How to Paint a Concrete Patio
Can you paint a concrete patio or porch? Yes, you sure can! Read how to paint a concrete patio (even if it’s cracked) and which concrete patio paint we used and recommend — and how it’s holding up almost 4 years later.
See more ideas in 9 Ways to Update a Concrete Patio, or learn to lay your own new concrete patio like we did here.
DIY Painted Concrete Patio
One of the things I love about our new house is the covered patio space. We spend so much time out there!
The covered concrete patio is the perfect outdoor space to relax and chat and though we haven’t had one yet, I think it will be really fun for family barbecues!
I know before we bought this house that our cute neighbors (who owned the house then) used it constantly!
When we first bought it, the concrete porch space looked like this. Plain old concrete, cracked in a few spots but still in pretty good condition.
How to Paint a Concrete Patio
Thank you to DRYLOK® for partnering with us to update our patio! I am SO excited about this space now! All opinions are my own; this post contains affiliate links. Read our full disclosure policy here.
The patio itself is 40 years old this June! So, while it is totally functional the concrete has seen better days… and #reallife – since it is just after winter, the patio has seen much better, more organized days.
So we decided to paint the patio.
Rather than using a regular exterior latex paint, we chose a specific concrete patio paint from our partners at DryLok. The paint is formulated to be moisture proof and durable on concrete surfaces like porches, patios, and garage floors. It can also be non-slip (see the no-skid additive below) so all this work will last for years and be safe for our family.
We’ve just been sort of stacking things in this disorganized patio space, including our DIY outdoor sectional and outdoor coffee table with drink trough that we built last year.
And I apologize to my patio for showing you these pictures, and it may be a little embarrassed to show itself to you today…
How to Paint a Concrete Patio – Clutter be gone!
First things first: we slowly emptied the whole space out. We moved this table to our deck at our office.
Then, we loaded up our trusty little trailer (hooked onto our 4 wheeler) and parked everything in the garage, which was a good thing, because the weather has been HORRENDOUS!!
How to Prep a Concrete Patio for Painting
First, the concrete patio surface needed prepped to be free of debris and stains. Rather than scrub all day, we pressure washed the patio using a power washer and got any old paint drips and staining off that we could.
See our picks for great pressure washer machines here.
Seriously pressure washing old concrete is one of the most satisfying chores on the planet. It is amazing how much grime we got off! When we were done, we were left with this.
How to Paint a Concrete Patio – Removing Stains & Filling Cracks
Some of our problems:
- BIG cracks
- lots of staining from spills and grease
- water splash staining from rain and snow
- plant debris staining – it just blows onto the patio constantly!
This big stain pictured below, in particular, even after working with it and the pressure washer, it just wouldn’t get off!
The cracks were already filled with silicone, which the paint can’t stick to, so we had to clean that out.
Because of a lot of settling over the years the pieces had lifted to slightly different levels, so we chose to grind them down to be nice and flat and smooth.
Justin used a handheld plugin grinder tool with a diamond bit grinder blade in about a 4 inch diameter.
Poor Guy! This work was pretty back breaking for sure and DUSTY!!
All ground down the cracks now looked like this:
How to Paint a Concrete Patio – Fill the Cracks
We had to do a ton of vacuuming to get up the dust that was everywhere!
But we wanted to keep the patio clean throughout the process which ended up talking about a month+ between other projects (I know!) Because the weather couldn’t make up its mind. It literally snowed 4 times… and to follow the manufacturer’s instructions, you need it to be dry AND a minimum temperature!
Anywho, we just kept plugging along. Next was filling the cracks, with DRYLOK® Concrete Patch.
It took a bit to get it right, we actually ended up having to do two coats to fill in all the settling.
We ground down the crack filler afterward.
In hindsight we should have been a lot more careful applying it the first time, because grinding it smooth did cause it to flake and break in some places.
Ultimately, we just embraced it, and you will be shocked what the paint hides!
How to Paint a Concrete Patio with Epoxy Floor Paint
As for the color, I didn’t want the concrete to be too far off of an actual concrete color.
(I may decide to go more bold and choose another color, if we ever do this again!)
But for now, I chose the DRYLOK® E1 1-Part Epoxy Floor Paint in Gray, and I am really happy with how much better it looks!
Also, because our kids run around back here all the time, I wanted to make sure that coming from damp grass to painted concrete wouldn’t be too slippery.
We decided to add the DRYLOK® Non-Skid Texture Additive.
How to Paint a Non-Slip Concrete Patio – Small Batches = No Clumps
We poured non-skid texture into the gallon paint can in little batches and mixed well to keep it from clumping.
