How to Remove Paint From Concrete Without Chemicals

How to Remove Paint From Concrete Without Chemicals

If you do a quick little search on Google for “how to remove paint from concrete,” almost everyone’s first recommendation points at the chemical stripper method. Sadly, some chemicals are not good for human health.

Well, For those of us who want to learn how to remove paint from concrete without chemicals, you are on the right page!

I’m going to share with you a simple but effective technique you can use to strip just about any paint, even if it’s an oil-based formula.

Why Removing Paint With Chemicals Is Dangerous

Why Removing Paint With Chemicals Is Dangerous

Because it is dangerous!

According to Nap report:

A 66-year-old man with no prior history of heart disease was admitted to the coronary care unit with severe, crushing retrosternal pain after he had applied a commercial liquid gel paint and varnish remover to part of a large wooden chest of drawers.

Could you believe that it led to cardiogenic shock, dysrhythmia, and heart failure? Although the patient survived.

But at the third attempt to completing the paint stripping operation after he had gotten home, he experienced chest pain, collapsed, and died.

Liquid paint and varnish removers may be the Drake, Jazzy, and Beyoncé in the industry, but they are among the most toxic products used in homes and workshops.

And, you could be signing you and your family’s death warrant bringing them home.

Because they are solvent concentrations (like methylene chloride), they can cripple your respiratory tract, nervous system, and internal organs after prolonged exposure.

And from what has gathered over the years as a professional painter, even the ones marketed as being SAFE do contain an active ingredient that is quite hazardous.

Even if you’re lucky enough to find the one that is 100% safe, it won’t work as effectively as the toxic ones.

Therefore if your goal was to effectively strip paint without exposing yourself to fumes, using chemicals will forfeit that purpose one way or the other.

Using other alternatives is, however, your only shot.

But something is dissatisfying about not doing it the chemical way – I really can’t place my finger on it though.

But I do feel it is the so-good-to-be-true hypes and promising adverts from these products that get us hooked, deviating our attention from other solutions even if we have had dozen of bitter experiences or know they are for sure toxic.

Don’t you think it is high time you did things differently?

Read Also: Best Paint Stripping Heat Guns

How to Remove Paint From Concrete Without Chemicals [The Soda Blasting Method]

How to Remove Paint From Concrete Without Chemicals

There are tons of preferable alternatives to chemical strippers, but we chose soda blasting because it is the safest and most effective method among all others.

Soda blasting uses sodium bicarbonate, popularly known as baking soda. And from the look of things, they are inexpensive and 100% environmentally safe.

For this reason, you can use this blasting media to remove paint without damaging the concrete surface or having to break the bank.

This method is helpful, especially for textured or stamper surfaces that are quite challenging to strip chemically.

So, without further ado, here is how to soda blast paint off any concrete surface like a boss!

Read Also: How to Remove Car Paints

Step 1# – Clear the work area

First and foremost, you want to make sure that the work area is clear.

The working space should be free from flowers, antique silver, aluminum, glass, woody furniture, marble, and anything with deep grooves or cracks. The reason is that sodium bicarbonate takes its toll on these objects.

If there is a window nearby, you should cover it with plastic and mask tape. Whatever the case may be, you should protect any object or areas you do not want to treat.

Step 2# – Safety (optional)

Soda blasting uses a soft media (baking soda) that is inert and poses very little environmental threat as soon as it reaches the surface. Although you will have to protect yourself.

Soda blasting is safe, but the speed at which it propels the baking soda generates heat that could burn you. Also, you may experience a lot of kickback.

Sodium bicarbonate isn’t friendly with the human skin because it has a basic PH, whereas your skin is slightly acidic.

If they, however, come into contact for long, it neutralizes your skin’s natural acid levels. Thus, making it feel dry and cracked.

The same thing goes to your hair. It will strip it of its natural oils – leaving your hair feeling dry and brittle.

So, it’s imperative to throw in a pair of gloves, as the soda blasting gun can become hot, along with other regular PPE for safety reasons.

Step 3# – Setup the Soda Blasting Unit

Remember, the air compressor should be attached to the tank as well, before filling the canisters with the baking soda.

Keep feeding it with the sodium bicarbonate until you reach the gauge inside the canisters.

Lastly, you need to shut the lid and pull the ring to seal the canister tight –so it allows proper airflow.

Step 4# – Time to Soda Blast

To get the ideal result, you have to set the PSI on the pressure to 30. And, stand just about a few inches away from the concrete surface.

