Concrete Driveway Sealers – Industrial Concrete Sealers for Your Driveway That Stand the Test of Time
For concrete driveway sealers you can count on to protect your poured or stamped concrete driveway, look to the solvent and water based concrete driveway sealers of Foundation Armor in a variety of finishes from wet look, to matte, to natural look concrete driveway sealers
When it comes to concrete driveway sealers, nothing matters more than buying a high-quality, industrial grade, non-recycled resin, concrete driveway sealer. No other single location at your home or business takes a beating more than your concrete driveway, that means you need a tough concrete sealer to protect your driveway from a variety of punishing issues. Whether you have a poured concrete driveway or a stamped concrete driveway, with, or without coloration one thing is for sure, you need to buy the right product the first time because getting it wrong and having to remove a poorly performing concrete driveway sealer is simply not an option, it’s too time consuming, expensive, and aggravating to do so.
Concrete Driveway Sealers – You Need Industrial Grade Concrete Driveway Sealers to Protect Against a Variety of Extreme Conditions Your Concrete Driveway Faces Every Day
Concrete driveway sealers can protect your driveway from surface abrasion, such as foot traffic and vehicle traffic that can quickly wear down the color of the concrete. Concrete driveways will also require expansion joints which need to be cleaned and maintained. The best way to reduce damage and deterioration to your poured or stamped concrete driveway, and protect it against damage and fading, is to use a high-quality concrete driveway sealer. There are many benefits to sealing your stamped concrete:
- Concrete driveway sealers make your driveway more resistant to the damaging effects of water absorption, including cracking, spalling, and freeze-thaw cycles
- Concrete driveway sealers make your driveway more resistant to the growth of mold and mildew, and the formation of efflorescence
- Concrete driveway sealers make your driveway more resistant to damage and deterioration caused by foot and vehicle traffic, and surface abrasion
- Concrete driveway sealers make your driveway easier to clean, and easier to keep clean
- Concrete driveway sealers make your driveway less susceptible to fading
When it comes to choosing a concrete sealer for your driveway there are a few different concrete sealers you can choose from. The best concrete sealer for your driveway will depend on several factors including:
- Is your poured or stamped concrete driveway colored?
- Is your concrete driveway currently sealed?
- What do you want your concrete driveway to look like once sealed?
- What do you need the concrete driveway sealer to offer in terms of performance?
If your concrete driveway is currently colored, it likely has a sealer on it, or was previously sealed. Most concrete installers will apply a cure and seal over the surface to help the concrete properly cure, and to protect the color and prevent fading. When it comes to cure and seals, most installers will use a water based acrylic sealer or a solvent based acrylic sealer. If a water based acrylic sealer was used, you want to reseal with a water based acrylic sealer; if a solvent based acrylic sealer was used you want to reseal with a solvent based acrylic sealer. If you are unsure, it is best to check with your installer, but if you aren’t able to get in touch with them and you can visibly see a film on the surface, you can run a simple Xylene test. Using a roller, simply roller over the visible coating for about 30-60 seconds or until the coating gets tacky. Roll out and let dry. If the coating looks the same, or better the next day then there is currently a solvent based acrylic sealer down. If the coating turns white and delaminates, then there is a water based acrylic sealer down. If your concrete is not colored, but has a visible surface film, then you want to run the same xylene test, regardless of if the concrete driveway is colored.
There are a few different types of sealers that can be applied to your concrete driveway, each offers a specific look and provides specific benefits.
Natural looking penetrating concrete driveway sealer – If your concrete driveway is unsealed, and has not been colored, you can use a penetrating Silane-Siloxane sealer, like the Armor SX5000 WB or Armor SX5000. These types of water repellent sealers are designed to reduce the absorption of surface water and reduce deterioration caused by surface abrasion. Concrete driveways that are sealed with a penetrating sealer will look exactly as they did before being sealed. Penetrating sealers are great if you are looking to seal your concrete driveway, but don’t want to maintain a coating. They help to reduce staining, cracking, spalling, pitting, freeze thaw damage, and the growth of mold and mildew. If you decide to apply a penetrating sealer it is important to understand that the surface of the concrete driveway is still exposed, therefore staining, damage, and deterioration can still occur. If you need a sealer that can stop oil stains, hot tire pickup, and deterioration caused by surface traction, then penetrating sealers are not the best option for your concrete driveway sealer. Instead, you want to consider a water based acrylic sealer or a solvent based acrylic sealer as your concrete driveway sealer.
