Ashburn, VA

How Much Does It Cost To Install Stamped Concrete?
$5 – $12 per square foot

The average cost for a stamped concrete is $5 to $12 per square foot, not including the concrete slab which costs $2 – $7 per square foot. Most homeowners spend a total of between $3,751 – $8,540 for stamped concrete patio. Get free estimates from concrete pros near you.

How Much Does Stamped Concrete Cost?

Author: Daniel W.
Millions of people ask HomeGuide for cost estimates every year. We track the estimates they get from local companies, then we share those prices with you.

What is stamped concrete?

Concrete stamping is when a continuous block of concrete is colored and then imprinted with a polyurethane “concrete stamp” pattern. The ridges in the stamp, once pressed into the freshly poured and smoothed concrete and then removed, leave the look of the material the client wants the patio to mimic, be that slate, brick, flagstone, or natural stone. Stamping concrete is much more affordable than hiring a stonemason.

This pricing guide covers:

Stamped Concrete Cost

Stamped concrete can range anywhere between $2 to $18 per square foot with most homeowners spending between $5 to $12 per square foot. In addition to the concrete slab which costs $2 – $7 per square foot, there are different levels of stamping work and additional costs required:

Stamped Concrete Level Average Costs
One color with accents $2 – $5 per square foot
Basic stamping plus one color $6 – $7 per square foot
Textured with one color and a different border $8 – $12 per square foot
Contrasts of two or more colors and patterns $12 – $18 per square foot
Hand-applied chemical stain accents $18+ per square foot

Add the prices above to the base cost for a concrete patio. For example, a one color concrete patio with accents will be $4 – $12 installed.

Stamped Concrete Cost

For an average 12' by 14' concrete patio, you can expect to pay $2,500 for just to slab. By adding concrete stamping to your patio this price goes up, where most homeowners spend between $3,751 – $8,540 total.

Concrete Patio Type Average Cost
Concrete Slab $1,400 - $4,300
Concrete Slab with Stamping $3,751 – $8,540

Stamped Concrete Driveway Cost

The average concrete driveway cost is between $3,750 – $7,000 for a 2-car driveway. That is just for the concrete slab. To add stamping to a 600 square foot driveway, you can expect to pay an extra $3,000 to $7,200 which will double the cost of your driveway.

The total cost of a 600 square foot stamped driveway will cost you between $6,750 and $14,200.

Stamped Concrete vs Pavers Cost

Brick pavers cost between $3 – $15 per square foot on average, which is around $0.50 cents per brick. Whereas, stamped concrete can range anywhere between $4 to $25 installed. Pavers come in many different shapes and colors which will also influence the cost:

  • Red Pavers: $0.50 - $3 per brick
  • Gray Pavers: $0.50 - $6 per brick
  • Dry Laid Pavers: $15 per square foot
  • Clay Pavers: $5 to $10 per square foot

Concrete Cost Vs Other Materials

Compared to other materials you could use for your patio, concrete is the most cost friendly. It is one of the longest-lasting choices too, lasting for up to fifty years. If you live in a hotter climate, you’ll also appreciate its inability to absorb and hold heat well. The following table details some average costs for plain patios, according to Craftsman’s National Estimator:

Material Cost Per Sqft. Installed
Concrete $2 – $7
Brick $7 – $8
Limestone $13 – $20
Flagstone $13 – $30
Rubber pavers $16 – $48
Granite $18 – $22
Marble $23 – $78
Sandstone $34 – $43

Popular Stamped Concrete Designs

You can imitate just about any type of stone thanks to the abundance of concrete color, patterns, and textures available.

Ashlar

Some of the most popular patterns are called ashlar that hail from the twelfth century, to include New England slate, old granite, Roman slate, travertine, and quarry stone. Other popular choices are the wood plank and herringbone brick looks.

Stamped Concrete Ashlar

Medallion

Medallion stamps with five-point stars, or compasses, pressed into another color of concrete are hugely popular. If you’re feeling adventurous, you can even make your own concrete stamping mat! Medallion stamps are usually 3’–5’ wide, and in some states on particular design can be very popular, like the Texas star in Texas. Once removed, the medallion imprint is hand painted with the colors of choice.

