It’s quite common to replace the top of a patio table. Less common is creating a concrete table top for replacement. It’s pretty easy to do, though, and you’ll have a durable and attractive top for your patio table.
Courtney West, of the blog Our Alabama Life, has the tutorial. Just follow the step-by-step instructions to create your own concrete table top.
Concrete Table Top
When my husband and I got married (ten years ago now- wow!), our in-laws handed down a patio set they no longer wanted. At the time, I did a quick spray paint job on the table and chairs and called it quits. Since then, the set was showing quite a bit of wear and tear. We replaced the chairs a few years ago, but it felt wasteful getting rid of the table. With the exception of a cracked top, and needing a new coat of paint, it’s still a great table.
Instead of scrapping it, we decided to remove the glass top and make an entirely new, concrete table top.
Here’s how we created the concrete table top.
- Plywood sheet
- 80-pound bag of Quikrete concrete mix
- Pool trowel
- Concrete mixing tub
- Jigsaw (to cut the plywood)
- 8 — 1¼-in. bolts
Our table had a frame around the glass top, so we started by removing the frame and broken glass.
We got really lucky and the glass remained intact enough that we could trace the shape onto our plywood, assuring the size was correct for the frame. (If you were doing this without a frame, you would need to use melamine board to create your own frame or mold.)
Before re-painting the table, we sanded it down really well using a wire wheel attached to a drill. After wiping down the table with a tack cloth to remove the dust, we applied two coats of Rust-Oleum Matte Spray Paint.
Then, using a jigsaw, we cut the plywood into our shape.
Next, we placed the frame around the plywood circle and used 1¼-in. bolts to secure the plywood to the table base.
Finally, we get to the concrete! We combined the cement mix with water and poured it onto the plywood base. (Well, one of us mixed and poured. The other of us supervised!)
Pay attention to the product instructions when mixing–it’s very important to add just the right amount of water.
Because our tabletop was only going to be 1-inch thick, we didn’t need to use reinforcement. If you are pouring your concrete thicker, you will need to use wire mesh or hardware cloth to reinforce the concrete.
Then we smoothed.
The biggest tip I have is to be patient. Just when you think you have the top smooth, water will rise to the surface and you’ll need to smooth some more!
When you are finally finished smoothing the surface, you rest, relax, and let that baby dry. It takes concrete of this thickness between 24 and 48 hours to dry completely.
And finally–that table is all ready for afternoon snack time!
The entire process took us about four hours (plus a babysitter!), not including dry time for the concrete. It was a quick and easy project that gave our table major appeal!
Disclaimer: The base of our table is extremely sturdy. Concrete table tops are heavy, so before you attempt this project, make sure whatever base you plan to use is strong enough to hold the concrete safely.
This concrete table top project is part of our Cement DIY Challenge series here on The Home Depot Blog. We challenged some of our favorite DIY and decor bloggers to come up with a DIY projects using cement.
Courtney West Courtney is an Alabama native who lives with her husband, Justin, and three children. Her blog, Our Alabama Life, covers a random slew of people and events that tell the story of her life in the South.