Matte wet look concrete driveway sealer that will slightly enhance the color – If you want the benefits of a penetrating concrete driveway sealer, but also want a very slight color enhancement, then a matte wet look sealer like the Armor WL550 is a great option. It can only be applied to unsealed concrete, and should be tested if applied to colored concrete simply because most colored concrete surfaces have been sealed with an acrylic sealer at some point. If you have a colored stamped concrete driveway but it has never been sealed, you can use a penetrating sealer but because they don’t offer a protective surface film, you won’t have protection against fading caused by surface abrasion. Matte wet look sealers are penetrating concrete sealers and behave as such, which means they are designed to reduce staining, deterioration, and mold growth, but not stop it. To stop staining, deterioration, and mold growth, and fading, a water based acrylic sealer or solvent based acrylic sealer would be a better alternative as your concrete driveway sealer.
Low to high gloss concrete driveway sealer that enhances the surface to make it look wet – The best way to achieve a low to high gloss wet look is with a solvent based acrylic concrete driveway sealer. Solvent based acrylic sealers are designed to darken the color to give the concrete a similar appearance to being wet, while also enhancing it with a protective low to high gloss surface film. The surface film left behind by the acrylic is designed to protect the concrete driveway against staining, deterioration caused by surface abrasion, growth of mold and mildew on the concrete, and color fading. The coating is designed to take the abuse for the concrete driveway, helping to extend the life of the concrete. The downfall to acrylic sealers is that they need to be resealed every 1-2 years. The harder the sealer needs to work, the faster it will break down. The benefit to solvent based acrylic sealers is that you simply need to apply a fresh coat to a clean and dry surface when it comes time to recoat. Solvent based acrylic sealers are easy to apply, maintain, and reseal.
Low to high gloss concrete driveway sealer that will not darken or enhance the color – If you want a low to high gloss surface film, but want minimal color enhancement, water based acrylic concrete driveway sealers are the best option. They offer many of the same benefits as solvent based acrylic sealers because they too leave behind a protective surface film. Water based acrylic sealers are very popular simply because they have low to no odor, making them popular for applications where odor is a concern. The life and performance of water-based acrylics is very similar to that of solvent based acrylics, but when it comes to repairing and maintaining a water based acrylic concrete driveway sealer, it requires a little more work. Often you will need to remove the old acrylic sealer before recoating in order for the acrylic to properly bond to the driveway surface.
What is the best choice for my concrete driveway sealer, a solvent based or a water based sealer?
When it comes to choosing between a water based concrete driveway sealer and a solvent base concrete driveway sealer, there are a few things to consider:
- Water based concrete driveway sealers have little to no odor, while solvent based concrete sealers have an odor that can take anywhere from a couple of hours to a couple of days to fully dissipate.
- Water based concrete driveway sealers can be applied with a traditional pump sprayer or a roller, while solvent based acrylic sealers need to be applied with a solvent or acetone resistant sprayer and rollers. Application tools are slightly higher in cost with solvent based application tools than they are with water based application tools.
- Water based concrete driveway sealers require a soap and water clean-up, while solvent based acrylic sealers typically require a solvent or acetone cleaner, like Xylene
When it comes to penetrating concrete driveway sealers, the above differences are the primary differences between water and solvent based sealers. Most prefer water based penetrating sealers because they are easy to apply, easy to clean-up, and have little to no odor. Water based and solvent based penetrating sealers offer the same life and performance, so it really comes down to personal preference and comfort level.
While the benefits of using a water-based sealer seem significantly higher when it comes to choosing a sealer, there are a few factors that make solvent based acrylic sealers slightly more attractive than water based. Here are a few differences between solvent and water based acrylic sealers:
- Water based acrylic sealers slightly enhance the color of the concrete driveway while solvent based acrylic sealers dramatically enhance the color of the concrete driveway
- If a problem arises with an acrylic sealer such as white spots, hazing, or bubbles, solvent based acrylic sealers can be easily repaired with Xylene or the Armor Blush Repair, while water based acrylic sealers typically have to be removed and reapplied to your driveway
- When it comes time to reapply a solvent based acrylic sealer to your concrete driveway, you simply apply a fresh coat to a clean and dry surface. When it comes time to reapply a water based acrylic sealer, you will need to screen scuff the surface or remove the old acrylic before applying a fresh coat.
