Smooth Concrete

A driveway being painted

How to Paint a Concrete Driveway

A driveway being painted

We often find that the art of painting a concrete driveway isn’t initially considered when homeowners think about improving their property. Nevertheless, this practical and visually pleasing upgrade can significantly boost the curb appeal of a residence while concurrently providing an extra layer of safeguarding to the driveway surface.

As a task that involves precision and preparation, it includes thorough surface cleaning, priming, and the use of the appropriate paint, topped off with a sealer for enhanced durability.

In this blog post, we will guide you through the necessary steps, tools, and techniques required to triumphantly carry out this project and amplify the external charm of your property.

Preparing the Concrete Driveway Surface

Before we dive into the painting process, it’s essential to thoroughly cleanse the concrete driveway surface of any dirt, oil, or stains that could jeopardize the overall finish. This stage of preparation is fundamental in our Melbourne concreting projects, and we ensure its effective implementation.

We utilise a pressure washer, a tool proven to be highly effective in removing stubborn dirt, grime, and unwanted stains. This step is essential as it directly impacts the paint’s adhesion, influencing the final finish of your concrete driveway.

After we’ve achieved a thoroughly clean concrete surface, our attention turns to identifying and repairing any visible cracks, potholes, or damaged areas on the driveway. In our pursuit of delivering a smooth and uniform finish, we consider this step crucial. Depending on the severity of the damage, we have various repair methods at our disposal. These may include filling the area with a concrete patching compound or sealing it with an appropriate sealant.

Selecting the Right Concrete Paint

An impeccable concrete driveway paint job pivots on choosing the right paint. This involves considering not only its durability and aesthetic appeal, but also its compatibility with the concrete conditions and potential exposure to Melbourne’s weather elements.

Choosing the right concrete paint is a process that involves multiple factors. First and foremost, we recommend evaluating the condition of the concrete. If the surface has been previously painted, it may necessitate a different type of paint compared to a bare concrete surface. We can’t stress enough the importance of checking the manufacturer’s instructions; some paints might require a primer specifically designed for concrete surfaces to ensure optimal adhesion.

Moreover, it’s valuable to investigate if a sealer topcoat is required based on the paint product you’ve chosen. This additional layer can significantly enhance the paint’s longevity and wear resistance, ensuring your driveway remains in top-notch condition.

We also recommend factoring in durability, colour options, and compatibility with older concrete. We encourage you to opt for a paint finish that complements your house for the best aesthetic results. After all, a well-painted driveway can significantly enhance your property’s curb appeal.

Gathering Essential Painting Tools

To achieve a professional and seamless paint job, it’s crucial to gather essential painting tools. These include a gurney, pressure washer, acid etch, primer, paint, large roller on a pole, tray, and brush for edges.

The gurney and pressure washer are instrumental in cleaning your driveway thoroughly before the painting process begins. The acid etch plays a significant role in opening the pores of the concrete surface, allowing the paint to adhere correctly.

Our experts at Smooth Concrete recommend using a high-quality primer as it prepares your concrete driveway surface for the paint, boosting its longevity. Consider using paint sprayers for a more uniform application, especially on larger driveways – a service we excel at, thanks to our expertise and state-of-the-art equipment.

A large roller on a pole is another tool we use to apply the paint evenly over a large area. Our professional painters also make use of a tray to hold the paint while working, and a brush comes in handy for painting the edges and corners of your driveway where the roller cannot reach.

Painting Your Concrete Driveway

Painting your concrete driveway consists of three crucial stages: preparing the driveway, selecting the right paint, and the actual application of the paint.

Let’s delve into the details of these stages for a comprehensive understanding of how to achieve a beautifully painted concrete driveway.

Preparing the Driveway

Before applying any paint, it’s crucial to thoroughly clean the concrete driveway. This can be achieved using a gurney or pressure washer. This crucial step in the preparation process eliminates debris, dirt and any loose paint, ensuring a clean surface for the new paint to adhere to.

To correctly prepare your driveway, our team at Smooth Concrete recommends following these steps:

  1. Thoroughly clean the driveway, taking particular care on the edges. This might involve using a scrub brush to remove stubborn dirt or moss.
  2. Carry out a close inspection of the concrete for any cracks or damage. If your driveway has been painted previously, it’s also important to assess the condition of the existing paint.
  3. Apply a primer specifically designed for concrete surfaces. This additional preparation step aids in creating a base for the paint, ensuring the longevity of the results.

Choosing the Right Paint

It’s vital to choose the right paint to ensure both longevity and a visually pleasing finish. We recommend a primer specifically tailored for untreated concrete surfaces to improve paint adhesion, and depending on the type of paint you choose, a sealer topcoat might be required.

