Last Updated on December 24, 2015 by Kristi Linauer
Okay, let me put your mind at ease. Fixing the dent in my concrete countertop didn’t actually cost me $500. But you’ll understand soon why I made that joke. 🙂
I tried several things to fix the dent caused by my sander mishap.
I tried using some of the concrete mixed to a thicker consistency, which didn’t work because the aggregate (which is just sand, I believe) in the concrete mix was just too big to be workable on an area that required such detail. I tried using unsanded grout, but I just couldn’t get the color right. I tried mixing half concrete with half unsanded grout, but still the color wasn’t right.
I just kept thinking that the ideal thing to use was the concrete mix itself…obviously. But the aggregate was too big. I needed the consistency of the dry concrete to be much less like…well…concrete, and much more like the fine powdery unsanded grout. So how could I get the aggregate smaller?
I considered sifting the mix, but that would basically leave me with cement, wouldn’t it? And I wasn’t sure if cement works by itself apart from the aggregate that makes it concrete.
And then I had a brilliant idea. I have a tool at my disposal that will grind just about anything. It’ll turn golf clubs and iPads to fine powder. Yes, that’s right. I’m talking about my Blendtec mixer. Sooooo…concrete. Will it blend? I decided to find out. 😀
I headed into Matt’s game room to get the blender (where it’s been living ever since our kitchen has been torn apart), and as I started unplugging the blender, he asked what I was doing with it. I explained, and he just gave me that oh my gosh, she’s insane look. But I’m used to that look by now. And since he didn’t specifically request that I not do it, I proceeded.
I put quite a bit of the powdered (DRY!!) concrete into the blender, and blended it on high for 50 seconds. Then I poured it out and let it cool down. (That stuff got incredibly hot!!). Then back in for a second blending, and back out to cool. Then a third blending, and back out to cool.
Then I took that finely ground mix, added just enough water so that it had a clay-like texture (kind of like Play-Doh, but a bit wetter), and I put a glob of it into a piece of the edge form. Then I pressed it against the edge, and swiped the edge form to the left. I wiped out the edge form, spritzed the inside of the edge form and the concrete glob with water, pressed and swiped to the right.
I just kept repeating this process (wipe off the edge form, spritz with water, press, and swipe) until it looked like this…
Once I got it pretty smooth, I just left it and let it dry, hoping and praying that it would turn out the same color. I came back periodically throughout the day to give it a quick sanding until I figured it was as smooth as it was going to get.
I was pretty excited that it looked like it was going to work, so in my excitement, I headed into Matt’s room to deliver the good news.
“I think my idea is going to work! I fixed the dent!” I said in my super excited, I’m-so-impressed-with-my-own-ingenuity voice.
And without even skipping a beat, he responded in his dry, not-as-impressed-with-my-ingenuity-as-I-am voice, “That’s great. Was it worth $500?” And then he turned and looked at me with a little smirk on his face. 😀
The Blendtec is safe, though. Since I didn’t add water to it, and only used it to blend the dry concrete, there was no chance of me accidentally leaving it to dry and harden as I got sidetracked with other things. So in reality, the cost of this fix was zero dollars.
And for the record, our Blendtec didn’t cost $500. It was a bargain at only $450. I reminded Matt of that this morning, and to my shock and amazement, he still didn’t seem impressed. 😀
Here’s what it looks like this morning…
It’s not perfect, but I’d rather it be imperfect in the correct shape than obviously dented.
Now I just hope that the color remains the same after it has been sealed. If so, I’ll be one happy DIYer with completely sealed and completely finished concrete countertops today. If not, it’s back to the drawing board.
Addicted 2 Decorating is where I share my DIY and decorating journey as I remodel and decorate the 1948 fixer upper that my husband, Matt, and I bought in 2013. Matt has M.S. and is unable to do physical work, so I do the majority of the work on the house by myself. You can learn more about me here.
I hope you’ll join me on my DIY and decorating journey! If you want to follow my projects and progress, you can subscribe below and have each new post delivered to your email inbox. That way you’ll never miss a thing!
DebbieJune 26, 2014 at 9:54 am
Not only are you a fantastic decorator, you are a great writer!
terrillrJune 26, 2014 at 9:59 am
Very impressive! And, if need be, you’ll only be out the cost of a new container, not the whole blender!! 🙂
SherryJune 26, 2014 at 10:11 am
DarleneJune 26, 2014 at 10:12 am
You are one smart lady! I am so impressed….I couldn’t imagine how you were going to fix it. Got my fingers crossed it’s the right color after sealing. I have one nagging question – do you think the repair will adhere to the dry counter and not fall off if bumped?
Kristi LinauerJune 26, 2014 at 11:41 am
I was concerned about that as well, but I actually think it’ll be fine. I’ve hit it, bumped it, leaned against it while working, sanded the heck out of it, and it has held up. If it were on another countertop, like by the sink or the stove, I might be more concerned about it. But since it’s on the one countertop that will see the least amount of regular use, I think it’ll hold up unless something is dropped directly on it.