Concrete driveway sealers – What are the main differences between a penetrating sealer and an acrylic sealer for stamped concrete?
In short, a penetrating sealer works entirely below the surface and will leave the surface of the poured stamped concrete fully exposed, and an acrylic sealer leaves behind a protective surface film that will keep the surface of your concrete driveway fully protected. Penetrating concrete sealers are best if you want some level of protection while maintaining the natural look of your concrete driveway, and acrylic sealers are best if you want complete and total protection while also enhancing the look of the poured or stamped concrete driveway
Concrete driveway sealers – What to do if your stamped or poured concrete driveway is faded?
When poured or stamped concrete is first installed, it is beautiful, vibrant, and stunning. If left unsealed, or if the sealer starts to break down, the concrete driveway can start to lose its luster and have a dull and dingy appearance. The best way to bring new life to old and faded concrete driveways is with an acrylic sealer. A water based acrylic sealer will offer a low to high gloss finish with minimal color enhancement, and a solvent based acrylic sealer will offer a low to high gloss finish with maximum color enhancement to your concrete driveway. If you know your concrete driveway needs to be sealed but are unsure which is best, consider applying a sample of each to a test spot to see exactly what each type of sealer will look on your concrete driveway.
Concrete driveway Sealers – How do you seal a poured or stamped concrete driveway?
Sealing a concrete driveway is a fairly easy process. Penetrating concrete driveway sealers can be applied with a pump sprayer, and acrylic concrete driveway sealers can be applied with a pump sprayer or roller. There are a few things to consider when applying sealer to your concrete driveway:
- Stamped concrete has high and low areas so it is important that you don’t allow sealer to build up in the low areas. Roll out any areas that have puddled immediately before the sealers are allowed to dry or cure. If a penetrating sealer for your concrete driveway is allowed to puddle, you can end up with dark spots, and if an acrylic sealer is allowed to puddle you will end up with delamination, or coating failure.
- Concrete driveways have expansion joints, so you want to follow the same precautions as mentioned above, ensuring you are mindful of the amount of material applied so that you don’t run into issues with over application of puddling. If you plan on using a concrete joint filler for your expansion joints, or if you have concrete joint filler already installed, you need to verify that there aren’t any compatibility issues between the joint filler and the concrete driveway sealer.
- When it comes to concrete driveway sealers, pump sprayers will provide even coverage and allow for optimal square footage, making it a preferred application method. Rollers can be used but it is important to make sure that driveway sealer material is evenly applied throughout the concrete surface. If acrylic concrete driveway sealers are not evenly applied you will notice a variation in color and gloss, which will require an additional coat to correct.
- Do not apply a concrete driveway sealer in the early morning, or in the middle of the day. The best time to apply a poured or stamped concrete driveway sealer is in the late afternoon, or early evening when the air and surface temperatures are declining. When you apply a concrete sealer in the morning, or middle of the day, you run the risk of premature sealer evaporation, solvent pop (bubbles), drying out, and sealer or coating failure. Most risks associated with application can be avoided if the concrete sealer is applied later in the day.
- Make sure the concrete driveway has been properly cleaned and allowed to dry for at least 24 hours before sealing. If you apply a concrete driveway sealer to dirty concrete, stains and impurities will become enhanced, and be locked into the concrete surface. If you apply a concrete driveway sealer to wet concrete, dark spots can form, and the sealer could fail. Preparation is one of the most important steps when it comes to sealing your concrete driveway.
- Make sure that if you are resealing your concrete driveway, the new concrete driveway sealer is compatible with the old concrete sealer. If the new sealer is not compatible with the old sealer, you run the risk of both coatings failing. (if you have any questions on compatibility, test a spot, or call and speak to one of our concrete driveway sealer technicians directly and they can walk you through how to check for compatibility)
How often do you need to apply a concrete driveway sealer?
How often you need to apply concrete driveway sealer will depend on the type of concrete sealer used, the amount of material applied, the porosity of the concrete, and how hard the sealer needs to work. The longest lasting sealer for a concrete driveway is a penetrating concrete sealer like the Armor SX5000 and Armor SX5000 WB. These sealers last for up to 7-10 years before the need to be resealed. They last longer than acrylic sealers on concrete driveways because they don’t leave behind a surface film and won’t break down from surface abrasion. They are a great preventative concrete driveway sealer, but to achieve complete protection, only an acrylic, not penetrative, concrete driveway sealer should be used. Acrylic sealers last for up to 1-3 years but typically need to be resealed every 1-2 years.