Aim the nozzle at the paint, and open the air valve before turning on the air compressor. Pull the trigger to thrust the sodium bicarbonate onto the surface.

You will notice the paints start peeling off immediately. Finally, after much blasting, wipe down the surface with soapy water to remove any leftovers.

Read Also: How to Remove Paint From Plastics

Expert Tips:

  • Use a unit that understands the proper collection and uses of spent soda.
  • When using direct pressure delivery, do not use than 30-35 PSI pressure.
  • It’s always advisable to use a direct pressure abrasive delivery system that allows lower blasting pressure to maximize abrasive velocity without reaching maximum soda impact velocity.
  • Ensuring you are using a ghost flows out the nozzle because it prevents soda from flooding and slower cleaning.
  • Soda propelled at higher pressure will surface etch, as well as change part metallurgy.

Soda Blasting Limitations

Admittedly, soda blasting will remove any coatings, but it is quite a hassle for thicker or more durable high-performance layers like polyurethanes and epoxies because they need extra passes

Whereas, for thinner sealers such as acrylic, it strips off pretty quickly – in just one pass.

Secondly, you can’t recycle soda like other abrasives like aluminum oxide, silicon carbide, garnet, and ceramic, plastic beads, or glass.

Also, due to its popularity, manufacturers and retailers are offering below the average quality soda to make quick cash.

And the subtle difference in the quality of soda can either cripple your productivity or skyrocket it.

Read Also: Can Vinegar Remove Metal Paints?

How do you remove paint from concrete naturally?

If you accidentally get fresh paint on a concrete surface, it’s easy to clean up: just cover the surface with water and then use a hard-bristled brush and detergent to scrub it away.

Does vinegar remove paint from concrete?

Safely Remove Paint from Concrete Floor with Vinegar

Vinegar is an inexpensive everyday cleaning product that doubles as a natural paint remover and a way to take care of an oil stain on driveway surfaces. Use vinegar to get paint off concrete without resorting to a toxic chemical paint stripper.

What takes dry paint off concrete?

Alcohol is a common household chemical that can be used to remove latex paint from concrete surfaces. Apply a generous amount of alcohol to a rag and apply it directly to the affected area. Massage the alcohol into the stain to loosen the paint. Tip: Avoid letting the latex paint cure!

Does WD 40 remove concrete paint?

WD40 is a light penetrating oil that can be effective in loosening latex spray paint from concrete surfaces.

How do you remove old paint from a concrete porch?

Project Summary

  • Clean the concrete surface thoroughly and let dry.
  • Scrape peeled or chipped paint.
  • Apply paint stripper and wait.
  • Remove paint stripper residue.
  • Reapply paint stripper as necessary.

Will vinegar take off paint?

Yes, vinegar dissolves both water-based paint and oil-based paint from wooden and metal surfaces. It’s a natural paint remover, making it one of the best ways to remove paint.

How do you remove paint from a driveway?

How to Get Paint Off Your Driveway

  • Spray the driveway with water.
  • Sprinkle scouring powder over the paint stain.
  • Scrub the stain with a wire brush.
  • Scrub the driveway with fine steel wool if the paint is still visible.
  • Apply paint remover to the stain and scrub with the wire brush.

How do you get masonry paint off stone?

water washing: including gentle sponging or scrubbing with a soft bristle brush may be effective for emulsions, limewash, and other very old, friable paints. steam stripping: superheated low-pressure steam stripping for water-thinned paints, such as emulsions, can clean without saturating the surface of the stone.

Can you use paint thinner on concrete?

Application. To use paint thinner on concrete, simply pour the product over any visible stains, completely saturating the affected area. Sprinkle an absorbent material, such as kitty litter, cornmeal or talcum powder, over the paint thinner. Wait 24 hours and then sweep the concrete.

Will a pressure washer remove paint from concrete?

Pressure washing is one way to remove paint from wood, metal, concrete, and other exterior surfaces. Selecting a pressure washer with a range of 2,000 PSI to 4,000 PSI will give you the most effective power for removing peeling paint. As with all power equipment, always wear safety glasses and closed toe shoes.


Learning how to remove paint from concrete without chemicals is a much better alternative for two reasons:

One, you are not working at the expense of your life. Secondly, if you are willing to put in a little time and effort, you can effectively make any paint or stain disappear.

All you need is to follow through our instructions.

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