In the right corner, Acrylic Sealers
By far, the most popular decorative concrete sealers are the Acrylic sealers, which come in both water-based and solvent-based. The Stamp Store’s number #1 selling sealer is SS Specialties Supreme 2500 High Gloss, which is a solvent-based acrylic. However, we carry both water-based (SS Specialties EpoSeal 20 and 38) and solvent-based (SS Specialties Supreme 2500 High Gloss, Supreme 2500 Medium Gloss, Supreme 2500 Plus Medium Gloss and Supreme 3000 High Gloss). All of these sealers can be used both for interior or exterior decorative concrete. Acrylics are considered film formers, ie…they will leave a film on the top of your surface.
For this reason sometimes these are not desired in wet areas, such as swimming pool decks or sidewalks because they do not give you good slip resistance. Unless of course, you add a slip resistance product such as SS Get-A-Grip, or one of our SS Seal-Grips. The life expectancy of an acrylic sealer will depend on UV exposure and chemical exposure. Under normal conditions on an exterior setting, you should get 1 to 3 years life. With an interior job, with proper maintenance, you should be able to get a life expectancy of up to 10 years. SS Cherry Wax is the preferred maintenance wax to prolong the sealer life. If you want to know more about Cherry Wax, we would recommend reading this article, “How to put the Shine on your Concrete Floors.”
In the left corner, Repellents
Siloxane/Silane Repellents are considered penetrating sealer’s. Unlike the acrylic sealer, they do not leave a film on the surface and are both water-based and solvent-based.
When you have a wet surface these Repellents such as SS Specialties Repel Guard SB-20, SS Repel Block WB-75 and SS Repel Guard 40 perform very well. They leave the profile of the concrete thus helping with slip resistant. Of course this greatly depends on the profile of your concrete as well. A tightly troweled sidewalk will more than likely always remain slick.
All of SS Specialties Repellents are not recommended for driveways because of the hot tire pick up, leaving homeowners disappointed. This repellent is better for foot traffic. One of the best qualities is the life expectancy of this product, which is 5 to 7 years before resealing will be necessary. (Note: you cannot put an acrylic over this product until it has been ground off.) If you have a porch that is covered or say a gardening or utilities room, SS Repellents are perfect choices.
Winner: Your choice!
Both sealer types are winners. The key is picking the right one for the job and knowing what their strengths are.
Still having a hard time understanding which sealers to use? Don’t hesitate to bounce off ideas and gather information from our staff by calling The Stamp Store at 888-848-0059. We are here to help and more than likely, we have an SS Specialties product that will be perfect for your next project.