Stamped Concrete Medallion

Stamp roller

These 4”–6” -pushed rollers are a great way to imprint a border or edge quickly. Some come with a liquid release option that spray a color release on the roller as it works the design into the concrete. Texture rollers must be used before stamping mats when the concrete is softer because of the limited force applied.

Stamped Concrete Roller Patterns

Stamped Concrete Steps

Some patios with concrete steps leading off them can also be imprinted/stamped with what’s called edge or step liners. These give the impression of cut stone on the vertical fall of each step.

Stamped Concrete Step Liners

Stamped Concrete Installation

Color can be added into the concrete mix onsite. Heavy pavers or stones don’t need to be lifted in. Once the concrete is poured or pumped, the stamping only takes a day to mark the concrete and another day once set, to hammer and patch any chips or cracks. Once dry, it’s power washed and (usually) sealed. Compare this to natural stone, which must be installed stone by stone and can take many days to get right.

Concrete Patio Painted or coated

When trying to decide which type of design work to move forward with, talk to contractors with plenty of experience in concrete pouring and design for recommendations based on the layout of your yard.

Stamped Concrete Sealing Costs

It’s highly recommended that you seal your concrete patio if you plan on having animals on it or you like to eat out there because concrete is porous and can soak up stains. Sealer will also protect your patio from wear and tear and enrich the color in the stamped concrete.

Virgin or pure acrylic sealer won’t yellow under UV rays, but epoxies will. An acrylic spray-on cure and seal will cost approx. $0.53/per square foot.

Solvent-based sealers are more popular because they will highlight the concrete’s colors better, are breathable, won’t yellow, aren’t slippery, and provide invisible protection. High-gloss sealers are not recommended because they can be slippery and block in the moisture, which can cause fracturing, white hazing, or fogging.

After making sure the patio surface is clean and dry, the sealer is applied in thin coats (with a roller or sprayer, based on instructions) so as to allow the concrete to expand and allow moisture to escape. Take care to ensure the sealer is worked into the stamp pattern depressions but don’t apply it too thickly or it will puddle. It’s only designed to go on thinly.

The seal should last for 1–3 years.

Stamped Concrete Maintenance Cost

Depending on your local climate and the amount of wear and tear on your patio, you’ll only need to power wash it occasionally and reseal it every few years. Another plus is that no weeds will grow up through the solid concrete slab.

According to our concrete patio cost guide, concrete can crack if the sub base is poorly prepared, the concrete is of poor quality or badly mixed, or the patio undergoes severe thaw-refreeze weather.

  • Sub base – additives and aggregate can be pumped beneath the slab to fill sinking spots and prop the concrete back up.
  • Cracks – The patio can be resurfaced with overlay. The surface is scraped and a new concrete layer applied. Costs $1–$3/per square foot.
    • Individual cracks can be filled for about $300
    • The patio can be stained and cut to make the cracks look like part of the design.

Stamped Concrete Considerations

Overlay

If the existing concrete patio is in good shape and has a good underlay in place, you can overlay it with ¼” or more of concrete and then stamp. It costs a lot less than a full slab at $1–$3/per square foot.

These overlays are much thinner than a new concrete slab, so care must be taken in preparing the existing slab—make sure all cracks and holes are filled. If adding an overlay and the existing slab is not level, you’ll need to pump in some soil and aggregate to level it off before any overlay is added.

Concrete Patio Engraved brick

Also, because the new layer of concrete is so thin, it will dry quickly and the stamping mats must be placed and moved quickly or they’ll get stuck in the drying concrete.

Stamping mats

Some mats are rigid and have handles on them while others are a bit more flexible. The latter are useful for working with slopes. The third kind are thinner and even more flexible, and great for edging work on the patio. Your contractor should have enough mats on hand to complete one row of stamping at a time, and the mats should fit together tightly. Bluestone texturing skin can be placed on the concrete first—to give the concrete a rugged, stone look with frayed edges—followed by the stamp design of choice.

