Follow these Top 10 Tips for a successful Deco-Strip application, compiled from frequently asked questions and real customer applications.
1. Always perform a site test.
Every decorative concrete surface is different. Concrete porosity, sealer type, number of sealer coats and environmental conditions can affect Deco-Strip’s performance. Apply Deco-Strip to a 12 x 12 inch area to determine the appropriate application rate and time required to dissolve the acrylic sealer – before proceeding with a broad project application.
2. Know your sealer.
Deco-Strip is made for acrylic sealers. Deco-Strip is not designed to remove polyurethane or epoxy sealers or coatings.
3. Account for layers.
Multiple layers of acrylic sealer require several Deco-Strip applications. If the surface has numerous coats of acrylic sealer, the entire acrylic coating may not generally become soft with the first application of Deco-Strip. Apply additional coats of Deco-Strip, pressure-washing in between coats, until all of the acrylic sealer has been removed.
4. Apply to small areas.
Apply Deco-Strip to small areas at a time, 100-400 sq. ft., depending on temperature conditions, wind, sun angle, etc. If applied to larger areas, it may become difficult to keep the surface wet with Deco-Strip due to rapid evaporation.
5. Pressure wash from the outside in.
For a rectangular area, start at the far edge and work the pressure washer back towards the near edge – walk backwards spraying away from yourself. If pressure washing on an incline, work from bottom to top - walk backwards uphill spraying downhill away from yourself. Do not push the runoff water, created by the pressure washer, onto an area where sealer is still being dissolved by Deco-Strip. Runoff water may dilute Deco-Strip causing the acrylic sealer to reharden before it is pressure washed off.
6. Protect finished surfaces.
Cover all adjacent areas not meant to receive Deco-Strip, such as painted surfaces and patio furniture, with plastic sheathing to protect from accidental splatter. Lawn and plants may either be covered or pre-wetted with water and rinsed heavily after the Deco-Strip application.
7. Don’t let it dry.
Reapply Deco-Strip to keep surface wet until it is ready to be pressure washed. If the surface is allowed to dry, the acrylic sealer will reharden. When ready, the acrylic sealer will be soft all the way through, indicating it is time to pressure wash.
8. Use a powerful pressure washer.
Best results are achieved when a minimum 2,500 psi pressure washer is used to remove the softened acrylic sealer. The use of higher pressure or hot water can improve performance. Care should be taken to avoid damaging decorative concrete by holding the pressure washer too close to the surface.
9. Don’t apply in direct sunlight.
To avoid rapid evaporation, it is best to apply Deco-Strip out of direct sunlight at low sun angles such as in the morning or evening. Application in direct sunlight requires more coats to achieve complete sealer removal, as the solvent can flash off the surface very quickly at high temperatures.
10. Wait 24 hours before resealing.
Allow a minimum of 24 hours of dry time after pressure washing Deco-Strip before applying a fresh sealer coating. This lets the Deco-Strip completely evaporate out of the concrete surface. Longer dry times (more than 24 hours) between Deco-Strip and application of an acrylic sealer may be necessary under poor drying conditions.