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How to Seal Concrete Surfaces — Tips and Insights

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Concrete surfaces eventually absorb water or other forms of liquid spilled on them because concrete is porous. The downside is that you may end up with an unsightly stain that is difficult to get rid of. This can be unpleasant, especially if it is indoors, but it can be prevented. The solution is to seal the concrete with a surface coating sealer, which forms a film or physical barrier between the surface and potential stains.

Types of concrete sealers

The quality and appearance of the concrete surface depends on the type of sealer used. Concrete sealers fall into two broad categories, namely penetrating sealers and topical sealers.

  • Penetrating sealers go through the surface and enter the pores in the concrete. They then initiate a chemical reaction that creates tenacious adhesion to the concrete so that it hardens and strengthens it. Most penetrating sealers are invisible. At Safe Surface, our Enhance Satin is a premium, non-slip concrete sealer that is highly durable, enhances colour and produces a satin finish.
  • Topical sealers form a protective layer when they are sprayed, rolled or spread on concrete, and they adhere to the surface when dry.

Preparing the surface

Regardless of the type of concrete sealer you wish to use, the surface must be thoroughly prepared to achieve the best results. Damaged concrete should first be repaired, and if the concrete is freshly installed, allow at least one month for it to set completely before applying a sealer.

Sweep and mop the surface thoroughly to remove any dirt. Outdoor surfaces may require scrubbing or pressure washing to ensure that it is very clean. If you are applying a topical sealer, you may need to sand the surface until it is very smooth so that the sealer can adhere to the concrete.

The next step is to remove any oil or grease on the concrete with a degreaser. Allow about 24 hours after degreasing for the surface to dry completely.

Applying the sealer

It is advisable to read the manufacturer’s instructions carefully before applying any sealer. Painter’s tape should be applied all along the edges of the concrete to prevent the sealer from accidentally getting to the surface of the wall. Some professionals recommend filling a paint tray with the sealer and applying it with a roller brush, while others prefer to apply the sealer with a spray gun.

Commence the application of the sealer from the far end of the room and gradually work towards the exit so that you don’t step on the surface of the treated concrete on your way out. Give it another 12 to 24 hours to dry.

Conclusion

Safe Surface non-slip concrete sealer is enhanced to promote very low dirt pickup so that treated areas are easy to maintain. You can remove most stains without detergents, and damaged areas can be recoated without grinding or stripping.

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