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A Comprehensive Guide to Painting a Concrete Driveway

A brick and stone house with black-trimmed windows is pictured. There is a green lawn surrounding the driveway and a blue sky in the background.


A driveway is more than just a functional pathway to your home. With the right touch, it can also boost curb appeal and reflect your aesthetic. Painting your concrete driveway is an effective and affordable way to achieve this transformation. This guide will explore how to select the best paint for concrete driveways and the essential steps for a lasting finish.

Preparing the Concrete Surface

Before any paint touches your driveway, thorough preparation is critical.

Thoroughly Clean the Driveway to Remove Dirt, Oil and Stains

Over time, driveways accumulate dirt, oil and other stains, which can hinder the paint’s adhesion. Start with a high-pressure wash and consider using specialized cleaners for stubborn stains.

Repair Cracks and Fill in Potholes or Damaged Areas

DRYLOK® Masonry Crack Filler is designed specifically for the unique challenges presented by masonry surfaces. Here’s why you should choose it:

  • Superior Adhesion: DRYLOK Masonry Crack Filler binds firmly to concrete, brick, stucco and more to help ensure that cracks stay sealed after being filled.

  • Durable Performance: Crafted to withstand weather extremes, it ensures that repaired areas remain intact through varying conditions, to help prevent further damage.

  • Easy Application: Its user-friendly consistency allows for a smooth application, which makes DIY repairs straightforward and hassle-free.

  • Paintable Surface: Once dried, the filler can be easily painted over, so that you can seamlessly blend the repaired area with its surroundings.

  • Safe for Indoor and Outdoor Use: With low odors and minimal VOCs, it’s safe to use in both interior and exterior spaces.

Sand or Etch the Surface to Ensure Proper Adhesion of the Paint

DRYLOK Etch is an exemplary choice when preparing a driveway for painting. It effectively treats concrete surfaces to create an ideal profile for painting to help ensure superior adhesion of the paint. By replacing the traditional muriatic acid, DRYLOK Etch is a safer and environmentally friendly option that cleans and brightens concrete, stone and masonry.

Moreover, its ability to remove efflorescence salts, as well as reduce the risk of paint peeling, showcases its reliability. Overall, utilizing DRYLOK Etch paves the way for a paint job that not only looks professionally done but also stands the test of time.

Selecting the Right Concrete Paint

Different Types of Concrete Paints — Acrylic, Epoxy and Latex-Based

Understanding paint varieties can guide you to the right product. Epoxy paints, for instance, are durable and resist chemicals, which makes them a top pick for driveways.

Factors to Consider When Choosing Paint Colors and Finishes

Reflect on the color palette of your home. Lighter shades might conceal stains better, but darker tones can provide a sleek appearance. Moreover, a semi-gloss finish can give the surface a subtle shine.

Use Weather-Resistant and UV-resistant Paints for Longevity

Exposure to harsh weather and the sun’s UV rays can deteriorate paint over time. Ensure longevity by selecting UV and weather-resistant paints.

Best Concrete Paint Option

This uniquely formulated paint combines the durability of epoxy with the ease of application associated with latex paint. The result is a hardy, resistant coating that withstands the wear and tear typical of driveways. It provides a clean, showroom-quality finish that enhances the curb appeal of your home.

  • DRYLOK E1 paint has a built-in UV blocker and is resistant to hot tire pick-up, two crucial elements for driveway paint exposed to extreme weather conditions and constant vehicular movement. The UV resistance ensures the color stays vibrant and doesn’t fade over time due to sunlight exposure. The tire pick-up resistance means it won’t peel or blister even under the stress of hot car tires.

  • The paint is also low-odor and environmentally friendly, which makes it a safe option for use around pets and kids. Its easy, one-coat application saves both time and resources, which makes it an efficient and economical choice for homeowners.

  • Consider adding a non-skid texture additive for a safer finish.

Gathering Tools: The Essentials for Painting a Concrete Driveway

Equipping yourself with quality tools ensures smoother application. Consider paint brushes for edging, rollers for broad areas or paint sprayers for faster application.

Painting a Concrete Driveway

Choose the Right Time and Weather Conditions

Applying DRYLOK E1 concrete paint requires specific conditions to ensure optimal adhesion and durability. 


For best outcomes, apply within a temperature range of 50 – 80°F (10 – 27°C). Extreme temperature conditions can potentially impact the paint’s ability to cure and dry effectively.


Low to moderate humidity is preferred. Excessive moisture in the air can impact the drying process and potentially affect the finish.


It is recommended to avoid exposing the paint to direct sunlight during application. Overcast conditions are preferable, as direct sunlight can lead to excessive surface heat or premature drying of the paint.


Ensure that there’s no rain forecast for at least 24 hours after application. Rain or heavy dew can wash away the paint or leave marks on the finish.

Use a Roller or Paint Sprayer

Rollers offer precision while sprayers provide speed. The choice depends on your comfort and the driveway’s size.

Apply Multiple Coats for a Consistent and Vibrant Finish

For a striking and even finish, two coats of paint are recommended. After the first coat of DRYLOK E1 paint is applied, allow it to dry for a minimum of four hours or until it is completely dry to the touch. Remember, drying times may vary based on weather and humidity levels.

Once the first coat is fully dry, apply a second coat. The second coat should be applied in a cross direction to the first coat to achieve color uniformity.

Add Decorative Elements (Optional)

Stencil Patterns or Designs on the Driveway

This can add a personal touch or mimic pricier materials like brick or tile.

Create Borders or Edging for a Polished Look

Borders can define the driveway and add visual interest.

Incorporate Faux Finishes or Textures for a Unique Appearance

This decorative method can mimic the appearance of materials such as stone, marble, wood or brick for a cost-effective alternative to replacing the entire driveway. To achieve this, specialized paints or stains coupled with unique application techniques are employed.

Remember, the key to successful faux finishing is to take your time during application and allow each layer to dry before applying the next. It’s also advisable to practice your technique on a small, inconspicuous area first to ensure that you’re satisfied with the result before applying it to the entire driveway.

Drying and Curing

After painting, allow 24 to 48 hours of drying time before light use and up to a week for vehicular traffic.

Maintaining a Painted Concrete Driveway

This white home features a light-colored driveway. There is a blue sky in the background with white clouds.

Regular Cleaning and Maintenance to Preserve the Paint’s Appearance

Regularly sweeping and washing prevents grime accumulation.

Touch up any Chipped or Faded Areas as Needed

Even with the best paint, occasional touch-ups keep the driveway looking fresh.

Reapply Sealer Periodically for Added Protection

Adding a urethane sealer over your painted concrete driveway is an extra step, but one that can significantly extend the life of your paint job. A good sealer will provide an extra layer of protection against harsh weather, UV rays, stains and abrasion. Furthermore, it can enhance the color of the paint and add a glossy sheen. Depending on the traffic and the harshness of the weather, reapplication of the sealer should be done every 2 to 3 years. 

Choose the Best Concrete Paint for Concrete Driveways with DRYLOK

DRYLOK will help you transform your concrete driveway with the best paint on the market. DRYLOK E1 Latex 1‑Part Epoxy Concrete Floor Paint provides unparalleled resistance, easy application and a stunning finish that boosts your home’s curb appeal. 

We also carry urethane sealers to make sure your driveway stays protected. Make your driveway more than a pathway to your garage — make it a statement. Contact us today to find a retail location near you!