Outdoor Concrete Polishing: Benefits, Equipment, & Maintenance

Are you sick of looking at your patio or walkway that is dull and stained?

Do you want to give the areas outside your home a clean, new look?

Concrete cleaning is the only thing you need to do. This new way of cleaning not only gets rid of tough spots and dirt, but it also makes your concrete look better. Say goodbye to surfaces that don't look good and hello to a finish that is sleek and current. In this article, I'll go into detail about concrete polishing and explain why it's the best way to update your outdoor space. So, let's get a cup of coffee and get started!

Concrete Polishing

Benefits of Concrete Polishing

Polished concrete is a popular flooring material in business, retail, industrial, and residential settings because it is durable and easy to keep clean.

It gets rid of the need for messy waxes or coats and the work, time, and money that comes with them.

Polished concrete floors are also less likely to get stained or worn down, making them a great choice for places with a lot of foot traffic.

The Process of Concrete Polishing

In order to clean concrete, diamond floor grinders are used to sand the surface of the concrete.

The size of the grit in the grinder is one of the most important parts of cleaning.

The floor will be smoother and shine more if the grit is higher.

The process gets rid of any flaws, fixes the surface, and makes the concrete more stain- and wear-resistant.

The first step is to clean the concrete surface well to get rid of any dirt or other things on it.

Once the surface is clean, a diamond floor grinder is used to grind and smooth the top of the concrete.

The process starts with a coarse grit and goes gradually to a finer grit until the smoothness and reflectivity are where they need to be.

After the concrete has been ground and smoothed, a hardener or densifier is put on the surface to make it harder and seal it.

This makes the concrete stronger and less porous, which makes it less likely to get stained or worn down.

The last step is to polish the concrete surface until it has a high-gloss shine.

Compared to Other Concrete Cleaning Methods

Polishing concrete is a mechanical process that can give results that last longer than other ways of cleaning concrete.

Mechanically polished floors get their shine from the flat surface of the concrete, not by adding something to it.

Floors that are properly cleaned have been worked on by machines, and the shine comes from the flat surface of the concrete.

Other ways to clean concrete, like concrete resurfacing, use a brand-new concrete coating to bring back the shine of the floor.

Benefits of Concrete Polishing

Concrete cleaning could be the answer if you want to make your outdoor surfaces last longer and need less care.

This process includes grinding, honing, and polishing the concrete to make a smooth, shiny surface that has many benefits.

Let's look at them in more depth.

1. Durability

One of the best things about polished concrete is that it is strong and lasts a long time.

Concrete polishing makes the concrete stronger and more resistant to wear and tear by getting rid of flaws and repairing the surface.

Chemical densifiers can also strengthen and seal the concrete, making it even stronger and more durable.

This means that smooth concrete can stand up to a lot of people walking on it, bad weather, and even cars driving on it without cracking or chipping.

Because of this, the costs of upkeep over the whole life cycle are low, and the useful life is long.

2. Easy Maintenance

Another good thing about smooth concrete is that it doesn't need much upkeep.

Unlike unpolished concrete, polished concrete doesn't stain and can't be cleaned with most goods or methods.

This means that cleaning and upkeep are easy and cheap to do on a regular basis.

To keep the surface clean and shiny, all you need is a wet mop and a mild cleaner.

Polished concrete also gets rid of the need for waxes or coats, which can be messy and take a lot of time and money to put on.

3. Stain Resistance

Polished concrete doesn't get dirty easily, so it's great for outdoor areas.

It stops efflorescence from making dust and can handle more foot traffic.

Polished concrete has a smooth, shiny surface that can't be marked by forklift tires or stained by oil or chemicals.

This means that you don't have to worry about spots or discoloration that could make your outdoor areas look bad.

And if something does get spilled on it, it's easy to clean up without leaving a mark.

4. Improved Reflectivity

Polished concrete is better at reflecting light and letting in natural light, which can lower energy costs.

Polished concrete has a smooth surface that reflects light, which means it doesn't need as much artificial lighting.

This means you can save money on your power bills and enjoy a brighter, friendlier outdoor space.

Whether you're having people over, working outside, or just taking a break, smooth concrete can make your outdoor space feel more comfortable and inviting.

5. Environmental Friendliness

Last but not least, polished concrete is good for the earth.

Polishing has less of an effect on the earth than other types of flooring.

Polishing gives concrete or terrazzo floors a new use, so they don't have to be torn up or replaced.

This saves materials and money.

Synthetic diamonds are used in a dry, slurry-free method.