For optimal results, you might want to consider using a sealer instead of regular pavement paint. In terms of colour selection, we suggest going for a masonry paint in a neutral tone like black or grey. This choice will not only match your home seamlessly but will also contribute to the lifespan of your driveway.

Lastly, we advise applying two coats of paint, following the manufacturer’s guidelines and leaving sufficient drying time between the layers.

Actual Painting Process

Here are the key steps of the painting process:

  1. First coat application: Our process begins with the application of the first coat of paint. This step is carried out meticulously across the entire driveway. We view this coat as an essential primer, setting the stage for the second coat and enhancing its ability to adhere to the concrete.
  2. Second coat application: Upon complete drying of the first coat, our team at Smooth Concrete proceeds with the application of the second coat. This layer introduces the colour and finish you’ve chosen. We apply this coat with the same level of care and precision as the first to ensure a flawless result.
  3. Final inspection: Following the drying of the second coat, we conduct a thorough inspection of the entire driveway. This is to guarantee complete coverage and ensure any missed spots are promptly touched up, achieving a uniform look and finish that our Melbourne clients have come to expect from Smooth Concrete.

Adding Decorative Elements

You can elevate the aesthetic appeal of a concrete driveway by adding decorative elements. These elements, such as stencils, patterns, or borders, are added using specialised concrete paint. This process can transform a simple concrete driveway into a visually captivating masterpiece.

The first step in our process of adding decorative elements involves understanding your vision and choosing a design that complements the overall look of your home. You can create patterns with stencils or freehand designs using a variety of colours and textures.

Once you’ve finalised the design, you can use the specialised concrete paint to bring it to life. We want you to remember that this process can be as straightforward or as intricate as you prefer. Whether it’s a simple border or a detailed mural, the choice is always yours!

After the decorative elements have been added and dried, apply a clear sealer to protect and preserve the design from wear and tear. This step is crucial in ensuring the longevity of your investment.

Maintaining Your Painted Driveway

It’s important to regularly maintain your driveway to ensure its durability and longevity. By maintaining your painted driveway, you can not only preserve its aesthetic appeal but also extend the life of the paint job.

There are three key steps to keep your driveway looking fresh and vibrant:

  1. Cleaning: At Smooth Concrete, we recommend that you regularly sweep and wash your driveway to prevent the build-up of grime. Use a mild detergent and water for routine cleaning, and make sure to promptly remove any oil stains that may appear. Remember to avoid harsh chemicals that can potentially damage the paint.
  2. Touch-ups: Over the passage of time, you might notice chipped or faded areas on your driveway. When these appear, lightly sand these spots and apply touch-up paint. We always advise allowing sufficient drying time before using the driveway again.
  3. Sealing: Every 2-3 years, it is beneficial to reapply a concrete sealer for added protection. This not only enhances the colour but also adds a glossy sheen. Here at Smooth Concrete, we recommend choosing a high-quality sealer specifically designed for concrete surfaces to ensure maximum durability.

Through regular maintenance, you can enjoy the beauty and longevity of your painted driveway.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Painting a Concrete Driveway a Good Idea?

Painting your driveway will enhance the aesthetics of your driveway considerably. However, we also caution our clients about potential durability issues. Painted surfaces might necessitate a higher degree of maintenance. Depending on Melbourne’s weather conditions and general wear and tear, regular repainting could become a requirement.

What Is the Best Paint for Concrete Driveways?

The best paint for concrete driveways should primarily focus on durability factors such as weather resistance. When choosing the colour, it’s essential to coordinate with your home’s exterior. Plus, local climate considerations, like temperature extremes typical in Melbourne, should heavily influence your choice of paint.

How Do You Prepare an Old Concrete Driveway for Painting?

To prepare an old concrete driveway for painting, you should thoroughly clean the surface by eliminating any debris and employing a pressure washer if needed. The next crucial step is to carry out any necessary crack repair and smoothing of the surface. Lastly, apply a primer, which is paramount to ensure enhanced paint adhesion.

What Kind of Paint Will Stick to Concrete?

Using concrete primers on concrete surfaces will help to boost paint adhesion. This guarantees long-lasting durability, even against Melbourne’s unpredictable weather conditions. For the best results and an extended lifespan, we suggest using specialised paints designed specifically for concrete or masonry surfaces due to their superior sticking capability.


A painted driveway can give your property a new lease on life. However, it’s important to note that painting your driveway will not last as long as a properly coloured-through concrete driveway.

If you would like to get a quote on a coloured concrete driveway, speak to us now by calling 0403 292 005 or email