Care of Concrete
Extreme and rapid changes in temperature and humidity affect all concrete adversely. Concrete has an inherent tendency to expand and contract with climatic conditions ( a phenomenon taken into account by experienced masons who employ expansion joints-like those "lines" in the sidewalk).
Your fountain has been manufactured with weather in mind. The concrete mix contains fiber and mechanical additives which enhance the elastic qualities of the concrete. The components are further reinforced with steel. Thus, normal, harmful surface shrinkage crack may sometimes appear, but your fountain will not crack through due to weather if one important rule is followed: DO NOT ALLOW WATER TO COLLECT AND FREEZE IN THE BOWL OR SHELL, AND DO NOT ALLOW THE FOUNTAINS TO SIT IN A POOL OF ICE!!
Shells and bowls left exposed to icing conditions may shale and crack do to the mechanic force of water solidifying and expanding along the concrete surface. The same principle also applies to concrete planters, make sure that planters are drained of water, or similar freezing and cracking may occur.
If your fountain cannot be stored indoors during the winter months, you must at least protect it form ice collection. First, remove the statue and pump, storing them inside if possible. Next, turn the bowl upside down on the pedestal. If this isn't practical, fill the bowl or shell with an absorbent material: burlap bags, blankets, etc. Then cover the entire fountain with heavy-duty plastic and twine. Should condensation droplets form on the inside of the plastic, they will be absorbed by the burlap. You have now protected your fountain for the winter season!
Little or nothing needs to be done to protect the finish of natural concrete statuary. Many people find the inevitable aging and weathering of natural stone to be appealing. But this natural weathering may be impeded, if you wish, by the application of a clear acrylic sealer, available from any hardware store. When applied seasonally, your fountains luster should remain for years. Finished fountains have been painted with penetrating sealer type paints, designed to resist the elements for many years. Should you choose to refinish your fountain after a number of years--whether in the original or a new color--Honeymoon Acre's can provide you with a Refinishing Kit, complete with all materials and instructions. To camouflage minor dings, nicks, and scratches, use a dab of almost any sort of paint for finishes that employ a black antique effect, use black paint; for lighter antiques, use white . Simply dab the paint onto the scratch, and wipe off the excess. The textured finishes of our concrete products "accept" paint easily, and your touch-up will blend in invisibly. Finally, depending upon temperature and evaporation, you may notice a build up of white residue on the surface of the bowl or shell. Such a buildup is normal and unavoidable in areas with high mineral content--especially lime--in local water supply. When the lime buildup finally becomes unsightly, it may be safely and easily removed by using Fountec Cleaner. This product is a water additive specifically designed to help lime residue from forming without affecting the fountain surface.