This means that there are no VOCs, slurry, or smells from the application.

This means that you can use polished concrete without hurting the earth or putting your health at risk.

Outdoor Concrete Polishing

Honed Concrete for Outdoor Areas

Honed concrete can be used for outdoor areas, but highly polished concrete shouldn't be used in places that might get wet or damp.

Honed concrete has a matte finish and doesn't get slippery.

The shine is better the smaller the diamond grit that was used.

Honed concrete is made by using different levels of diamond grit to grind and polish the concrete floors to the desired level of shine.

Polished Concrete for Environmental Benefits

Polished concrete is good for the environment because it can be put on top of existing concrete or terrazzo floors.

This means that the floors don't have to be torn up or replaced, which saves materials.

The polishing process is a mix of mechanical and chemical steps that are done in a specific order and can only be mastered with skill and time.

The chemical part is done with a product called a hardener or densifier.

The mechanical part is done by grinding and sharpening with special tools and abrasives.

Polished concrete doesn't get stained and can't be damaged by the roughness of most cleaning products and methods.

Cleaning Different Types of Outdoor Surfaces

Depending on the surface, you can polish different kinds of outdoor areas.

PROTERO® Metal shine is a safe cleaner that doesn't use aerosols.

It can be used to shine surfaces made of stainless steel, plastic laminate, painted metal, and wood.

It is strong enough to use outside, but soft enough to use in the house.

PROTERO also keeps tools safe from things like UV damage and the weather.

Simple Green Oxy Solve House and Siding Cleaner cleans mold, mildew, moss, algae, and other spots and dirt from a wide range of surfaces, including stucco.

Outdoor Furniture Cleaning Tips

Stainless steel, cast iron, aluminum, and tubular steel are all types of metal that can be used to make outdoor furniture.

A microfiber cloth and metal polish can be used to clean and shine these materials.

Aluminum furniture that hasn't been finished should be washed and dried.

If the metal furniture has a powder-coat finish and there are scratches on the hard gloss surface, you can fix them with a touch-up pen.

Outdoor furniture made of PVC, resin, or plastic can be cleaned with a solution of light soap and water.

Cleaning Low-Touch Outdoor Surfaces

It's important to remember that not every surface outside needs to be cleaned.

It is not necessary, effective, or suggested to spray cleaning or disinfecting products on outdoor surfaces that are not touched often, like sidewalks, roads, or groundcover.

When cleaning playground equipment that is used outside, the first step is to get rid of dirt and grime.

When playground equipment is used a lot, it can get dirty fast.

Sticky hands and dirty or dusty shoes can make surfaces dirty and in need of a good cleaning.

Owners of playgrounds should have a plan for upkeep that includes cleaning the surfaces with a product made for that material, whether it's plastic or metal.

Equipment and Process

Equipment Required

To clean outdoor areas, you need the following tools:

  • Pressure washer: A pressure washer is an essential piece of equipment for cleaning outdoor surfaces. It uses high-pressure water to remove dirt, grime, and other debris from surfaces such as concrete, brick, and stone.
  • Surface cleaner: A surface cleaner is a tool that attaches to a pressure washer and is used to clean large, flat surfaces such as driveways, patios, and sidewalks.
  • Cleaning solution: A cleaning solution is used to break down dirt and grime on surfaces. There are many different types of cleaning solutions available, depending on the surface being cleaned.


The following steps are part of the process for cleaning outdoor surfaces:

1. Prepare the area. Before you start cleaning, remove any loose dirt, leaves, or sticks from the surface you will be cleaning.

2. Apply cleaning solution: Follow the guidelines on the bottle to apply the cleaning solution to the surface you want to clean. Let the solution sit for a few minutes so that the dirt and grime can be broken down.

3. Clean the surface with a pressure washer. Once the cleaning solution has had time to work, use the pressure washer to clean the surface. Start at the top and work your way down, using the surface cleaner for big, flat areas.

4. Rinse the surface. After using pressure to clean the surface, rinse it well with clean water.

5. Let the surface dry: Before you use the surface, let it dry all the way.

Time Required

How long it takes to clean outdoor surfaces varies on a number of things, such as the surface's size and condition, the type of cleaning solution used, and the tools that are being used.

Most of the time, it takes a few hours to clean a driveway or patio that is about normal size.

DIY or Professional

DIY Cleaning

There are a few things to keep in mind if you want to clean your outdoor areas yourself.

First, you'll have to pick which way to clean it.

