When you think about driveways, patios, and decks, the first thing that comes to mind is bricklaying and conventional concrete paving.
But it appears that there’s an even better alternative to this traditional paving and that is liquid limestone. With its ability to be formed into any shape, liquid limestone is a great choice for any landscape projects. The natural look of liquid limestone adds beauty to high traffic areas such as pathways and driveways and it can also be used for garden beds. This adds significant value and curb appeal to your property that concrete simply can’t replicate.
Regular care and maintenance will go a long way in ensuring that your driveway looks good as new. Today we’ll be discussing how to keep your limestone driveway clean & polished.
First off, what is liquid limestone?
Liquid limestone is a combination of concrete, limestone, and other materials that are primarily used for patios, pool surroundings, pathways, and driveways. Liquid limestone has all the qualities and strengths of concrete, but it’s also susceptible to dirt and other stains. Unlike cement, liquid limestone paving doesn’t raise the surrounding air and is relatively cold underfoot.
The strength properties of liquid limestone come primarily from the cement. Think of it like a glue that bonds all of the crumbly rocks together. Once the limestone aggregate is held down by the cement, its compressive strength is much higher than concrete because there is reduced lateral shear. Keep in mind that different types and grades of cement will affect the overall strength of the liquid limestone. It’s best to discuss the mix strength with your contractor before the liquid limestone is poured.
Some benefits of liquid limestone are that it can be poured into any shape you desire. Because of the way it’s laid, it gives a natural appearance to any landscape project whilst keeping its strength properties. Keep in mind that limestone is porous and if you leave it unprotected, it can develop problems such as staining and algae formation. To prevent this, a sealant is applied that makes the liquid limestone resistant to stains and make it easier to clean the surface.
How to properly maintain liquid limestone
Once the liquid limestone is paved and a sealant is applied, regular maintenance is imperative in order to keep it in pristine condition. It’s important to note that liquid limestone is prone to developing moulds, especially when it is paved near the pool or in shady areas. We recommend pressure-washing your limestone driveway at least twice a month to prevent mould accumulation.
1. Use a pressure wash
Because liquid limestone is porous, spores, bacteria, and algae have a chance to develop and ruin the exquisite look of your driveway. Along with a high-pressure wash, treat your limestone driveway with a mixture of water and chlorine. This will kill off any unwanted microorganisms that could potentially stain the limestone. Be careful to not be too aggressive with the pressure washing as this can cause damage to your limestone driveway. Ideally, you want to pre-treat it with a patio cleaner before you start pressure washing to prevent unwanted damages.
2. Scrub regularly
Scrubbing is an important part of limestone maintenance. Regularly scrubbing the surfaces will ensure a clean and polished look. Moulds and mildew can accumulate between the crevices and you want to make sure that you thoroughly brush these areas properly when cleaning. Sometimes people use rubbing alcohol to clean their limestone driveway, but we advise against this and you’re much better off using a water and chlorine solution which is much safer for the environment.
3. Use a chemical-free sealer
Sealing your limestone driveway is essential if you want to prolong its polished look. Be sure to use a chemical-free sealer and apply two coats on the surface of your limestone driveway to protect it against the elements. This will minimize spots and stain formation, thus reducing the frequency of maintenance for your limestone driveway. When applying the sealer, leave a few minutes in between coats before re-applying. If the sealer hasn’t fully penetrated the limestone and there’s a visible white residue on top, use a roller sponge to wipe it clean for that neatly polished look.
Why liquid limestone cleaning is important
Liquid limestone is very porous and regular cleaning should not be overlooked. The tiny holes in the liquid limestone can become a breeding ground where bacteria and algae can gain footing. Not only will these contribute to unwanted stains, but it’ll also accelerate weathering and erosion over time. If you want to avoid cracks in your limestone driveway, it’s essential that you conduct regular maintenance.
Porous substances are susceptible to rising damp. Rising damp is when moisture from the ground moves up the surface and encourage mould and mildew growth. It can also cause film forming sealers to delaminate. If you live in low-lying areas with high humidity levels, rising damp can cause quite a few issues with your limestone driveway. This means that your limestone driveway will require frequent upkeep in order to maintain its condition.
Liquid limestone is one of the most popular materials for outdoor landscape projects. Its strength properties and natural stone look are what makes it an appealing choice for people who want a decorative concrete product. But its porous nature can somewhat make it a challenging task to clean and maintain. With these following tips, you’ll be able to keep your limestone driveway in pristine condition and potentially help increase the curb appeal of your home as well.