Concrete is an extremely versatile material and is used widely for construction worldwide. Today, concrete is among the most popularly used materials and has a wide range of applications; everywhere you look around you, there is concrete. Not only is concrete inexpensive, but it is also strong, robust and durable.
However, concrete is porous and sucks up any liquid or material, which makes it very essential to seal concrete surfaces. It requires maintenance over time and without the use of a sealer, any concrete installation is incomplete. A concrete sealer adds a final layer of protection to your concrete installation, which not only extends the life of the installation but also enhances and preserves its appearance for years to come.
So, what does a concrete sealer really do? Well, a concrete sealer has several benefits. The key advantage of using a concrete floor sealer is that it will make your floor more attractive and also preserve it. Sealing the concrete floor enhances the beauty of the floor by augmenting the color and also adding gloss and shine. Sealing also helps to preserve the decorative treatment by protecting the surface of the floor from stains and abrasions. Some concrete floor sealers protect the floor by penetrating into the floor, while others form a protective film on the concrete surface.
ToughCrete Concrete Sealer is an excellent concrete sealer that offers long-term protection for the concrete surface and also underneath the surface. This is an excellent siloxane concrete sealer that offers superior protection for your garage floor, driveway, patio, or sidewalk. ToughCrete Concrete Sealer penetrates deeply into the concrete surface and gives it up to 10 years of protection from water and salt damage and deterioration.
Not only does the ToughCrete sealer protect your concrete floors so that they are long lasting, but it also helps to enhance the value of your home. You can also use the sealer to protect other concrete installations such as chimneys, cinder blocks, outdoor fireplaces, bricks, pavers, blocks and CMUs. ToughCrete sealer is eco-friendly and safe and has been approved by the Department of Transportation.
If you like your concrete floor to have a wet look, then Armor AR350 acrylic concrete sealer is a great buy. The sealer darkens the concrete surface, giving it an appearance of being wet and instantly refreshes faded and dull surfaces. You can apply Armor AR350 concrete sealer to both exterior and interior concrete surfaces and it can also be used on concrete bricks, natural stone, pavers, and aggregates.
Armor AR350 Acrylic concrete sealer is an excellent choice to seal garage and warehouse floors and also works very well for driveways, pool decks, patios, etc. You can choose from the clear option or the sealer is available in many colors and can be applied easily with a roller or a pump sprayer. The sealer coating is resistant to mold and mildew, efflorescence, exposure to freshwater or saltwater pool systems, UV rays and hot tire pickup.
You can apply Armor AR350 Acrylic concrete sealer to unsealed surfaces of surfaces that have been sealed earlier with a solvent-based acrylic sealer. The easy to apply Armor AR350 sealer is non-yellowing, self-priming and low in maintenance. Armor AR350 sealer is breathable and has unmatched bonding properties and easily lasts between 2 to 5 years. The sealer is resistant to water, chemicals, salt damage, and stains and it can be used on stamped concrete, poured concrete and integrally colored and acid stained concrete also.
This high-quality concrete floor sealer from Ghostshield is an industrial-grade product. It gets into the pores and penetrates the concrete and gives you a clean, smooth surface. Siloxa-Tek 8500 sealer is a mixture of siloxane and silane and repels water and moisture.
The sealer also prevents the collection of moisture, chloride and deicing salts within the concrete and protects the floor from cracking, pitting and spalling. The sealer helps to reduce efflorescence, mold, and mildew. Siloxa-Tek 8500 concrete sealer practically does not produce any VOCs, which makes it safe to use the sealer indoors. The product has also been approved by the transport department.
The sealer is non-slippery and is extremely easy to apply. And, the best part is that the concrete sealer does not change the appearance of your concrete floor and give it a natural look. The sealer can be used on your driveways, patios, garages, pool decks and basements. Overall, Siloxa-Tek 8500 sealer is among the safest concrete floor sealers on the market.
DryWay concrete sealer is a penetrating sealer that penetrates the concrete and seals it, offering long-lasting protection, even from the inside. The sealer is ready to use and is very easy to apply. The concrete sealer is made of silicone caulk that keeps your concrete floors looking new and glossy. It penetrates to around ½ inch of the concrete and ensures that your floor is safe from moisture and stains.
