To make sure that your purchase will last and remains the accent of your landscape for many generations to come, some consideration and preparation should be taken into account.
One of the characteristics of cured concrete is that it absorbs moisture. Water expands under freezing conditions, and it is at this state that concrete is weakest when facing extreme cold weather elements. Please take the following precautionary suggestions to prevent damage to your decorative concrete purchase. Frost disintegration occurs when water absorbed in concrete freezes. Snow and ice accumulate inside bowls, basins and other cavities and during the day melts to absorb into the concrete. Although concrete mix designs accommodate some flexibility of the cement in many cases, the rock aggregate near the surface does not. When temperatures drop at night, there could be a potential for cured concrete to chip, pit and in some cases even crack.
DO NOT USE ANTIFREEZE IN YOUR FOUNTAIN as a preventive measure to frost disintegration. Antifreeze is a harmful product to humans, animals and the environment.
It is recommended that decorative concrete items are protected from frost disintegration by storing components indoors or covered by a tarp or cover. While covering decorative concrete, it is recommended that the outer edges and lower portions are wrapped with a moisture absorbent material, such as moving blankets or towels to protect components from being in contact with condensation that might develop on the inside of the tarp or cover when temperatures drop (i.e. from a nice sunny winter day to a frigid winter night).
Concrete that is dry will not be harmed (in any way) by any natural temperature change no matter how drastic.
We suggest that birdbath or fountain tops not be left outside in the winter. Once the top fills with water/snow and freezes, the top may crack. All birdbath or fountain bases, bench legs and statuary should be raised up off the ground in winter so they will not freeze to the ground surface.