Removal of hard water stains on colored concrete

by Carol Pavlides
(New Mexic o)

Q. I Have a fountain and it is three tiers - each tier ledge is colored concrete - due to the hard water in our region it has begun to show calcification deposits - what is the best way to remove these and what type of sealer would you recommend. The fountain was made and installed by a fountain building company, however, at this point they have no answers. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thank you

A. Here are 2 methods you can try.

#1. Things You'll Need:

* Trisodium phosphate (TSP), Garden hose, Adjustable nozzle, Scrub brush with handle, Rubber gloves, Goggles


Spray down and scrub the fountain made of concrete with your hose. Use the highest pressure available to loosen and remove all dirt.

Put on rubber gloves and goggles. TSP is harmful to the skin and eyes. Mix a solution of 1/4 cup TSP for every gallon of warm water you are using.

Dip your scrub brush into the TSP solution. Begin to scrub the surface of your concrete fountain where you have the hard water stains. Allow the TSP solution to sit for at least five minutes, but do not let it dry out. Keep wetting it if necessary.

Spray down your cleaned concrete fountain. If the hard water stains still remain, repeat the scrubbing process. It may take 2 or more times.

After the hard water stains have been removed, let the concrete dry for 24 to 48 hrs and apply a penetrating sealer to the concrete.

Radonseal makes a good penetrating sealer that would work well for your fountain.

Method # 2

If you don't want to use a cleaning solution like TSP, you can try substituting white vinegar or lemon juice. Let it sit on the hard water stain for 15 to 20 minutes then scrub and rinse it off.

It will probably take more than 1 time to completely remove all the hard water stains on the concrete.

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