So you’ve got yourself a handsome piece of concrete furniture, and you’re wondering how to care for it. Of course. It’s not every day that you bring a chunk of concrete into the house.
At Lyon Béton, we often say that buying a piece of concrete furniture is a commitment.
It’s an object that will enter into your daily routines, that will stick around for a long time, that will grow and change along with you.
Concrete is durable, but you still have to care for it. Especially if you want to pass it on to your heirs. It’s a bit like oiling a nice wooden table every once in a while or waxing a leather armchair to keep it soft.
All of our concrete furniture is treated at the manufacturing stage with water- and oil-repellent solutions (the latter helps protect against grease). This way, nothing can enter the pores of your concrete.
But as with all treatments, its lifespan will depend on how intensely you use your concrete furniture. For example, for a dining table with a concrete tabletop that you wipe down daily, the treatment fades more quickly than it might on a concrete chair.
When you see that the treatment has faded (water no longer beads on the surface), what do you do? There are two schools of thought.
There are the purists, who want their concrete furniture to be as it was on day one.
And there are the contemplatives, who like the idea that their possessions might come to reflect the conditions of their lives.
If you’re part of the first school of thought, all you have to do is apply a new treatment to waterproof your concrete. We suggest Lithofin’s Fleckstop W, which, in addition to being very effective, has a matte and transparent finish, making it invisible. This product is available in our care kit for concrete furniture. If you’re more of a contemplative, then hold tight! Continue contemplating your concrete furniture, which will gently patinate before your very eyes over the course of the years. That’s our preferred philosophy, at least.
If you have a dining table or a coffee table with a concrete tabletop, you’re going to find yourself wiping it down on a regular basis. In this case, don’t use any abrasive materials or cleaning products with solvents. In short, a damp rag or soft sponge will do the trick. If your table is dirtier than most (like, for example, if you have kids), you can wipe it down with the help of MN Easy Clean Spray from Lithofin. This product removes grease stains and reinforces the protective finish that is already on your concrete furniture, and it is also available in our care kit for concrete furniture.
So you forgot to clear off your concrete coffee table following your little get-together last night, and now there’s rings of wine and grease everywhere. Obviously, as with lots of materials, this is a situation to try and avoid. We’ve all been there. Thankfully, there’s hope for your concrete tabletop.
To remove grease and grease stains from your concrete tabletop, there are two solutions. Either you call your mom, or you use Lithofin MN Power-Clean. This product is available in our care kit for concrete furniture. We’ve used this product in lots of different situations, and it’s very effective. Here’s what to do: Depending on how deep the stain is, either apply the product pure or diluted in five parts water (it might be necessary to scrub as you apply). Wait 10 to 20 minutes. Then scrub with water and rinse until the water runs clear.
If the stain is not all the way gone, repeat the process. If after multiple attempts the stain is still visible, then the easiest thing to do would be to learn to live with it. Why not make more stains around it, giving your furniture a patina that’s all its own, like one of those old zinc bar tops that keeps the memory of every customer that ever cozied up to it?
If this is not the answer you’re looking for, Lithofin offers a product with the exotic name of LÖSEFIX. We haven’t had the chance to use it ourselves, but we hear that it can do a number on stubborn stains.
Concrete is pretty solid, but if you hit it with a hammer, it’s going to crack. Once again, you can learn to live with this kind of wear and tear. But if big cracks bother you, you can fix your concrete furniture. The best thing to do is to use fast-drying cement to fill in the crack.
Here’s the process for repairing a concrete cabinet:
Apply quick-setting cement to fill in the missing piece of concrete.
Once dry, sand the spot down, first with medium-grit sandpaper (120) then with something finer (180 or more), and there you go. Nothing miraculous. The repair will be visible, and once again, you’ll have to learn to live with the mistakes of the past. Don’t hesitate to protect your furniture anew, especially the repaired parts, with a water- and oil-repellent solution like Lithofin’s Fleckstop W, available in our cleaning and caring kit for concrete furniture.