DryWay concrete sealer is quite effective in treating the concrete and helps to prevent molds, algae, corrosion, efflorescence, cracking, pitting, spalling and rebar. It also helps to keep away moisture, salts, oil, and chemicals. DryWay concrete sealer is resistant to heat and UV rays and does not turn yellow, will not peel or wear off. A coat of the concrete sealer offers around 10 years of protection.
EnduraSeal concrete sealer is a 100% acrylic solvent-based sealer that guarantees to protect and beautify any concrete surface. The concrete sealer creates a layer on the concrete and delivers a durable semi-gloss that gives the concrete a wet look. The non-yellowing sealer enhances the look of the concrete surface and protects all types of concrete – colored, stamped, stained aggregate and exposed.
EnduraSeal concrete sealer is very durable and costs significantly lesser than urethane and epoxy sealers. The concrete sealer is suitable for both indoor, as well as outdoor use, on concrete floors, driveways, stairs, and pavements. EnduraSeal concrete sealer is a very user-friendly and affordable concrete sealer that can add gloss and shine to your floors that will last for a very long time.
Masonry Defender concrete sealer is a water-based penetrating sealer that provides long-lasting protection. The sealer has a blend of siloxane and silane and it bonds with the concrete to provide reliable protection against moisture, chloride, salt, deicing chemicals efflorescence, mold, and fungus. Masonry Defender is a non-film forming concrete sealer, which will also not change the color or appearance of the concrete surface.
The sealer provides a non-glossy, invisible coating on the concrete surface that is long-lasting. Masonry Defender concrete sealer provides excellent protection to horizontal and exterior concrete surfaces and is suitable for use on floors, driveways, patios, and sidewalks. The concrete sealer is water-based, eco-friendly and water repellent and it penetrates the concrete to deliver long-lasting protection from water and also prevents pitting and cracking of the surface.
There are broadly two categories of floor sealers – topical sealers and penetrating sealers.
These sealers basically stick to the concrete surface and form a protective layer. If the area has light to moderate traffic, then using a topical sealer is sufficient.
Acrylic sealers work by forming a thin protective film on the surface of the concrete. These are the least expensive types of topical sealers and can be applied using a roller or pump sprayer. These sealers are excellent for enhancing the beauty of stamped, colored or aggregate concrete.
Acrylic sealers are available in water-based, as well as, solvent-based formulations. They are suitable for both interior and exterior concrete surfaces and are best for projects where economy and ease of application are important. These sealers are especially beneficial for fast-tracked projects because acrylic sealers dry very quickly, within one hour of application.
Acrylic sealers are available in various shine levels and generally, solvent-based acrylic sealers augment the colors of the concrete better than the water-based ones. Acrylic sealers provide protection against the penetration of water and chloride; however, they wear much faster compared to epoxy and polyurethane sealers. If you are looking for a good sealer for outdoor use, then solvent-based sealers perform better than water-based ones.
Soft acrylic sealers work well for indoor concrete surfaces; however, they need regular maintenance with many coats of wax or floor finish to prevent heel marks and wear. For best results, you will need to reapply the acrylic sealers every 18-24 months. Also, it is a good idea to buy an acrylic sealer with UV protection, as cheaper products may yellow over time.
These sealers are available in both water-based, as well as, solvent-based formulations and when applied to the concrete surface, they form a high-build protective film. Polyurethane sealers are suitable for use on both interior and exterior concrete surfaces. They are usually used on floors with high traffic and help to prevent abrasion and staining. Polyurethane sealers help to improve the beauty of stamped, aggregate or colored concrete and also concrete countertops.
Polyurethanes are available in several shine levels and provide a transparent and non-yellowing finish. These sealers are almost two times thicker than acrylic sealers and produce a durable abrasion- and chemical-resistant finish. Most of the polyurethane sealers are not resistant to moisture and so there should not be any water present on the concrete surface when you’re applying the sealer.
Epoxy sealers mostly comprise of two components which are usually mixed before the application and when applied to concrete, they form a high-build protective film. They are more durable and are more expensive types of topical sealers. Epoxy sealers are thicker than acrylic and form a strong bond with the concrete floor.
Epoxies are available in 2 forms – clear and pigmented; and, most of the sealers produce a hard, glossy, abrasion-resistant, long-wearing finish. Epoxies are ideal for use on floors that have high traffic, concrete countertops, and cement-based overlays. These sealers are prone to yellowing when exposed to UV rays and so their use is usually limited to interiors.
