How to Remove Spray Paint From Concrete? (4 Methods)

Spray paint is applied at high-speed and adheres to the concrete strongly. So, how to remove it from concrete?

To strip spray paint from concrete, use power washing, TSP, paint stripper, or sanding. A paint stripper is a solvent-based product that will dissolve the particles and remove the paint.

However, you must be careful while using these methods as you can easily damage the concrete surface. 

How To Remove Spray Paint From Concrete?

Since concrete is a porous surface, removing spray paint from it is hard. However, here are 4 methods that you can try:

1. Power Washing

Power Washing

A pressure washer will blast the spray paint off the surface and remove it. Since concrete is porous, blasting water at high pressure will remove its finish. However, you must wait a few days for the concrete to dry after using a power washer.

Here are the tools you need:

  • Pressure washer
  • Garden hose
  • Gloves
  • A pair of goggles
  • A mop
  • Detergent
  • A 15-degree pressure washer nozzle

Here is a guide for this method:

  1. Connect the pressure washer to the garden hose. The high-pressure hose must be fixed in the high-pressure inlet. 
  2. Attach a 15-degree nozzle to the washer.
  3. Stay 3-4 feet away from the surface and use the washer firmly.
  4. Prime and test to see if water comes out.
  5. Blast off the spray paint until it’s completely gone. 
  6. If the paint doesn’t come off on the first try, use a smaller nozzle tip and stand closer to the surface. 
  7. Remove excess water from the surface using a mop or rag, and allow it to dry for a few days. 

2. Wiping With TSP (Trisodium Phosphate)

Wiping With TSP (Trisodium Phosphate)

TSP (Trisodium Phosphate) is an alkaline-based cleaning agent that can dissolve spray paint stains. This cleaning agent comes in a powder form, and you must mix it with warm water. After pouring the TSP mixture, wipe or scrub the affected spot with a scrubbing brush.

Here are the tools you need:

  • TSP (Trisodium Phosphate)
  • A hard-scrubbing brush
  • Baking soda or detergent (optional)
  • A bucket of warm water
  • A mop

Here is a guide to this method:

  1. Mix a tablespoon of TSP with 2 gallons (or 7.5 liters) of warm water.
  2. Apply the TSP mixture over the affected spots.
  3. Wait 15 minutes.
  4. Use a scrubbing brush to scrub the affected spots.
  5. Rinse the surface with warm water.
  6. Allow it to dry. 

Tip: You can also mix baking soda or detergent with TSP to create a stronger mixture. 

3. Apply A Paint Stripper

Apply A Paint Stripper

Paint stripper is a solvent or chemical-based product that removes multiple coats of dry or water spray paint.

Here are the tools you need:

  • A paint stripper
  • Paintbrushes
  • A Putty knife
  • Rags
  • Mineral spirits
  • A mop

Here is a guide for this method:

  1. Clean the surface to remove dust or filth.
  2. Apply a thick coat of the paint stripper over the affected surface. 
  3. Wait 15 minutes.
  4. Once the stripping compound is dry, use a paint scraper to scrape it. The spray paint will come off too.
  5. Repeat the steps for leftover paint.
  6. Wipe the concrete with mineral spirits to remove the residue of the stripping compound. 
  7. Allow it to dry. 

4. Use a Power Sander

Use Power Sanders To Remove The Spray Paint

The fastest way to strip spray paint is to use a power sander or sandpaper. Sanding will remove the paint and smooth out the concrete simultaneously. For larger surfaces, use power sand, and for small surfaces, use sandpaper (manually sand it). To sand, use medium or coarse-grit sandpaper.

Sanding gradually removes the paint coating until it’s completely gone.

Here are the tools you need:

  • A power sander (optional)
  • Sandpaper 80-grit – 220-grit
  • A duster or vacuum
  • A pair of gloves

Here is a guide for this method:

  1. Attach 80-grit sandpaper to the power sander or manually sand the surface.
  2. Sand for 5 minutes. 
  3. Attach 150-grit sandpaper and re-sand the surface. 
  4. Clean the dust and inspect the surface to see if the paint is gone. 
  5. If it isn’t, sand again.
  6. Remove dust and clean the surface. 

Since you didn’t use a liquid or didn’t wet the concrete, you can immediately re-paint it after sanding. 

Protecting Concrete 

  1. Rinse the concrete to get rid of the residue of the paint-removal products.
  2. Don’t use acid-based solvents.
  3. Use a waterproof drop sheet over the parts of the surface that aren’t affected by paint. 
  4. Don’t over-apply solvents, as they can discolor the surface.
  5. Use concrete-friendly paint removers.
  6. Allow the surface to dry fully before using it.
  7. Don’t use paint scrapers, as they can scratch or damage the surface. 

It’s important to clean the concrete surface after using liquid products. That’s because most paint-removing products will damage or etch the surface if left for too long. 

To clean concrete after paint removal:

  1. Apply mineral spirits over the surface. 
  2. Wait 5 minutes.
  3. Scrub the surface with a soft brush. 
  4. Wash the concrete with detergent.
  5. Rinse the surface.
  6. Allow it to dry.

If you don’t have mineral spirits, use natural oil or oil-based solvents. 

Final Words

In summary, removing spray paint from concrete is easy if you know the right tools or methods. To strip small paint stains, wash the surface with a pressure washer or TSP and to remove large spray stains, use a paint stripper or power sander.

Leave a Comment