-icing agents on the concrete for the first winter.

Pleasant Prairie Concrete Driveway
Concrete Driveway Pleasant Prairie

While temperatures are falling, you can still add durable and long lasting concrete to your home or business to add curb appeal in time for the quick-approaching holiday season.

We offer a variety of concrete services, including decorative concrete, installing patios, walk-ways, concrete steps and more. We also offer concrete floors and countertops inside the home.

From Milwaukee decorative concrete patio, to Racine concrete driveway, we service all of Southeast Wisconsin. Contact us today to have your concrete project finished now before the winter freeze.

The Difference between Concrete and Cement

Cement and Concrete.

Two different words often treated as the same. But cement and concrete are two very different materials with two very different functions.

Cement is simply the agent that binds concrete together. It’s an ingredient of concrete and is made of different materials, including aluminum, iron, calcium, limestone and more. Cement is made when these materials are heated to approximately 2,700 degrees, and later ground with gypsum into a fine powder, creating the gray, flour-like cement.

Conversely, concrete is a fine powder that can’t be made without cement. Concrete is a masonry material of stone, sand, and rock. Concrete is mixed with cement, which starts the chemical reaction that hardens the cement. But before it completely hardens, the mix can be poured into a shape, like a slab, for example.

The mixture creates the very durable and long-lasting concrete.  That’s one reason concrete is sought after for a variety of projects like a Racine concrete driveway or a Lake Geneva stamped patio.

Concrete is a versatile material, offering home and business owners the flexibility to color or stamp concrete to create patterns as unique as the homeowners or business owner. Colored or stamped concrete will beautify and add value to your home or business.

Furthermore, concrete won’t rust, rot or burn, making it perfect for years. And concrete remains cool to the touch in hot weather, opposed to asphalt which can be scorching in the hot summer sun.

To learn more about concrete and cement, and how we can use it to beautify your home or business, contact us today.

Concrete and Cement