Exposed aggregate is a type of concrete finish that combines cement and stones or pebbles, to deliver a textured, natural stone aesthetic. The result is a durable, non-slip surface that is aesthetically sought after. Exposed aggregate is typically used for driveways and pathways, it can also be used for landscaping and pool surrounds. It can be placed anywhere in your yard and is fairly easy to maintain. Exposed aggregate concrete is a great way to add curb appeal to a home or business. This article explores exposed aggregate and looks at things you need to consider when choosing this type of concrete finish. 

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What is exposed aggregate?

Aggregates are granular materials used in concrete. They include sand, gravel, and rock. These materials are a crucial ingredient for creating concrete and gives concrete its strength and durability. They are used along with water and cement to create the final mixture. In this process, the aggregate becomes an important part of the concrete. This method usually utilises a concrete base with exposed top later—a versatile construction option that homeowners can customise according to the preference and needs of the homeowner and the use of the concrete taken into consideration.

Why is exposed aggregate a popular choice?

Exposed aggregate is an attractive and durable finish for concrete areas. It adds texture and aesthetic appeal to your concrete. It is an ideal choice for high traffic areas and can even hide imperfections over time due to the natural combination of texture and shades that hide imperfections compared to a standard concreted area. 

In addition, exposed aggregate can be customised to alleviate the risk of slipping, protecting you and your loved ones, which is especially important around a pool area. You can choose the look and texture you want for your property. You can even customise the colour of your concrete to create a unique look. This material is versatile and goes well with virtually any design or colour scheme. It can also blend well with natural stone. It exudes uniqueness that is very appealing to the eye. In comparison, stamped concrete is not as aesthetically pleasing as exposed aggregate, although it can mimic brick and paver surfaces and add texture. 

Common concreted areas where exposed aggregate is used

Exposure aggregate is commonly used for all kinds of areas around a property. Some of the most popular areas that we see exposed aggregate include concrete driveways and pool surrounds, but it is also a beautiful option for interior flooring when polished, and pathways around the house as well as entrance ways. In areas that have a lot of foot traffic, this finish is popular because of the added texture which prevents slipping.

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Things to consider with exposed aggregate

The cost of exposed aggregate concrete is higher than that of standard concrete. Due to the added cost of materials and labour, exposed aggregate concrete can cost on average between $110-$150 square metre. The cost depends on the type of aggregates used and the strength of the concrete.

Exposed aggregate needs higher maintenance requirements due to its increased texture on the surface, where dirt and grime adhere when not regularly cleaned properly. A quality sealant helps prevent unsightly cracks and uneven surfaces caused by water, dirt, and stains. A power washer and commercial degreaser helps in combating harder to remove stains such as oil spills. While exposed aggregate is a very durable material and finish, it is more vulnerable to requiring surface repairs due to the textured surface compared to standard concrete. 

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So, should you get exposed aggregate for your project?

If you’re looking for a non-slip surface or want an aesthetically pleasing surface, exposed aggregate can be an excellent choice. It also looks great—from pathways to pool decks—and is highly durable. Whether you’re building a pool deck, landscaping your garden, or renovating your driveway, exposed aggregate can improve the look of your property. It is durable and has a high load capacity. It also ensures a non-slip surface. Our team regularly works with exposed aggregate in homes and commercial properties in Werribee and surrounding areas. Book your onsite quote to discuss your project, with an experienced Werribee concreter.

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