How to Stamp Concrete Yourself

Stamping concrete is an easy way to take an otherwise plain concrete surface beautiful and interesting. Paying a contractor to stamp concrete for you may be costly, however, so stamping your own decorative concrete is a more attractive option if working with concrete does not intimidate you.

Things You'll Need

  • Concrete release agent
  • Texture mats
  • Hand tamp
  • Concrete sealer

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Spread a concrete release agent on top of the freshly poured slab of concrete. The release agent is a powder that you need to carefully and thinly spread over the concrete slab to ensure the concrete stamp mats do not stick to the concrete. You can use a release agent that is colored if you prefer. If it is colored, be sure to choose a color that complements the color of your concrete slab, as a small percentage of the agent will not be removed at the end of the project, and as a result it will change the final color of the slab.

Place the texture mats carefully in place, making sure to align straight edges if there are any. Make sure the texture mats are right next to each other and slightly overlapping, if the pattern or texture allows for it.

Tamp the mat lightly into the concrete, using a hand tamp. Do not push the mat down too far as to disturb the quality of the final surface but make sure to stamp firmly enough to transfer the texture from the concrete stamp mat to the slab.

Move your stamp mats one by one along your concrete slab while you tamp the stamp pattern into the concrete. If you have helpers, ask them to move one mat while you tamp the other, until your entire slab or portion of concrete surface has been properly stamped.

One day after you have completed the concrete stamping process, wash the textured and stamped surface (assuming the concrete has initially set) to remove the excess concrete release agent powder from the project site. The concrete slab should not be fully cured at this time but the surface should be firm enough to stand up to a power wash.

When the concrete slab has been fully stamped, cleaned of release agent residue and cured, apply concrete sealer according to the specific manufacturer instructions of your sealer product. The sealer helps ensure your decorative concrete stamp and underlying slab hold up to the elements.

Tips & Warnings

  • Make sure the concrete release agent powder does not clump as you place it on the concrete slab. If you stamp concrete on top of clumped release agent, your pattern will not be exact and the release may be problematic.
  • Work quickly while the poured concrete slab has the optimal texture and consistency.
  • Do not begin a project like this if there is a chance for rain.

References

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