How do I know if a concrete driveway sealer, or any concrete sealer for that matter, is currently applied to my poured or stamped concrete driveway?
If you aren’t sure that a concrete driveway sealer is already applied to your poured or stamped concrete driveway, there are a few different things that can be done to determine if it is sealed, and what type of sealer is down. First, look at the concrete driveway to see if you notice a visible surface film. It may be a matte, low gloss, or high gloss concrete finish. If you notice a visible surface film on your driveway, the concrete is likely sealed with an acrylic sealer for concrete driveways. To determine which type of acrylic concrete sealer you have down, you want to use the Xylene test mentioned earlier in this article. If you don’t notice a surface film, it doesn’t necessarily mean that your concrete driveway isn’t sealed, It could have been sealed with a penetrating concrete driveway sealer, or there may be acrylic resin in the pores of the concrete driveway. You want to run a few other tests to determine if it is safe to seal your concrete driveway, so you don’t have costly or time-consuming issues once you get started. Take a cup of water and spread it across the surface. If the water instantly absorbs everywhere the water touched, continue the test on other parts of the concrete. If water instantly absorbs throughout the entire concrete driveway surface, you can consider the poured or stamped concrete unsealed. If you spread the water and notice certain areas of the concrete driveway are dry, of if the water takes a long time to absorb, you either have old acrylic resin in the pores, or a penetrating concrete driveway sealer on the surface. If you recently purchased the house and don’t know if the concrete driveway was ever sealed, it is best to contact a Foundation Armor technician so they can help with choosing the best concrete sealer for your poured or stamped concrete driveway.
Applying concrete driveway sealer – What is the best way to clean a poured or stamped concrete driveway?
To ensure the best adhesion of your concrete driveway sealer, you should clean the concrete driveway before application and the best way to clean a poured or stamped concrete driveway is with a pressure washer. Heated pressure washers are always best, but those aren’t always available. While pressure washing alone is typically enough, a mild concrete cleaner like the Armor MSC100 can be used for extra cleaning power. For concrete driveways that have stains, it is best to spot treat the stains with the appropriate cleaner before cleaning. If you use a spot cleaner that contains acid, be sure to use a PH balancer in those areas to restore the PH of the concrete before sealing.
Concrete driveway sealer – Can I add color to my concrete driveway during the sealing process?
When stamped concrete is originally installed, most stamped concrete companies will integrally color the concrete before laying it out. Other methods include applying a stain or dye to the concrete after it has been poured or stamped. Most concrete companies have their own methods, techniques, and product preferences when it comes to coloring concrete. Concrete stamping is an art and varies from company to company. If your concrete has been down for a while and you are looking to recolor your concrete, there are a few different things that can be done to achieve a color:
- You can use a concrete acid or dye to stain your concrete, then enhance and protect it with an acrylic concrete sealer
- You can add an Armor Semi-Transparent Color pack to your solvent based acrylic concrete sealer before applying to give the concrete sealer a semi-transparent brown or gray tint
- You can add an Armor Opaque Color Pack to your solvent based acrylic sealer before applying to give the concrete driveway sealer an opaque paint-like finish.
Concrete driveway sealer can help address common issues with concrete driveways
Concrete Driveway Sealer & Cracking – Stress cracks are typically prevented with expansion joints, but not all cracks are formed from stress. Cracks, spalling, and pitting can be caused by water absorption and freeze-thaw cycles. Penetrating concrete driveway sealers will reduce water absorption, and acrylic concrete driveway sealers will stop water absorption. While penetrating sealers are appropriate in most applications, acrylic sealers are a better option in applications such as concrete driveway sealing that require the most amount of protection possible from a sealer.
Concrete Driveway Sealer & Hot Tire Pick-Up – Hot tire pickup can be stopped with the use of a high-quality concrete driveway sealer such as an acrylic concrete sealer. If your current acrylic sealer is experiencing hot tire pickup it is best to remove the old concrete driveway sealer. If you attempt to apply a new acrylic sealer over an acrylic sealer that is experiencing adhesion issues, the new sealer will simply come up with the old. Removing the old acrylic sealer will allow you to start fresh and apply an acrylic sealer that is resistant to hot tire pickup.
