How to Stain a Concrete Driveway

Fresh asphalt driveway and home exterior.
  • 4-6 hours
  • Beginner
  • 40-70
What You'll Need
Garden hose
Liquid soap
Concrete stain
Concrete sealer
Scrub brush
Wire brush
Breathing mask
Safety goggles
Protective gloves
Paint tray
Long-handled paint roller

If you're looking for a fantastic way to breathe some new life into a fairly bland driveway, you should know how to stain a concrete driveway. Staining a concrete driveway is a simple and cost-effective way to touch up the outside of your home and is sure to draw the envy of your friends and neighbors. Below are the steps you will need to follow in order to successfully stain your concrete driveway.

Step 1 - Clean Your Soon-to-be-Stained Driveway

Before you will be able to stain your concrete driveway, you will need to give it a thorough cleaning. Also, make sure you repair cracks. Start this step by using a garden hose to vigorously spray the driveway, as this will get rid of any loose pieces of filth. Additionally, if you are carrying out this task during the fall season, take care to rake or sweep any leaves that may have found their way onto your driveway before proceeding any further.

Once all the prep work has been done, combine a sudsy mixture of water and liquid soap in a large clean bucket. Ideally, the soap used to produce this mixture should be of the all-natural variety in order to prevent any strange chemical reactions with the concrete stain you will be applying later on in the process and offer an eco-friendly runoff. After your soap-and-water solution has taken shape, you will need to apply it to your driveway with a mop and proceed to give the entire area a good scrubbing. Make a point of paying special attention to any oil stains or stubborn bits of debris, as purging these may require the aid of a wire brush. Once your concrete driveway is nice and clean, give the area another thorough hose-rinsing to remove your homemade cleaning solution. Give the freshly cleaned driveway ample time to air dry before proceeding with the next step.

Step 2 - Stain Your Concrete Driveway

cleaning driveway with water sprayer

With the area sparkly clean, you may now proceed to stain your concrete driveway. Kick-off this step by ensuring that you are well-protected, as concrete stain carries some powerful fumes and can cause problems if it comes into contact with your skin. Thus, you will need to perform this job sporting a pair of protective gloves, a pair of safety goggles and a breathing mask. Additionally, it is recommended that you wear long pants and a long-sleeved shirt while applying your stain.

After donning the appropriate attire, pour some of the concrete stain into a paint tray and proceed to load up a long-handled paint roller. Next, begin applying the stain to your concrete driveway in broad, even vertical strokes. Continue in this fashion until the entire driveway has been coated in stain. If you wish to apply any additional coats, make sure your initial coat has been given time to fully dry before proceeding to do so. Also, depending on the brand of stain you purchase, one coat may be sufficient.

Step 3 - Apply Your Concrete Sealer

driveway with wet sealer

After your final coat of stain has been applied and has had plenty of time to dry, it is recommended that you give the driveway an added layer of protection by applying a layer of concrete sealer. The sealer can be applied in the exact same manner as your stain, although in the interest of avoiding chemical reactions and harmful fumes, make sure to don the previously specified protective gear and use a clean paint roller and paint tray for the sealer application.