Fox Residence

 New Concrete Driveway Retaining Wall Before Installing Patterned Cement Overlay (Shown On Sample Board)
 Discoloration Of Concrete Driveway Retaining Wall Before Installation Of Patterned Cement Overlay

This project is a stenciled cement overlay of a residential driveway concrete retaining wall in upscale Elmhurst, Illinois.  The pattern was chosen from the Artcrete Company stencil collection to complement the home's limestone block foundation.  Above, you can see the condition of the wall prior to the project, and the sample board we prepared for the customer.

 Concrete Driveway Retaining Wall After Acid Etching And Pressure Washing
 Surface Preparation And Repair Of Concrete Driveway Retaining Wall

The next two photos show the beginning of our concrete surface preparation.  Above left, the retaining wall was pressure washed and then acid-etched, rinsed and neutralized.  Above right, you can see the blue, rust-inhibitive primer we applied to the remaining segments of the metal form ties after chiseling out the concrete and cutting them back with a grinder.

 Concrete Driveway Retaining Wall After Patching Form Tie Holes With Cement
 Concrete Driveway Retaining Wall With White Cement Overlay Base Coat

Next, we patched the form tie holes (above left) and sprayed on a base coat of cement overlay with a hopper gun (above right to level the surface and provide the grout color of the pattern.  We color-matched the overlay as close as possible to the existing limestone block (right side of photos) in the home's foundation.

 Cement Overlay Stencil Pattern Template Applied To Concrete Driveway Retaining Wall
 Concrete Driveway Retaining Wall Showing Cement Overlay Sprayed Over Stencil Design Template

With the base coat now in place, we next applied the (brown) cardboard stencil template to the wall (above left) using a clear spray adhesive and then sprayed more cement over the stencil (above right) to permanently impart the design pattern on the driveway retaining wall.  We used red rosin paper to protect the driveway from cement overspray.

 Limestone Block Pattern Cement Overlay of Driveway Concrete Retaining Wall With Invisible, Water- And Dirt-Repellent Sealer
 Limestone Block Pattern Cement Overlay of Driveway Concrete Retaining Wall With Invisible, Water- And Dirt-Repellent Sealer (Closeup)

After the cement dried for about eight hours, we carefully pulled the cardboard stencil off of the wall, and sealed the overlay with an invisible, "natural-look", solvent-based silane sealer from Prosoco to protect it from water, oil, dirt and other contaminants.  The small black circles in the wall are where decorative lighting will be installed.

 Newly Installed Concrete Driveway Retaining Wall Before Cement Overlay
 Newly Installed, Patterned Cement Overlay of Existing Concrete Driveway Retaining Wall

Above is another before and after view of the retaining wall from the other side of the driveway.  It's hard to tell the finished project (above right) wasn't built directly from the ground up.

 Both Sides Of Concrete Driveway Retaining Wall Before Cement Overlay
 Both Sides Of Concrete Driveway Retaining Wall After Installation Of Patterned Cement Overlay

The next two photos (above) show before and after, looking down the driveway from the street.  The last two photos (below) show final views of other sections of the retaining wall, including a stairway leading to the side door of the home.

 Long Driveway Concrete Retaining Wall With Patterned Cement Overlay
 Patterned Cement Overlay Of Concrete Driveway Retaining Wall Stairwell