After a concrete pouring project is completed, you may want to protect your surface and add some finish to the product. A concrete sealer is your best proactive solution. The job of a concrete sealer is to provide a level of protection against weather conditions, corrosion, and abrasions. Protecting both surface and the porous nature of concrete. Concrete sealers are not only for preventative measure, it can also provide a variety of finishes. Ranging from matte, gloss, high gloss, invisible or tinted. It is in your best interest to look a little deeper into the varieties of sealers available.
What to look for in a sealer
A concrete sealer should have the following qualities, easy application and maintenance, low vapor/odor, quick drying time, longevity and of course a range of protective qualities.
A sealer will help protect against discoloration, mold, water damage/moisture, corrosion, stains, basic wear and tear, scrapes/scratches, chemical damage, and spalling.
Three best concrete sealers
Acrylics – indoor and outdoor concrete pouring project, great for patios or driveways
Acrylic concrete sealers can be found in both water based and solvent based solutions. Once applied to the area the water evaporates and the remaining particles are left on the surface. Acrylic sealers provide a thin protective coating. Indoor benefit more from water based acrylic sealer. The best acrylic solution for outdoor surfaces would be solvent based. Applying a solvent based solution is best in a well-ventilated area due to its potent vapor. The main difference between water and solvent base is the type of finish it gives off once it has dried.
Penetrating sealer- outdoor concrete pouring project, exterior surfaces that are exposed to harsh weather conditions
Penetrating sealers protect against water or moisture as well as de-icing solutions without changing the appearance of the concrete surface. Penetrating sealers protect the surface from within by penetrating concrete pores. Preventing corrosion and freeze-thaw. Freeze-thaw occurs when water seeps through and expands due to cold climate conditions. Penetrating sealers also provide a slip-resistant surface due to rain, ice, or snow. Great for patios, walk-ways, and driveways.
Polyurethanes- both indoor and outdoor concrete pouring project, especially since it is environmentally friendly
Polyurethanes produce a high protective tolerance for concrete surfaces. Providing protection from scratches, scuffs, scrapes, stains, and chemicals. Similar to acrylic sealers, polyurethanes are available in both water and solvent based solutions. Great for enhancing the appearance of any concrete surface with the benefit of being low maintenance.
There is an abundant amount of sealers on the market. Deciding on which is best to use can be nerve wracking. Most of the information is presented on the product labels. As long as you read them carefully and apply them according to the recommendations you should be good to go. Hopefully, the information presented above gave a good foundation for what you need to look for to complete your concrete project. There is an abundant amount of information on sealers, if there is a question or concern that has not been covered and you would like to learn more, ask the concrete pouring professionals at Stouffville Mobile Redimix.