Concrete Driveway Sealer & Oil Stains – Oil stains can’t be prevented with a penetrating sealer, but they can be stopped with an acrylic sealer. Acrylic sealers don’t offer a lot of resistance to oil, but if the oil is cleaned up immediately, the concrete will remain protected against staining and the acrylic sealer won’t be harmed. If oil is left on the acrylic sealer for a period of time, additional cleaning and repair may be required because eventually the oil will break down the acrylic sealer.
Concrete Driveway Sealer & Concrete Surface Deterioration – Penetrating sealers help to reduce deterioration of your concrete driveway caused by water absorption, and acrylic sealers help to stop concrete deterioration caused by water absorption and surface abrasion. The best way to keep your concrete driveway protected against deterioration is to seal it with an appropriate concrete driveway sealer, and to further keep up on your concrete sealer reapplications.
Concrete Driveway Sealer & Mold Growth – Penetrating sealers and acrylic sealers help to reduce mold growth on concrete driveways by forcing the water to stay closer to the surface, and therefore evaporate faster. By reducing standing water on the concrete surface, the growth of mold and mildew is also reduced.
Concrete Driveway Sealers – Zero Compromise Quality – Virgin, Non-Recycled Resins, Make a difference in the Finish and Longevity of Your Concrete Driveway Surface
Not all concrete driveway sealers are created equal. At Foundation Armor we painstakingly formulate our line of concrete driveway sealers to the most demanding of specifications. It’s why all our water based and solvent based concrete sealers, from those used on concrete driveways, to patio and walkway pavers, to stamped concrete walkways, pool decks and patios, to those used on warehouse floors and other industrial applications such as polished concrete floors, are premium, industrial grade concrete sealers. Simply put, we manufacture one formula for each application type and finish, the best. Whether you are a homeowner, commercial property owner, general contractor, or facility manager, our concrete sealers will perform for years to come because they are engineered, formulated, and manufactured to stand the test of time in the most environmentally demanding, and heavily trafficked areas of your home of business. Why do our concrete driveway sealers outperform many others in the field and last longer and stay truer to color? You got it, Zero Compromise Quality.
Our concrete driveway sealers are formulated to the highest standards because we understand you don’t want this going wrong, having to strip and reapply concrete sealer, especially those formulated for concrete driveways, can be a messy, time consuming, and expensive job, so the formula is critical in making a sealer that is consistent, will stand the test of time, won’t yellow or discolor in short order, and won’t require an immediate strip and reseal. One of the key components that only a few manufacturers use, less even mention, are the use of virgin resins, also known as non-recycled resins. We use the most pure, virgin resins in our formulations so that our sealers stand the test of time and won’t yellow or discolor as you often see on concrete surfaces. Many concrete driveway sealers that provide products in the lower end of the market to meet price points some customers require, have to use recycled resins to lower the cost, if you are on a budget and a little risk is worth the savings, than these products can be a good option. If you want to get a finish that is the most durable, and true to color, the use of virgin resins is critical, recycled resins although inexpensive, have imperfections in the formulation that lend them to greater deviations in these metrics. For those who want to have a premium finish, one that they can be proud of and will stand the test of time, choose a concrete driveway sealer that is formulated with virgin, non-recycled resins.
PROTECT IT WITH FOUNDATION ARMOR
Industrial, Professional Grade Concrete Sealers & Coatings – Foundation Armor Protects Your Concrete, and You, With Zero Compromise Quality and an Industry Leading Customer First Customer Service Policy!
Whether in need of a wet look concrete sealer, any other sealer, for your concrete driveway, or a concrete coating or maintenance product, you can rest assured knowing that Foundation Armor is protecting not only your concrete, but you, your family, and your business as well. Foundation Armor is a multi-generational family owned and operated industrial concrete sealer and coating manufacturer, but beyond that we are just like you, and we thrive on providing everyone from homeowners to commercial property owners and managers the same high-quality products and services, we don’t have low grade anything in our portfolio, and that incudes customer service. Our customer first policy drives all our decision making and concrete sealer product development at Foundation Armor Our brand very closely aligns with our values, and represents honesty, quality, and reliability. In every conversation, our priority is to provide our customers with the information they need to make the best purchasing decision for their project, even if that solution is one, we can’t provide. Your home, family or corporate is one of the largest investments you will ever make, and we are here to help you protect it, elevate it, enjoy it, and help it work for you, better.