Then the easy fun SUPER satisfying work began! The painting!!
Because the DRYLOCK Epoxy Floor Paint is formulated as a concrete patio paint, you do NOT need any primer!
I started by cutting it in on the edges using a wide brush, and then rolled the center using a wide paint roller on a pole (with a regular paint tray).
How to Paint a Concrete Patio – No More Stains & Cracks!
You can really see the amount of staining the paint covered up! And the best part is that I don’t even see that cracks anymore!
Additionally the epoxy paint went on SO smoothly! Quick and easy!
The first coat of paint drying in this picture, but you can really begin to see the difference this paint is making!
At this point, we could have used painter’s tape, and taped off and painted stripes or tile squares like Bekah did on her concrete porch, or used a stencil to create a pattern.
But, like I mentioned, we wanted to keep the neutral concrete look (and add a rug and furnishings) so we didn’t. But you could!
How to Paint a Concrete Patio – All Finished Up
This is how the painted patio looked all dry, after the second coat of paint.
Oh my goodness, it looks like a BRAND NEW PATIO!
40 never looked so good!
Using what we already had, we got the furniture back in place!
I also painted that back wall a big BRIGHT new color too! This was part of our outdoor dining space transformation, that you can see here.
I feel like every time I’ve stepped out the door I am in sunny Florida… and I LOVE it!… uh even though it was in the 30’s this morning, in MAY!
Related Reading: Boring Slab to Beautiful Patio Retreat
I want to paint the back door, maybe black or do you think it needs to be brighter??
I plan on painting the columns white like the bump out, and maybe thickening them up a bit and adding screens to screen it in from bugs and debris!
The only other change I can foresee, I feel like the DIY plywood sofas need maybe a more colorful cushion selection… and what about a prettier rug? Tell me in the comments what you think!
I am excited to plant our coffee table with some plants. I am craving green and beautiful living things!
So, I really think it is important to show you a before of the concrete…
Just a little crack filling and paint later and BAM: After! The difference is not subtle, it is HUGE even though the color change is subtle.
One last picture, it is a little fuzzy, but we have had a bunch of rain and even some snow again last night! UGH!
But the concrete doesn’t stain on all the edges anymore, and it drains so fast!
Before, rain or sprinkler moisture or condensation would soak in and discolor the edges for at least a few hours till it dried out, but it is really nice not to have that problem anymore!
(PS can you find the kids painted rocks in the little planter bed?!! Its real life around here… Obviously I also need to weed out the grass!)
Thank you to DRYLOK® for sponsoring this post, I am really excited to keep fluffing up this space, especially now that the foundation looks so clean.
Please be sure to check out what we did to update the old cinder block brick fence at my parents house a few years ago also with DRYLOK®!
This is such a wonderful product for outdoor concrete porches or patios, or for a garage floor. (All opinions are my own – we are really happy with our patio!)
4 Years Later: How the Painted Concrete Patio is Holding Up
We get asked a lot how the painted concrete patio has held up in the almost 4 years since we painted it. Our answer? Pretty good.
The painted concrete is holding up ok except where the water and snow sit on it. In those areas, water is getting underneath it a bit and causing it to peel off in spots. Places where it is mostly dry all the time are holding up great.
If we were to paint a concrete patio again, we’d look into using oil-based floor and porch paint as an alternative.
More porch and patio update ideas:
- 9 Ways to Make Over a Concrete Patio or Porch
- Easy Front Porch Update for Spring
- Front Porch Planters to Build or Buy
- 50 Fun 2×4 Projects for Your Patio and Yard
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of UGL. The opinions and text are all mine.
Great project. A word of advice on paint color, though. Make sure there’s good contrast between the floor and any stairs/steps. It’s very easy to miss a step if there’s not enough visual contrast between step and floor, even with a railing.
Great tip, Kim — thanks!
Hi Cassidy. Thanks so much for this post – so helpful! Did you need to use any sort of primer before using the Drylok products?
No primer needed for the product we used, but be sure to check the recommendations on whatever product you choose.
I purchased a lovely corbel pattern from you a few months ago and they turned out beautiful. I have made over fifty of them and they would really add a touch of class on your patio post.
I have neighbors that want me to make some for them also.
Hi there, I love this idea. Could this be done on a concrete basement floor? I’ve drylocked the walls, and painted the exposed ceiling. Had no idea what to do with the ugly floor, other than put down area rugs. Thanks.
You are welcome!
Nicely done! Thanks for sharing