Homes and businesses may feature a host of concrete surfaces, from driveways to garage floors to patios and more. Concrete’s prominence as a construction material can be attributed to its versatility, beauty, and durability. But just because concrete can withstand high amounts of pressure and wear and tear doesn’t mean this material lacks the need for regular maintenance. Indeed, if you want to get the most out of your concrete surfaces, you need to take good care of them, just as you would with the rest of your property.

The most efficient way to keep up your concrete is via power washing. This method sends a high-pressure blast of water and detergent toward the concrete, removing dirt, debris, grease, and contaminants in the process. The question remains, though, how often should you power wash your concrete to keep it clean, durable, and pleasing to the eye? 

The short answer is that it depends. Let’s dig into the factors that determine how often you should wash your concrete.

Take Traffic into Account

It may seem obvious, but the necessary frequency of concrete washing largely depends on the amount of activity the surface undergoes. For instance, a commercial concrete parking lot that experiences the movement of several vehicles and pedestrians each and every day will require more maintenance than a residential patio that’s mostly used during the spring and summer. 

Of course, this maintenance can come in many forms aside from merely power washing. A business might employ cleaners to sweep and mop its concrete once or twice a week just to stay on top of things. Then, they might perform power washing on a quarterly basis, or twice a year.

For concrete surfaces with minimal traffic, power washing might only be necessary once every two years or so. That said, most experts would recommend that you wash your concrete at least once a year just to be safe.

Inside or Outside?

The location of your concrete matters, too– namely whether it’s exposed to the elements or sheltered. Consider that traffic, sunlight, wind, rain, snow, and other environmental factors can take a major toll on concrete. As such, exterior concrete naturally puts up with more than interior concrete, and therefore requires more frequent maintenance. So, while you may only power wash your concrete garage floor once every two years, you might consider power washing your patio twice as often, especially in the spring to clear away the mess winter left behind. Additionally, you might hire exterior painters to protect your surfaces.

Sealing the Deal

As mentioned previously, power washing your concrete is just one of many ways to maintain it thoroughly. Sealing your concrete is a powerful way to protect the surface from various forms of damage, such as moisture, sunlight, and impact. Of course, hiring a flooring or painting business to seal your concrete floors doesn’t negate the need to wash them. It simply makes cleaning easier and often more effective, and may reduce the frequency with which you need to power wash them. 

Just note that power washing certain types of floor sealers can actually damage them. Always use the proper pressure ratings, heat settings, nozzles, and detergents before blasting your sealed concrete surfaces.

The Verdict

Unfortunately, there’s no single answer to the question, “How often do you need to wash your concrete?” Generally speaking, washing them once a year is a good rule of thumb. But you may perform concrete washing more or less frequently depending on the level of activity the concrete experiences, whether it’s inside or outside, and if it’s bare or sealed.

Need more advice and tips on cleaning your concrete? All American Painting Plus can help. In addition to our interior and exterior painting services, we offer power washing, concrete cleaning, and many more services to keep your property in the best shape possible. To learn more about us and everything else we offer our clients in Northern Virginia, give us a call at (703) 620-5563!