Disclaimer: No, I can't buy ready made surface leveler, because in Brazil this doesn't exist.

I need to use a resurface a dry pack levelling that my previous contractor made a lousy job (porous surface here and there and a few cracks, but it seem well adhered). He is not answering my calls and I'm not calling anyone else to fix something this small.

Everytime I mixed sand and cement I always got a headache on getting the right mix or the right type of sand (in Brazil there are at least 4 different types of sand: coarse, medium, fine, and washed, most from river beds).

What would be a good recipe for a resurfacer, also, I should use bonding agent, right?

  • Typically, to my knowledge drypack is used as a preparation for a finish floor. Will this get covered, or will it be the exposed wear surface? As a mention, the even though you may not have it there anyway, self-leveling cements are not to be the final wear surface either.
    – Jack
    Feb 1, 2015 at 8:25
  • The drypack was supposes to be the leveling layer averaging 4 cm thickness. After that I will use a waterproof liquid membrane which is meant to be left in the open but without people traffic. I think he wanted to save on cement and used something like 1:5 for the drypack and probably didn't compacted enough. It is mostly OK, but the bad parts demand a complete coverup. Feb 1, 2015 at 10:16

3 Answers 3


Roughen all areas to be resurfaced, remove any loose or unstable material. Dry mix 5 parts fine sand to 1 part portland cement. Moisten entire area to be resurfaced. Add small amounts of water, a little bit at a time, and thoroughly mix until entire batch is damp. For initial dry-pack, proper mix should hold as a clump if you squeeze together in your hand, but easily come apart if you break it up. For your resurfacing purpose, it could be a bit wetter but not liquidy. Spread out and pack firmly into area in question with a wood float, use the wood float to feather the edges of the repair into existing surface. Use a spray bottle to moisten as needed while you float it out. Screed or float out as level as you need it to be but the surface does not have to be super smooth.

Apply water-proofing membrane, then apply additional treatments (float regular cement on top of membrane then install tile?). Drypack is most often used to establish initial slope for the surface, not for applying final finish treatment to.

  • Thanks for the input. I tried to hit it a bit with a hammer to test how good the surface was, and it crumble to dust. So I used a rotary hammer and broke everything he had done (it was so "sandy" that i took 2-3 hours to break 10 square meters). Now after I remove it, I will properly clean it (using a power washer to remove all dust) and apply a new leveling layers. This time I will use a 1:4 cement sand, a little on the mortar side (maybe a little drier). Apr 24, 2015 at 20:10
  • Sir, a dry-pack is not supposed to get hard like concrete. It is commonly used to establish a slope under a waterproof barrier, so that water which penetrates the porous concrete (or other material) above the waterproof barrier will run towards a designated low spot, like to a drain or off of an edge. Apr 24, 2015 at 20:15
  • It is not concrete, but it shouldn't crumble also. It was turning to dust and digging holes just by rubbing your shoe on it. Apr 24, 2015 at 20:18

The latex paint should not be more than 20%. So mix the latex and water at 2 to 10 and use it to mix 2 parts white cement and 5 parts fine sand.

Adding ajax dish liquid (do not use dawn or ivory) to the mix alows and easier spread and a creamier texture like peanut butter.

  • Hello, and welcome to Home Improvement. Thanks for the answer; keep 'em coming. And, you should probably take our tour so you'll know the details of contributing here. Aug 12, 2020 at 1:00

The following recipe might work better (but can take days to dry).

1 part latex paint, 1 part cement,
1 part water,
4 parts fine sand.

Latex paint adds polymers to the cement which will reduce shrinkage and help maintain it's originial form.

Source: http://www.ehow.com/how_4516234_mix-latex-paint-concrete.html

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