Does Patio Magic Work? – An Honest Review
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Watch My Patio Magic Review Video
Hey, my name is Daniel, and I used to work with cleaning chemicals as part of my previous job, so I know a few things about cleaning driveways, patios, blocks and other surfaces.
Patio Magic is one of the most popular patio cleaning products in the UK and is sold in most DIY stores and on Amazon, but reviews are mixed with some consumers saying it’s the best product ever while others state it doesn’t work at all.
What’s going on? Why are the reviews inconsistent?
On this page, I’ll show you some before and after photos, and provide you with an explanation as to why some customers say it doesn’t work.
I’ll also provide step-by-step instructions so you can get the best from Patio Magic, and I’ll suggest alternatives that work quicker.
Before and After Photos of Patio Magic
There is a concrete slab outside my door, and I treated half of the slab with Patio Magic and took a photo.
One week later, I took another shot.
The 45 days after application, I took another photo.
Here they are:
This is what the concrete slab looked like after two weeks. Note the lighter colour in the top left side of the slab.
I didn’t use power washers, brushes or even water to get these results. I didn’t even wash Patio Magic off the surface, I just applied it and left it alone for 45 days,
Why Does Patio Magic Take so Long to Work?
Patios become dirty and look grubby because lichens, mould, algae, and moss grows on the surface.
Unlike many other cleaning products, Patio Magic isn’t designed to melt away this growth.
Patio Magic isn’t particularly caustic.
Patio Magic contains a fungicide, and while that will kill the lichens, algae, mould and moss, it won’t burn them off the patio.
After applying Patio Magic, the patio will initially look the same as it did before.
However, as the organic matter dies after the application, it’s simply a case of waiting for the lichen/mould/algae etc., to degrade and decay away – this usually takes around 30-45 days.
Put it another way; Patio Magic will kill whatever is growing on your patio and ruining its appearance, but based on the results of my testing, it won’t remove it.
Patio Magic isn’t a powerful acid that melts away whatever it comes into contact with. Instead, I’ve found that you need to wait for the matter to naturally decay away after the treatment.
Patio Magic does work, but only if you have patience – It’s not for everyone, but there are alternatives.
In a Hurry? Use This Alternative to Patio Magic
If you’re in a hurry, Patio Magic isn’t for you; here’s a couple of reviews I found online:
I followed the instructions exactly and after 48 hours, I can’t see any change in the appearance of my patio.
I waited a few days and nothing. I got a different product and it cleaned the patio in a few hours.
If you need instant results, forget Patio Magic, you’ll need a far more aggressive cleaning chemical instead.
Sodium Hypochlorite is a powerful bleach with a high alkaline content, so high that it’s corrosive to lichen, mould, moss and algae.
This chemical is widely used in the cleaning industry and can be found in dozens of professional and readily-available patio cleaning products and I’ve used it myself in the past.
Unlike Patio Magic, in my tests, I found that this chemical will dissolve the organic matter growing on the patio and in many cases, it got get rid of it in less than an hour.
I’m not exaggerating when I claim that you can quite literally watch the organic matter dissolve off your patio.
The video below was published by Dirty Drive-Away and contains everything you need to know about this product.
The before and after images are also nothing short of incredible:
The Drawbacks of Using Sodium Hypochlorite
Sodium Hypochlorite is a bleach and it’s harsh, here’s why I don’t use it:
- Sodium hypochlorite is corrosive to the point that it will take the skin off if abused.
- It’s also corrosive to most metals and can discolour them. It can also stain some plastics, this something I’ve seen before.
- It reacts with other chemicals, where it can give off fumes. It can’t be mixed with weedkiller for example.
- You will need to test a patch of patio first.
- It can’t be used on tarmac.
- When I tested it, I had to dilute and rinse it off the patio after the application, just to be safe.
The Benefits of Patio Magic
This is why I rate Patio Magic:
- It’s much gentler and reacts with fewer chemicals and surfaces.
- I’ve used it on patios, concrete, tarmac and timber decking/fences over the years and I’ve always had good results.
- There’s no need to rinse it off.
- I’ve never used a brush, there’s no need to scrub the patio.
- It doesn’t contain powder or granules so it didn’t block my garden sprayers.
I prefer Patio Magic as I don’t mind waiting for the dead matter to decay away naturally, and I know if I put it down once a year in the spring, that will be enough to remove and prevent lichens, algae, moss, mould etc.
I would only consider a more aggressive approach if I were in a hurry to clean the surface, perhaps I had visitors, or I was selling the house and wanted to spruce up the garden for potential buyers etc.
I’ve previously used the ingredient in Patio Magic on roof tiles to kill off green mould, lichens, and other organic matter, the feedback from customers has been very good.
My One Complaint
Patio Magic states in their marketing that the customer can see results in “3-4 days”.
Based on my testing and well over a decade of use, I feel this is nonsense and probably explains why some customers are disappointed and leave a negative review after a few days.
I can only presume that telling the truth would adversely affect sales as most people want fast results and wouldn’t want to wait 45 days.
The Dos and Don’ts of Using Patio Magic
My expert advice will help you get the most out of Patio Magic:
- Choose a dry but overcast day so the liquid won’t evaporate in the sun or get washed away in the rain.
- Pick a calm day without wind, so the chemical doesn’t drift onto plants.
- Brush any excess loose matter off the patio first (optional).
- Conduct a test on a small patch first and leave for a few days.
- Wear PPE and follow the safety guidance written on the bottle.