Paula DurhamJune 26, 2014 at 10:40 am
You are so awesome. You impress me daily. Did you figure the cost yet?
Kristi LinauerJune 26, 2014 at 11:42 am
I’ll hopefully have that info tomorrow…along with completely sealed and finished countertops. 🙂
ashleyJune 26, 2014 at 11:02 am
looks great I love the way this turned out!!!
JessicaJune 26, 2014 at 11:03 am
Couldnt you stain the countertop so it’s all the same color? I’m sure you could find a white marble-like stain that would look amazing.
Kristi LinauerJune 26, 2014 at 11:47 am
I probably could, but I’m trying to avoid that if at all possible. I’d like to get these finished today, and staining would postpone that.
GuerrinaJune 26, 2014 at 11:06 am
PhoebeJune 26, 2014 at 11:06 am
But will it stay there? If it ever comes off maybe you can repeat the process but first add two screws protruding from the bench so that they will be buried in the extra piece and keep it there? (Still better that you try it this way first, it would be terrible if you damaged the benchtop even more AND then it didn’t work)…
And I say that your husband just can’t appreciate ingenuity 😛
PhoebeJune 26, 2014 at 11:07 am
Ehm, when I say “this way” I mean the way you did, sorry, wasn’t very clear…
Gilmer GalJune 26, 2014 at 11:17 am
Phoebe, that’s exactly what I was thinking. Hopefully it will stick and be the proper color as it is now. Maybe after it is sealed, it will adhere to the rest of the countertop. Right now I am pret-ty impressed…
Kristi LinauerJune 26, 2014 at 11:48 am
Great idea! If this comes off, I’ll keep that in mind.
Rose LJune 27, 2014 at 12:15 am
As I was reading this, I too was thinking of the small pins that dentists drill into a tooth to help hold a large filling in place. Hopefully you will never need to go there! So the floor is great, the cabinets are gorgeous (I’m so impressed!) the counter tops have me gob smacked, and I love the new green paint that you have chosen!! Gee… what’s next?!! I can’t wait to see 😉
RebeccaJune 26, 2014 at 11:11 am
If it doesn’t dry the right color, you can always look at it as wabi sabi, the Japanese aesthetic that says it is the imperfections that make something beautiful.
CharlotteJune 26, 2014 at 11:28 am
That’ my go to saying!
AltaJune 26, 2014 at 11:14 am
ROFL! Kristi, you are such a hoot! Not only are you a creative genius and a DIY diva, but you are a great writer too! LOL! Seriously, you should send this post to Blendtec. They could make a commercial out of it!
And if that repair is a little bit off color from the rest of the countertop, so what??? It will be a reminder of your ingenuity, not to mention adding to the hand-crafted appearance. But, I had a difficult time seeing where the repair was in the final photo. My only concern is, how well will the repair adhere to the rest of the countertop. Hopefully, all worries about that will prove unnecessary, and it will hold up very well for years. Maybe the sealer will help bind everything together, ya think?
I’m excited to see the finished sealed countertops too. Will you need to allow the repair to cure before you can finish that one? If so, it will take a little more patience, but progress is being made.
Thanks for sharing all your foibles and triumphs with us – I look forward to it every day!
Onward and Upward!
Brenda PawloskiJune 26, 2014 at 11:14 am
I can’t wait to see the pendant light Matt gifted to you in this beautiful kitchen. You have certainly created an appropriate home for it. It will be like jewelry.
C.B. McDuffJune 26, 2014 at 11:43 am
LOL – it really is hard to believe that ALL of this is Matt’s fault! Hahahaha!
That this started over one little tiny lamp!
but look at it now – you have done a STUNNING job so far – pretty soon tile,,,,paint and YES — a SINK will be in place!!!
Keep up the fantastic job, my Interior HERO!!
JaclynJune 26, 2014 at 11:46 am
Great Job! Love it when people think outside the box..I admire you
SueJune 26, 2014 at 12:06 pm
Wow! Great idea to use the Blend-Tec. Obviously, it worked well and fixrd your countertop edge. I bet it’ll be great when its all buffed out and sealed.
Cindy BrownJune 26, 2014 at 12:41 pm
One word – BRILLIANT!
KarenJune 26, 2014 at 1:14 pm
I saw the blendtec and my heart stopped. Glad it is ok!
Sheila F.June 26, 2014 at 1:16 pm
Excellent job. I think the patch will blend in. Concrete is not perfect. Only your readers will know the truth. And only because you were kind enough to share with us. If I do concrete counters I may put a dent in just as a tribute to KRISTI THE GREAT!
ColleenJune 26, 2014 at 1:42 pm
The whole time I was reading I was thinking to myself. ……. “she is going to use the blender! she is going to use the blender……..yikes! She IS USING THE BLENDER!!! like it was a thriller I was reading.