Some common ways to do things are:

  • Pressure washing: This involves using a high-pressure water spray to remove dirt and grime from surfaces such as concrete, brick, and wood.
  • Scrubbing: This involves using a brush and cleaning solution to scrub away dirt and stains.
  • Chemical cleaning: This involves using a chemical solution to dissolve dirt and grime.

DIY cleaning can save you money, but you should be aware that it can also take a lot of time and work.

Also, you might not be able to get the results you want if you don't have the right tools or cleaning products.

Professional Cleaning

If you don't have the time or skills to clean your outdoor surfaces yourself, it might be a good idea to hire a pro.

Professional cleaners have the tools, skills, and experience to do the job quickly and well.

Some of the reasons to hire a skilled cleaner are:

  • Quality results: Professional cleaners use high-quality equipment and cleaning solutions to ensure that your outdoor surfaces are thoroughly cleaned.
  • Time-saving: Professional cleaners can complete the job quickly, allowing you to spend your time on other tasks.
  • Expertise: Professional cleaners have the knowledge and experience to identify the best cleaning method for your specific outdoor surfaces.

But you should know that hiring a skilled cleaner can be pricey.

When choosing whether to hire a pro or do it yourself, you'll need to think about the cost of labor and tools.


It's important to keep outdoor surfaces clean to keep their worth and keep them looking new.

Regular cleaning can also stop germs and bacteria from spreading and help stop damage from weather.

Here are some tips for keeping outdoor areas in good shape:

Frequency of Cleaning

How often you need to polish an outdoor surface relies on the type of surface and how much traffic it gets.

As a general rule, the outside, entrances, steps, parking lots, and dumpster areas of an office building should be power washed at least twice a year to prevent dirt, grease, and other things from building up.

Door knobs, stair rails, elevator buttons, and touchpads should be cleaned often, especially in places where a lot of people walk by.

Every six months, you should wash the inside and outside of your windows to keep your view clear.

At least once a season, patio furniture should be cleaned to keep dust, pollen, and weather from building up.

Use the Right Cleaner

Different outdoor surfaces need different ways and tools to clean them.

Think about the stains as well as the area that needs to be cleaned.

Rust and rusting need cleaners that are different from grease and oils.

Organic spots like algae, mold, and mildew will also require a different kind of cleaner.

No one cleaner will be able to handle all of these problems well.

Make sure to rinse the area well after you're done cleaning it.

Avoid Abrasive Cleaners

Abrasive cleaners can hurt and scratch surfaces that have been polished.

Use water and mild soap or a cleaner made just for the area you're cleaning.

Dry the Surface

If you don't want water spots and streaks, make sure to dry the area well after cleaning. Use a soft cloth or let it dry naturally.

Buff Out Scratches

Use steel wool to get rid of any rust or rusting on metal furniture that has scratches.

Use metal polish and a microfiber cloth to smooth out scratches and restore shine on aluminum furniture that hasn't been finished.

Apply a Protective Coating

Apply a coating to outdoor objects to keep them from getting damaged by the weather.

For example, you could put car wax on wrought iron furniture to make it shine again and keep it from rust.

Final analysis and implications

So, you want to clean the outside of your house? Well, I can tell you that cleaning concrete might be the answer you've been looking for. Not only does it make your concrete look new and shiny, but it also protects it from further wear and tear.

But here's the thing: cleaning concrete isn't just about making it look nice. It's about making things last. By polishing your concrete instead of changing it, you're wasting less and making less of an impact on the environment. Also, smooth concrete is better for the environment because it reflects light and cuts down on the need for artificial lighting.

I know what you're probably thinking. But, isn't polishing concrete expensive? It's true that it can be a bit more expensive than other ways to clean, but you should think about the long-term rewards. Polished concrete lasts longer and needs less upkeep, so in the long run, it saves you money.

So, if you want a long-lasting and inexpensive way to clean your outdoor surfaces, you might want to think about concrete cleaning. Not only will it make your concrete look nice, but it will also help make the world a better place to live in the future.

In the end, it all comes down to making choices that are good for us and good for the world. Who would have thought that something as easy as polishing concrete could make such a big difference?

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The Best Pressure Washer (For You!)The Best Pressure Washer (For You!)

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Links and references

  1. "Polishing Concrete: A Durability + Design Collection" by Gary Henry
  2. "Concrete Grinding Learner Guide" by the Commonwealth of Australia
  3. 0 2-13-20

    My article on the topic:

    pw1Clean Concrete: Tips & Tricks

    Self-reminder: (Article status: sketch)

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