- I used a small 5-litre pump garden sprayer and it was sufficient for my small garden. I recommend Spear & Jackson (sold on Amazon) for accurate targeting and to reduce wastage.
- Be patient, it does work.
- There’s no need to increase the dilution rate as this is a strong chemical.
- Don’t allow pets or children onto the surface for at least 24 hours or until it has dried.
- Don’t allow the liquid to runoff into watercourses as it’s harmful to fish.
- Don’t expect instant results.
- It won’t remove mud or weeds as it’s a fungicide, nothing more and nothing less.
Longevity: How Long Does Patio Magic Last?
Based on my experience, mould, lichens, moss, and other similar organic matter won’t start to regrow for at least a year and possibly much longer if the patio is located in a sunny spot.
If your patio is in a very shaded and damp garden, I suggest you reapply Patio Magic once a year. If it’s in a sunny spot, apply between once a year and once every two years.
At my previous property, which had a large patio area, I sprayed Patio Magic onto the surface once a year in the spring, and I had excellent results.
The Chemical-Free Option
If you don’t want to use chemicals to clean your patio, the next best thing is a pressure washer.
This is a more labour-intensive approach, and I’ve found that some lichens are so difficult to remove that they may remain.
Another option is to use a stiff broom and washing up liquid as this acts as a degreaser, removing pollution from the surface.
I’ve found that neither of these options will be as effective as Patio Magic or Hypochlorite, but they are more environmentally friendly.
Below I’ll answer the most common questions about Patio Magic:
Why Should I Trust Your Advice?
I spent 17 years working with the chemical that’s found in Patio Magic, so I know exactly how it works, what it does and what it doesn’t do. Go check out the video and before and after photos if you need more convincing.
Can I Mix Patio Magic and Hypochlorite to Get the Best of Both?
Hypochlorite cannot be mixed with other chemicals as it will produce noxious gases.
What is the Best Way to Apply Patio Magic?
The best way to apply Patio Magic is via a small 5-litre pump sprayer, as you can carefully control how much product is used and avoid excess runoff onto lawns, borders and watercourses.
You can use a watering can but there’s an increased risk of wastage.
Patio Magic Didn't Work and I've Waited 30 days. Why?
Patio Magic contains a fungicide that will kill off the following:
- Lichens (mostly black spots, sometimes white, on patios, concrete and blocks).
These four are what makes most patios look dirty and dull.
However, if your patio is simply dirty from mud or even from pollution, perhaps because you live near a motorway, then Patio Magic will have no effect as it’s a fungicide, nothing more and nothing less.
Which Chemical is the Safest?
Both have the potential to harm humans and the environment, but Hypochlorite is more corrosive and less stable.
Can I Use Domestic Bleach Instead of Hypochlorite?
Hypochlorite is a bleach; the only difference os most domestic bleaches are in gel form, so they stick to the side of toilets. The best product for external cleaning would be a watery product rather than a gel product. Also, domestic bleach is more expensive as it’s sold in smaller bottles.
Can Patio Magic Be Used With Patio Sealers?
If you want to seal your patio, you’ll need to power wash it first to completely remove any contaminants before the sealer is applied.
You can certainly treat the patio with a weedkiller and a moss treatment product such as Patio Magic, as this can prevent the weeds and moss from reappearing, but the surface of the patio will also need to be thoroughly cleaned as well.
Here are the basic steps to cleaning and sealing a patio:
- Powerwash the patio to remove all contaminants.
- Treat with a weed killer and/or a moss killer product (make sure they are allowed to dry before re-applying), ensuring the products soak into the patio and any gaps between the slabs.
- Allow to dry fully.
- Apply the sealer as per the manufacturer’s instructions.
Which is Best, The Concentrate or Ready to Use Version?
The ready-to-use bottle is a watered-down version of the original concentrated product.
The ready-to-use version doesn’t go very far and costs much more per square metre but has the advantage that you don’t need to mix it with water.
I never use ready-to-use chemicals as there’s more plastic wastage, they cost more and don’t treat as big a surface.
The concentrated version lasts for years and isn’t expensive so I recommend this product.
I Analysed 4469 Online Reviews – Here’s What I Found
As part of my research into Patio Magic for this guide, I analysed 4500 reviews in 2022.
Here’s what I found:
86% of reviewers gave Patio Magic a 4 or 5 stars rating. This is very high compared to alternative products.
Only 3% gave a rating of 1 star.
A considerable number of the negative reviews were from customers who hadn’t waited more than a few days before leaving a rating and comment.
There were several complaints that pet cats and dogs had become ill after licking the product from the patio (despite the warning label stating that pets should be kept off the patio until the product had dried).
Patio Magic has been sold online since 2010; the first review I could find was on the 28th of March 2010.
Choose Your Product
I hope you found my honest review of Patio Magic insightful.
Now it’s time to choose your patio cleaning product:
DIY Gardening’s Testing and Review Process
Daniel has been using the chemical in Patio Magic for well over a decade, primarily to treat roof tiles, concrete and tarmac in an effort to stop mould and lichen from growing.
DIY Gardening tested Patio Magic in April 2022 on a concrete slab that was dirty and had lichen growth on the surface – this is common and found on most external hard surfaces and is what makes them look grubby.
Author: Daniel Woodley
Daniel has over 18 years of experience in the construction, home improvement, and landscape garden industries.
He previously worked as a project manager and has experience in managing teams of tradespeople and landscape gardeners on both small and medium sized projects.
Daniel is also a keen gardener and enjoys growing unusual plants and tending to his lawn.
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