You made my day. 🙂
Mark TisdaleJune 26, 2014 at 2:41 pm
Fingers crossed it never lets go, but it looks good to me! If anything it kind of reminds me of the gentle worn look that really old stone has – like in ancient cathedrals and castles – how one section that is used frequently has worn ever so slightly more than the rest.
Although honestly I have a suspicion if you had never drawn our eyes to it, the repair would be pretty darned invisible. I agree, definitely better now than dented. LOL
AndreaJune 26, 2014 at 4:18 pm
You’re so edgy…. 😉 bah ha ha ha 😉 <3
MaryAnne LoobyJune 26, 2014 at 5:55 pm
BAZINGA……not much else to say, LOL…..oh wait, what exactly is a Blendtec?
GraceJune 26, 2014 at 7:46 pm
Girl…all I can say is you have got some really big ovaries!!!!
Louann McLaughlinJune 26, 2014 at 8:57 pm
I am super impressed with your diy attitude and impressive skills. I am a semi house flipper and I would love to get the info, product name, tools and all it took to do these concrete counter tops. I would love to give it a try.
YolandaJune 26, 2014 at 9:07 pm
You go girl! I will keep my fingers crossed that all continues to go well. Cannot wait for what happens next…..
JeniJune 26, 2014 at 9:25 pm
I think you should work with one of the companies of the countertops or the mixer to redesign your newly discovered tool. Market it as another tool and sell it in the big box home stores. Remember me when you strike it rich! 🙂
cindyJune 27, 2014 at 12:22 am
Your post had hubby and I laughing so hard we cried. I once used my BRAND NEW Dyson to vacuum our front walk way (Yep..the one that leads from the sidewalk to the front door.) after the kiddos had broken A LOT of confetti eggs all over the front yard…..Tiny shreds of paper all over the place. Not to mention our housewarming party guests arriving within minutes of discovery. The Dyson is still going strong, though I’m convinced some of my neighbors still think I’m bat-a** crazy
I love your blog. Watching you transform your home is awesome, but really….I so appreciate the posts about your mental process. I thought professionals just “had that knack” and I never realized it was a process to you just as it is to me. Thank you.
DebraJune 27, 2014 at 4:37 am
While I realize the dent in the countertop would have driven you crazy, I actually kinda liked it. A badge of honor, if you will. What a story to tell each time someone admires your fab kitchen!
Carol-AnneJune 27, 2014 at 5:19 am
it looks great! can’t wait to see how these look when finished!
i’ve said it before, but you really are amazing!
TammyJune 27, 2014 at 5:25 am
YOU ARE AMAZING…..!!!! I couldn’t even tell where the dent was when I saw the “after” picture… like the one blogger said, “No one would even know it was there if you hadn’t shared that process with us” Freaking AWESOME job Kristi…!!!! I too love your blog….!!!!
YOU ARE MY SUPERWOMEN HERO TOOOOOOOOO,,,,,!!!!!!!!!!
KellyJune 27, 2014 at 3:24 pm
You are so amazing! Seriously, you are such an inspiration. I would have never thought of this solution.
If someone’s looking to do concrete countertops they should look at these …. and then browse YHL’s blog on how not to do them! Ha!
Kristi LinauerJune 28, 2014 at 10:15 am
Haha! 😀 Well in fairness, mine are real, actual concrete countertops, so comparing them to Ardex-coated laminate is kind of apples and oranges. 😉 I have seen some Ardex countertops that look quite amazing (like the white Ardex countertop that Kara Paslay did), but I think the key to getting those to look amazing is in the application. If you compare Kara’s white countertop to YHL’s countertop, you can see that Kara applied the Ardex in short, random, organic strokes, much like one would apply Venetian plaster to a wall. The result was stunning. It kind of looked like marble. But if you watch the video of John applying the Ardex to their kitchen countertop, you see that he did long, straight strokes from one end to the other. The problem with doing it that way is that no matter how steady your hand is, nobody can get perfectly straight lines from one end to the other like that, and those not-so-straight lines are very evident in the finished product and just look like mistakes. I think they could have gotten much better results had they used the short, random, organic strokes like Kara did.
Genelle McDanielJune 27, 2014 at 4:19 pm
Necessity is the mother of invention! I do hope Concrete Solutions is monitoring your blog. They’ll be as amazed as we are.
Tamara Tasse ~ This Mom is a Basket CaseJune 29, 2014 at 9:02 am
Brilliant! The blender thing sounds like something I would do but probably destroy it in the process LOL Who knows, I’m older and supposedly wiser now so I might have left it in one piece 😉
I hate my travertine tile counter tops and was looking into concrete. I thought it would be too much work to do ourselves but after watching your process, it’s looking very doable!
Your kitchen is really shaping up and I’m loving the process! Thanks so much for the awesome detail in your posts! The finished project is going to look amazing!