Epoxy floors will not be damaged by water, grease, oil, etc. and are also abrasion-resistant. However, you may need a slip-resistant coating such as metal or granite chips because the epoxy sealant gets quite slick when it is applied. If applied properly, epoxy sealers can last for many years.
Penetrating sealers include siloxanes, silanes, siliconates, and silicates. These work by penetrating and reacting chemically within the capillaries in the concrete and help to protect the concrete against the penetration of moisture and chemicals. Penetrating sealers are suitable for exterior surfaces made of concrete that are usually exposed to corrosion and damage by freezing and thawing. These sealers are also ideal if you want a natural, matte finish.
Penetrating sealers provide an invisible layer of protection without leaving a shine on the concrete surface or changing the appearance of the surface. In terms of their performance, penetrating sealers offer superior protection against outdoor conditions. Most of the penetrating sealers are breathable and let moisture escape. Just a single coat of the penetrating sealer applied using a pump spray is sufficient to last for up to 20 years.
Using a concrete floor sealer has several advantages such as:
However, to get all these benefits, you must ensure that you select the right sealer for the job. There are hundreds of products available in the market that are suitable for different types of concrete applications and there is no single sealer that is the perfect fit for all jobs. Using the wrong sealer or applying the sealer wrongly can be even worse. It can completely ruin a perfect concrete floor or installation.
Here are some questions that you must ask before choosing the best concrete floor sealer.
What kind of sealers can be used on interior concrete floors?
Typically, sealers that form a protective film on the surface are used for interior concrete floors. However, there are many different types of film-forming sealers and you need to evaluate which is the best one for your particular project.
Is the concrete sealer compatible with my concrete flooring?
You need to determine what the sealer is going to be applied to, whether you will be applying it to a dyed and polished floor, stained concrete or a floor overlay. Ensure that you check with the manufacturer of the sealer to verify that the product is compatible with your concrete floor surface. Some of the sealers may interact with certain types of coloring agents or overlays and cause problems like bleeding, bubbling or blistering.
Which type of sealers will protect my concrete floor from stains or abrasions?
Using a high-build sealer, such as an epoxy or polyurethane that provides good resistance against abrasions and stains, usually provides the best protection to an interior floor and is also easy to maintain, particularly in a high-traffic environment. Usually, soft acrylic sealers need regular maintenance with several coats of wax or floor finish to prevent heel marks and wear.
Are the fumes of concrete sealers toxic?
Typically for interior floors, it is much safer to make use of a water-based sealer rather than a sealer that is solvent-based, especially if the area does not have adequate ventilation. Solvent-based concrete floor sealers are quite flammable and they produce toxic fumes which can be quite hazardous when breathed in. These sealers may also contain VOCs (volatile organic compounds).
The federal government and the local and state agencies have authorized maximum allowable VOC levels and so, it is a good idea to check the VOC content in the sealer and ensure that it does not exceed the acceptable levels.
What type of sheen will the sealer provide on my concrete floor?
If you want your concrete floor to look like polished marble, then it is best to choose a sealer that provides a medium- to a high-gloss shine. Most of the acrylic sealers come in a range of shine levels. If you are not looking for a high shine, then you can make use of a film-forming sealer with a low-gloss or a matte finish.
How long will the sealer last on my concrete floor?
How long the sealer will last on your concrete floor will really depend on the exposure conditions and how well you maintain your floor. Generally, urethane- and epoxy-based sealers deliver good and long-lasting performance and usually last for several years before requiring reapplication. It is a good idea to buy a high-quality sealer even if it is expensive because you don’t want a cheap sealer that will wear away quickly, thereby increasing your costs in the long run.
If you’re thinking about sealing your concrete floor, always ensure that you’re choosing the best concrete floor sealer. However, with so many choices available, things can get rather confusing when deciding which floor sealer to buy. Scroll up to see our reviews of some of the best concrete floor sealers.
Your concrete floor will be incomplete without the application of a sealer. The protective sealer layer is well worth the time, effort and money, as it will not only enhance the appearance of your concrete surface but also protect, preserve and make it last for a very long time. In our article, we have discussed what you should look for when selecting the best concrete floor sealer for your home and we have also reviewed some of the top sealers in the market and this should help you make your decision of the best concrete sealer to buy.