Last Thursday, the weather was lovely. It was sunny, wasn’t too hot, and there was a light breeze. It was the perfect day to get the patio under our deck painted. Oh, this patio was so sad and neglected. It felt so good to finally give it some attention!
Before we could paint, we had to get it all cleaned up. We did the majority of that during one of our family workdays. We burned the sticks, bagged the trash, put things in the garage that we wanted to keep (like the cinderblocks) and power washed the dirt and debris off.
It looked so much better after a good cleaning, but the power washer (we have THIS ONE) did not remove the paint splatters from when the previous owners painted the deck. The best option was to prime and paint to achieve a nice, clean surface.
I started by edging around the concrete pad. This would not only look nicer, but it would get the grass away from the surface I was painting. I used the Ames manual edger, which has worked great around the garden beds. It’s one of my new favorite tools!
I just inserted the blade…
Stepped on it with my foot to push the blade in all the way…
(I garden and paint in style!)
And then I rocked it back and forth to create some separation between the concrete and the sod…
The result is a nice, neat edge!
I repeated this process all around the patio…
I followed with a broom to get any loose grass, leaves, etc. off the concrete and away from the edge.
To keep the grass out of the paint and the paint our of the grass, I inserted a scrap piece of plywood in the channel I made with the edger to act as a barrier as I was cutting in. It ended up working really well! A piece of cardboard would work also.
Once the patio was clean, dry, and as free from debris as I could get it, I applied the primer. For this project, I used Kilz Adhesion Interior/Exterior Primer.
I cut in around the edges with a 2 1/2″ angled sash brush…
…and then rolled on the rest with a 3/8″ nap roller. This is a great time to use an extension pole for the roller handle. It’ll save your back and knees and make the project go much faster.
It’s a pretty straightforward project and goes quickly. I had the primer applied in about 20 minutes. The primer will really soak into the concrete, so you will need more than you think. It took about 3/4 of a gallon to prime this small patio.
You do have to check perfectionism at the door when painting outside, though. The light breeze was perfect for helping the paint dry quickly, but that meant a leaf would shuffle across the patio as the wind carried it and small blades of grass seemed to migrate for the purpose of immortalizing themselves in the wet paint. I picked off and brushed away what I could, but ultimately, it was a losing battle.
I went inside to work on some other projects while I allowed the primer to dry. Already, it was a vast improvement!
For the paint, I used Kilz Concrete & Garage Floor Paint. This paint was surprisingly thin, but it covered well and didn’t show roller marks and brushstrokes. I probably could’ve gotten away with just one coat, but I decided to add one more coat after letting it dry for a few hours.
It was a project that didn’t take very long to complete and it looks amazing!
So, here are some answers to questions I’ve been asked as I’ve shared this project on Instagram…
Are you going to paint or stencil a design?
No. We are hoping to extend the patio at some point and would likely have this pad replaced, resurfaced, or covered with slate or some other stone. It has also settled so it’s sloping towards the house, so we would want to have that addressed to make water flow away from the foundation. All of that to say, I don’t want to spend a few hours on my knees painting a design when we’re going to eventually redo it. A clean coat of paint is enough for this project, but a pattern would look great if you’re working on a similar project. I would probably do a checkerboard pattern like my studio in white and the green on my front door.
Will the paint peel?
It probably will eventually. Most paints that are exposed to the elements will eventually peel, but I used a quality paint and primer that were made for exterior use, so they should hold up for several years. I’ll keep you posted, though!
Why did you choose to use paint over a concrete stain?
That was just a personal preference. I wanted to completely cover the old paint drips and they would likely still be visible under a stain. I also liked the idea of painting it a pale gray color.
I put out furniture and decorated the deck over the weekend and it looks like a totally different space.
I’ll share the final reveal soon!