If you have a stunning hardscape, pathway stones, a paver patio, or a stone outdoor fireplace, you obviously love using natural materials. In fact, they’re all very popular and for good reason – they’re stunning and long lasting. Atlanta homeowners are investing in their outdoor living areas because they want to be more in tune with nature and with their outdoor surroundings. What better materials to use than natural or cultured stone? Stone, whether natural or cultured, is a highly sought after outdoor living material choice throughout the Atlanta area. We love the look of stack stone outdoor fireplaces, stone seating and retaining walls, and using flagstone in patios and walkways. The lack of uniformity from one piece of stone to the next is is the beauty of the medium.
But, when we have a builder design and install our new space, we often don’t think about how we’re going to maintain it or if a maintenance option is available. After all, with some surfaces, weathering and aging give the surfaces character and even more charm. But what about when that aging includes mold, mildew, staining, or presumed fading? If you take a look at the picture above, you will see the subtle but beautiful color variation from stone to stone. Believe it or not, the image on the right above is the “after” photo. The one on the left is how the outdoor fireplace looked when we arrived. The after photo looks as good as new.
Flagstone is another very popular surface that is defined by the color variations within a particular lot. While the flagstone might be from a lot from an Oklahoma collection, an Arizona collection, or a Tennessee collection, those lots are grouped by the particular hue. These might include Oklahoma buff peach, Tennessee gray, Arizona buckskin, or Pennsylvania bluestone. As you can see in the picture below, all the beautiful natural variation of the flagstone was dulled by dirt and dust that had adhered to the surface over time and use.
Regardless of the stone you have in your pathway, entryway, or in your hardscape, here is a way to see if it needs to be cleaned. Can you see the natural color variation present in natural stone? Do you see any green hue attached to particular areas that likely are mold or mildew? Do you see any stray dark marks that indicate staining? If you know the stone has a lot of natural variation, has the variation dulled to where the color looks more uniform than desired? You may also notice the remnants of a botched cleaning attempt. These may include streaked lines where someone tried to clean the surface using a high pressure spray. A high pressure washer should never be used to try to clean any outdoor surfaces! You may also notice a “clean stain”. This may be an area where someone tried to use Clorox to clean an area and instead bleached or damaged the material. Another note… don’t ever try to use bleach to clean an outdoor surface.
You might be wondering how Renew Crew of Atlanta cleans these surfaces. There are a couple key steps. The first step is a gentle but effective cleaning that will both lift the ground in surface dirt and also wash it away. Make sure the company has a cleaning product that is safe on your surface and safe on your environment. The last thing you want is a clean surface but badly damaged surrounding landscape. After successful cleaning, Renew Crew applies a protective seal that even further enhances the natural color of your surface. The protective seal should keep your surface looking good for one or more years.
If you are looking for someone to clean your Atlanta area outdoor stone surfaces, give us a call for a free quote.
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Take a look at our hardscape, stone, and patio cleaning page on our website