How to Repair Exposed Aggregate Concrete

A driveway made of exposed aggregate concrete.
What You'll Need
Work gloves
Concrete mix
Special tape
Hose with sprayer attachment

Aggregate concrete is a popular decorative building material used to form driveways, sidewalks or other flat surfaces. Sometimes these wear out and there’s a need to repair the exposed aggregate concrete. Having it exposed is undesirable because it makes your sidewalk or driveway uneven and bumpy. While not as effective as completely putting in a new surface, you can repair the concrete by following these steps.

Step 1 - Prepare

As the saying goes, precaution is better than cure, so take proper precaution while working on the project. Put on work gloves to protect your hands from getting injured while you work on fixing the concrete areas on your sidewalk or driveway. Lay out all the materials you need to do the project.

Step 2 - Clean the Area to be Repaired

The exposed aggregate concrete needing repairs must first be cleaned and cleared of any dirt, debris, or stray pieces of grass. After sweeping with a broom, you can use the hose and sprayer attachment to wash any remaining dirt off the concrete. This is important because the new concrete won’t go down properly if the area is dirty. Plus, it wouldn’t look very nice to have pieces of grass or dirt hardened into the concrete.

Step 3 - Tape off Decorative Sections

A concrete driveway.

If your driveway or sidewalk has any areas of decoration that you don’t want to get ruined, use tape, such as duct or painters tape to cover it up. Only cover the areas that are absolutely necessary so you won't miss any cracks or open spaces when you are pouring the concrete.

Step 4 - Mix the Concrete

Mix the concrete according to the manufacturer's directions. Take your shovel and carefully pour the concrete into the areas where your exposed aggregate concrete needs to be patched. Make sure to get enough concrete into the areas that need to be repaired. After you have patched the areas, be sure to take off any tape you used to protect the decorative areas. If you don’t remember to do this, the tape will harden into the concrete and be trapped inside.

Step 5 - Smooth the Area

Take your trowel and carefully smooth out the areas where you fixed the exposed aggregate concrete. Be sure to do this fairly quickly before the concrete starts to get hard. Only put down as much concrete as needed and do one section at a time if you have multiple sections to repair.

Step 6 - Add Finishing Touches

A concrete driveway.

Wait until the concrete completely sets and is hard to the touch. This can take several minutes to a couple of hours depending on the type of concrete you used to repair the exposed aggregate concrete areas.