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Sealer Choice

Sealer Choice

, by Kate Williams, 3 min reading time

Choosing the right sealer for your application is nearly as important as deciding that you really do need to protect your pavers by sealing them.

Sealer choice is determined firstly by the level of protection you want to achieve and then by the type of masonry from which your pavers are made.

Level of Protection

You should choose a sealer based on the highest level of protection you want to achieve. You can work this out by answering a few simple questions about your pavers, their situation and the likely service conditions to which they will be exposed.

Typical questions you could ask would be as follows:

  • Are the pavers exposed to the weather?
  • Are the pavers likely to be wet for any length of time?
  • Are the pavers shaded or are they laid on a site that is protected from wind but not from rain?
  • Do you know if your soil contains a lot of salt?
  • Are my pavers made of dry pressed concrete?
  • Are my pavers laid around a swimming pool?

If you answer yes to any of these questions you should consider using a water repellent sealer on your pavers.

  • Is the paved area a patio?
  • Will I be entertaining in this area?
  • Is the BBQ on the paved area?
  • Is it likely/possible that food and/or drink will be spilled on the pavers?
  • Is the paved area a driveway?
  • Are there a lot of trees in the immediate surrounds?
  • Do any of the questions in the first section apply?

If you answer yes to any of these questions, you should consider using a stain and water repellent sealer.

NB As stated above you should base your choice on the highest level of protection you want to achieve. It follows that if you want to protect against mould growth, efflorescence and staining by food and drink, you should chose Protectaseal.

You could also consider whether you want to change the gloss level of the surface and/or if you don’t want the surface to be slippery when wet. Tech-Dry sealers do not change the gloss level of the pavers and they don’t change the slip resistance of paver surface.

Type of masonry from which your pavers are made

Once you have determined whether to use a water repellent or a stain & water repellent sealer on your project, you will need to decide whether you use a water based or solvent based version to give you the best long term result.

As a rule of thumb, solvent borne sealers tend to give better penetration into the harder (and denser) paving products such as hard natural stones and the denser wet-cast concrete pavers. Generally, clay bricks would also be sealed with a solvent borne sealer. Solvents used in today’s generation of sealers are much less virulent than those used some years ago. Although there is a small amount of hydrocarbon solvent in each of the solvent based sealers, the bulk of the solvent in today’s products is alcohol based. These products are safe to use provided the user follows the manufacturer’s directions for handling and use and that adequate ventilation is provided during application. Material safety data sheets are available to users on request.

Water borne sealers perform best on more porous material such as dry pressed concrete pavers, reconstituted stone, and some wet-cast concrete pavers.

Both types of sealer are relatively easy to use whether you be an experienced tradesperson or a DIY enthusiast. Ace Waterproofing can supply comprehensive product information sheets that contain application instructions for all Tech-Dry sealers.

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