Why You Should Seal Stamped Concrete
Sealer is key to maintaining beautiful decorative concrete, protecting your investment, and increasing your curb appeal. Sealer acts as a protective topical membrane which repels stains, harmful chemicals and water from penetrating the surface. Applying a sealer annually is recommended for maximum protection of your concrete surface.
Additionally, a sealer will help prevent efflorescence, which is a white, powdery residue that can build-up on the surface.
Sealing stamped concrete can be compared to waxing your car, wearing sunscreen, or spraying Scotchgard on your favorite shirt. A sealer will improve the appearance of stamped concrete, prevent fading caused by UV rays, and protect it from stains and harmful chemicals.
Choosing the Right Sealer
The right sealer will keep your stamped concrete looking great for many years, or rejuvenate an existing stamped surface. We at Blackwater Designer Concrete use Ultra Seal by Con-crete Werks, a highly-recommended product for re-sealing concrete.
We do not recommend using other sealers, as there may be compatibility issues which could result in the sealers not bonding together.
Stamped concrete that has been sealed will have a rich color and glossy sheen if desired. Sealers are available in many different gloss levels, ranging from no-gloss to high-gloss. Want more color? A tinted sealer will further enhance the look of your stamped concrete.
Slip resistant additives are also available for sealer, which are especially useful around a pool.
Basic Steps for Sealing Your Stamped Concrete
- Rinse dirt/debris off stamped concrete surface with a garden hose or pressure washer.
- Apply a small amount of liquid dish soap to surface and scrub with a push broom.
- Rinse well with a garden hose or pressure washer until there is no sign of soapsuds.
- DRY surface completely by using a leaf blower or by waiting 24 hours to air dry. DO NOT APPLY SEALER TO A DAMP/WET SURFACE.
- Once the surface is completely dry, apply the sealer as follows:
- Apply sealer using a 1″ nap roller.
- Apply sealer in approximately 2′ x 4′ sections. This will ensure full coverage without missed spots.
- In general, sealer should be applied when air temperature is above 55 F. Best results will be obtained by applying sealer during cooler temperatures — fall and spring — or before 10 am and after 4 pm in summer months when surface temperatures should be under 90 F.
- A second coat can be applied after the first coat is tack free (not sticky to your touch).
- Your stamped concrete should be resealed every year (more or less depending on other variables such as weather, use/traffic, pets, etc.) to protect your investment. One 5-gallon pail of sealer will cover approximately 1,000 square feet.
Re-Sealing Stamped Concrete
Maintaining the sealer on a stamped concrete surface is a must. For maximum protection, it is recommended to seal after new concrete has cured and re-seal your stamped concrete every year for existing concrete.
At Blackwater Concrete, our goal is to provide personalized service and distinctive ideas, giving each client and project the full value of our collective experience and knowledge. That’s why we’ve developed a maintenance guide for you, our clients, so that your concrete will look as good as new, many years after installation.