Coloring Stamped Concrete

The best colored stamped patios are those that blend in with the earthtones/outdoor colors around it and the brickwork of the home. Layering colors can make the stamping work look a lot more like natural stone.

Concrete Patio colored Chemical acid stain concrete

  • One color can be mixed into the concrete before it’s even poured, which is one way of giving it the color of the stone you want it to imitate.
  • Pigments are added in the color hardener or using acid-based chemical stains or tinted liquid release agents. Dry shake color hardeners only color the top layer of concrete in select parts of the patio slab.
  • For more colors, try layering concrete dyes or water-based acrylic stains.

Disadvantages of Stamped Concrete

  1. While stamped concrete looks very close to real stone, no one would ever be fooled into thinking it’s the real thing.
  2. The concrete base and the quality of the concrete will be the deciding factors in if and when the concrete cracks. Relief joints can be sawn into the slab, which will help, but they might upset the natural aesthetic of the slab.
  3. It can be difficult to match the color of patches to the original color that has now faded naturally.
  4. Colors can fade over time.
  5. It can be slippery if a sealer isn’t used.
  6. Patio furniture and/or moving a heavy grill can scratch the surface.
  7. If the entire slab sinks and cracks beyond repair, a brand-new patio slab must be installed.
For an in-depth study of all the points to be considered regarding your concrete patio, read our guide Concrete Patio Cost.

Stamped Concrete Process

Once the subgrade has been laid and compacted and the concrete has been poured and smoothed over, and hardened a bit, it’s time to stamp. There’s only a short window of time to complete the job before the concrete sets, so expect a team of at least three workers to compete the job.

  1. Coat the slab — Apply the color hardener. This is thrown on by hand and left to harden for about 10 minutes to absorb any water. Then apply a second layer of hardener.
  2. Cover the entire slab with release powder or liquid. These will give your concrete color contrasts and stop the mats from sticking.
  3. Coat the polyurethane stamping mats with release powder. Some mats will add texture while others will have the pattern on them.
  4. Make sure the concrete is ready — if your fingers leave a clean ¼” imprint in a few places, it’s ready.
  5. Begin stamping — Use the texture mats first and pre-texture around the edges of the slab.
  6. Mats are strategically placed next to each other leaving no spaces, and pressed on with the hands or feet. Concrete stamp tampers are even better than hands and feet, as they push the stamp into the concrete more evenly. Mats are usually marked so you can avoid any guessing work re their placement.
  7. Those mats are then lifted and fitted in place to form the next row. Add more release powder to the stamps if they start to stick.
  8. The pattern is repeated up to the edges of the patio and next to the house, with one person knelling on each row of mats before it’s moved to make sure the grout joints are clear and deep enough.
  9. Edge and tidy — All edges mats won’t fit into are made to imitate the same pattern with a chisel and roller up to the edges.
  10. Chisels and rollers are used to make sure stamping lines/grout lines are clearly imprinted.
  11. Rinse and cure — Wash off excess release powder the next day.
  12. Have a curing phase of 3–4 days.
  13. Seal either that day or wait a few weeks for the concrete to cure. The instructions on the sealer should indicate the best way to go.
  14. Contraction joints — Cut contraction joints into the slab to allow for expansion and contraction of the concrete. A diamond bladed saw is usually used to do this.

Choosing your stamped concrete patio contractor

When narrowing down all the contractors you look through to come to a final three, keep in mind the need for them to fit as many of the following criteria as possible:

  • Many years of experience pouring and stamping concrete slab
  • Great reviews on HomeGuide
  • An A or A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau
  • Insured, licensed, bonded
  • A warranty on both the concrete and labor
  • A great portfolio of previous work
  • Will include all setup and cleanup in the bid
  • Can give an exact starting and finishing date
JW's Precision Lawn Care & Landscaping in McDonough, GA, says, “Ask the contractor for references. Once you receive those references, call and speak to them and ask questions such as - Did he meet your timeline and budget? Was he open to changes before during or after the project? Was he honest and were his employees honest?”

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