There are a few different types of sealers that can be used to seal pavers. The best paver sealer for your pavers will depend on several factors including your reason for sealing, what you want your pavers to look like once sealed, and the current condition of the pavers.
There are two primary categories of paver sealers: penetrating paver sealers and acrylic sealers.
Penetrating Paver Sealers
There are two types of penetrating sealers that can be used to seal pavers. The first time is a concrete densifier and the second is a water repellent sealer.
- Concrete densifiers, or silicate sealers, are designed to increase the strength and density of the pavers by forming a calcium silicate hydrate structure within the pores. They are great sealers to use on pavers experiencing constant dusting or deterioration caused by surface abrasion. Thin, light coats of a lithium silicate should be applied to avoid over application and crystal formation on the surface.
- Water repellent sealers are designed to reduce surface water absorption and deterioration caused by that such as cracking, spalling, pitting, and cracking. Water repellent sealers will also help to reduce the formation of mold, mildew, and efflorescence on the surface. The best type of water repellent sealer to use on pavers is a Silane-Siloxane water repellent sealer. This type of water repellent provides the best level of protection above and below the surface. Water repellent surfaces can be applied to unsealed pavers, and pavers previously sealed with a silicate concrete densifier.
Penetrating sealers won’t change the look or color of the pavers. Pavers sealed with a penetrating sealer will look exactly as they did before being sealed. They work entirely below the surface in the pores, and will not leave behind a visible surface film. If you want a wet look or high gloss finish, you need an acrylic sealer.
Wet Look and High Gloss Paver Sealers
Wet look and high gloss paver sealers are acrylic sealers. Acrylic sealers are designed to not only enhance pavers, but protect them with a low to high gloss surface film. Under the category of acrylic sealers there are water based and solvent based acrylic sealers. To learn about the differences in detail, please view our Acrylic Sealers article.
Water based acrylic sealers will provide a low to high gloss finish without darkening the surface of the pavers, while solvent based acrylic sealers will provide a low to high gloss finish and darken the pavers to make them look wet.
- Best Water Based Acrylic Sealers:
- Best Solvent Based Acrylic Sealers:
How to Choose the Best Paver Sealer
Still not sure which is the best paver sealer to use based off of reviews? Let us help. Here are a few common questions that can help you find the best sealer for your pavers:
- Do you like the look of your unsealed pavers and want to keep them looking that way? If yes, you want a Silane-Siloxane water repellent sealer.
- Do you want a wet look finish? If yes, you want a solvent based acrylic sealer.
- Do you want a high gloss finish? If yes, you want an acrylic sealer.
- Are you having issues with dusting and deterioration? You want a lithium silicate densifier or an acrylic sealer. Which is best will depend on whether or not you want to keep your pavers looking unsealed, or would prefer a low gloss, wet look, or high gloss finish.
- Are you having issues with staining, mold, or efflorescence? You want a Silane-Siloxane water repellent sealer or an acrylic sealer. Which is best will depend on whether or not you want to keep your pavers looking unsealed, or would prefer a low gloss, wet look, or high gloss finish.
Best Paver Sealers for Resealing Pavers
If your pavers are currently sealed, the sealer you have down will determine what you can put over them. Here are the types of sealers you should use based on what your pavers are currently sealed with:
- Silicate Sealer: If your pavers are currently sealed with a silicate sealer you can re-coat with a water repellent sealer or an acrylic sealer.
- Water Repellent Sealer: If your pavers are currently sealed with a water repellent sealer, you can re-coat with a solvent based water repellent sealer or a solvent based acrylic sealer. You can’t apply water based products over a water repellent sealer because the sealer will repel the water based product. The only time you can apply a water based sealer over pavers previously sealed with a water repellent is if it has been 7-10 years and the original water repellent has been completely removed.
- Acrylic Sealer: If your pavers are currently sealed with a water based acrylic sealer they need to be re-coated with a water based acrylic sealer. If your pavers are currently sealed with a solvent based acrylic sealer, they need to be re-coated with a solvent based acrylic sealer. You can’t put a water based acrylic over a solvent based, or a solvent based over a water because the solvents will attack the water based resins resulting in coating failure.