VOCs, or volatile organic compounds, are molecules that evaporate into the surrounding air from organic chemicals with a high vapor pressure. Products with a low VOC have little to no odor, while products with a high VOC will have an intense odor.
Water based products typically have little to no VOC. Water based penetrating concrete sealers will have no VOC, while water based acrylic sealers will have a low VOC (less than 100 VOC). No VOC concrete sealers are considered to be less toxic and environmentally friendly because of the water based formula.
The most common no VOC sealers are concrete densifiers. Concrete densifiers are suspended in water, and often times diluted with more water before applying. They have zero VOC and can easily be applied with a roller or sprayer to interior or exterior concrete. Concrete densifiers chemically react below the surface to form a calcium silicate hydrate (CSH) barrier within the pores in order to decrease the pore size and increase the surface strength. Densifiers help to reduce dusting and deterioration caused by surface abrasion and weak concrete.
Best Concrete Densifiers:
- Armor S2000 Concrete Sealer Review (concentrated)
- Stone Technolgies X-1 Concrete Sealer Review (pre-diluted)
- Ashford Formula Concrete Sealer Review (pre-diluted)
- Armor L3000 Concrete Sealer Review (concentrated)
- Lion Hard Concrete Sealer Review (pre-diluted)
Water based water repellent sealers are low VOC sealers. The VOC content of a water based water repellent sealer is usually less than 100 VOC and has little to no odor. Water repellent sealers chemically react to form a water repellent barrier within the pores that causes water and other liquids to bead off the surface. They help to reduce staining and deterioration caused by the absorption of water, snow and ice, freeze-thaw cycles, and de-icing salts. They also help to reduce mold, mildew, and efflorescence.
Best Water Repellent Sealers:
- Eagle Natural Seal (average 4.0 star review)
- Armor SX5000 WB (average 4.8 star review)
- Siloxane PD Concrete Sealer Review (average 4.5 star review)
- Okon S-20 Concrete Sealer Review (average 4.0 star review)
- Thompson’s Water Seal Concrete Sealer Review (average 3.2 star review)
Water based acrylic sealers are also low VOC concrete sealers. They VOC content of a water based acrylic sealer is usually less than 100 VOC and has little to no odor. Acrylic sealers are designed to enhance concrete with a low to high gloss finish, and protect it against deterioration caused by water absorption and surface abrasion.
Best Water Based Acrylic Sealers:
- Seal-Krete Clear Seal Acrylic Sealer (average 4 star review)
- Armor WB25 Acrylic Sealer (average 4.9 star review)