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Using a wet look sealer is an excellent idea since it can protect and beautify your concrete, flagstones, or paved surfaces. But do you have an idea how long it will last? If you don't, leave this matter to us since we have already thoroughly researched the answer.
Wet look sealers can last between two and five years. However, their longevity will depend upon some factors affecting their performance, such as:
- moisture present on the surface during application
- UV exposure
- ability to adhere to the surface type; porosity of the pavers
- overall quality of the sealer
- substrate's pH level
If you're interested in selecting a long-lasting sealer for your hardscape surface, stay tuned! We'll share what we've learned about wet look sealers and some highly recommended products. You'll not only protect your pavers, but they'll look great, too!
Factors Affecting Wet Look Sealers' Performance
Five-year longevity of a wet look sealer is already worth it, but these factors can affect performance either by lengthening or shortening the lifespan of a wet look sealer.
- The amount of moisture present in the subsurface.
- The exposure of the sealer in a surface abrasion.
- The substrate's location (exposure amount to sun, precipitation, and snow).
- The kind of suface where you use the wet look sealer.
- Another factor is the type and amount of sealer you will be using.
- The substrate's pH level.
- The porosity of the surface where you apply the wet look sealer.
What Are The Two Types Of Wet Look Sealers
We categorize wet look sealers into two types, and both of them provide a low to a high gloss finish.
1. Solvent-based Acrylic Wet Look Sealers
The distinguishing feature of this sealer is making the surface darker to actually look wet. Solvent-based acrylic sealers leave a visible glossy finish from low to high. Moreover, it is the most common type of wet look sealer available.
Solvent-based sealers are:
- easy to use,
- leave a durable finish
- last up to three years,
- and, most importantly, are uncomplicated to maintain.
This wet look sealer is best for unsealed pavers and concrete and those previously sealed with this type. However, solvent-based sealers are not appropriate for slate, flagstones, and red clay brick.
2. Water-based Acrylic Wet Look Sealers
This wet look sealer can produce a low to high gloss finish, but it doesn't darken the surface, unlike the solvent-based. So, if you don't want to darken the surface of your pavers, this is the best choice you can have.
How To Apply Wet Look Sealers To Concrete
Sealing concrete using a wet look sealer is very easy. First, you have to ensure that the area is completely dry. Once dry, apply the first coating. Please leave it to dry for 24 hours, and spread the second coating.
However, before starting the sealing process, you must consider whether you are:
Sealing A New Surface
It is essential to check the sealing instructions from the manufacturers of the paver materials. Since in most cases, pavers must stay unsealed for at least one year. In addition, when it is time to seal the new pavers, make sure to prepare the surface properly.
Resealing A Surface
If you apply a new wet look sealer to previously wet look sealed pavers, apply to a small area first to test the compatibility, especially if you are unsure what type of sealer is currently there. Plus, you must ensure that the surface is spotless and dry since it has been years after the last sealing.
What Are The Best Wet Look Sealers?
How do you define the best, wet look sealer? There are two primary factors that a wet look sealer offers. First, it makes the surface look wet. Second, it provides a glossy sheen to the surface. Most wet look sealers offer only one of those factors, but some offer those two in one product; a gloss and a color enhancement.
Here are the top picks by homeowners and contractors for the best, wet look sealers:
- Armor AR350 Solvent-Based Acrylic Wet Look Concrete Sealer And Paver Sealer
- Black Diamond's Wet Look Natural Stone Sealer
- Endura Seal 100% Acrylic "Wet Look" Semi-Gloss Concrete Sealer
- DuPont Premium High Gloss Color Enriching Sealer
- Eagle Sealer EPS5 Clear Paver Sealer
Below are the different varieties of wet look sealers:
Matte Wet Look Sealers
Manufacturers produce this kind of wet look sealer to enhance the colors of the pavers, making them have an identical appearance to being wet. Matte wet look sealer will not leave behind a film on the surface, and it won't add sheen to the surface.
Low Gloss Wet Look Sealer
The purpose of low gloss wet look sealer is to improve the pavers' color and enhance the surface by giving it a low gloss. This type of sealer is an excellent option if you are looking for an accurate wet look since it makes the original color muted.
High Gloss Wet Look Sealer
This high gloss wet look sealer type is excellent in enhancing the color of the pavers and providing the surface with a high gloss surface.
Low To High Gloss Sealer Without Color Enhancement
If you want your pavers to be glossy but don't want to enhance or change their color, this wet look sealer is the best option you can pick. The best example of this wet look sealer is a water-based sealer. These can add sheen to your surface, but won't change anything about its color.
Due to its easy application and capability to lessen surface deterioration and abrasion, Armor AR350 is the first and top pick of contractors and homeowners. This wet look sealer can last three years on exterior surfaces and approximately seven years on interior surfaces.
Frequently Asked Questions About Sealing
Check these frequently asked questions; it might answer some of the multiple additional questions building up in your mind.
How Long To Stay Off Concrete After Sealing?
You will need to stay off the pavers for 36 hours after sealing. Following the drying recommendations provided by the sealer manufacturer will ensure the pavers absorb and set the sealer properly.
How Long Does Wet Look Sealer Take To Dry?
In most cases, a sealer can dry to touch within one to three hours. But we recommend letting the first coat dry for four hours.
Can You Paint Over Wet Look Sealers?
You can paint over a wet look sealer only if the wet look sealer used is a water-based one. The process is involved, but possible. You will need to sand the top layer, clean it thoroughly, and prime it. The reason why you should do this preparation is to improve the paint's adhesion.
Sanding will help scrape the top layer of the sealed concrete and priming will provide a smooth undercoat. Again, these processes both give the paint better adhesion and absorption.
Should You Apply Sealer with Spray Or Roller?
Depending on the area you are sealing, you can use the spray method for large-scale areas since it will be more efficient and faster. On the other hand, using a paint roller in sealing is more readily available and less expensive. If you want to apply an epoxy floor coating or decorative acrylic sealer, it would be best to use a 1/4-inch roller.
What Type Of Sprayer Should You Use For Applying Sealers?
There are two types of sprayers that you can use in applying wet look sealers. First, a hand pump sprayer is an excellent option for small surface areas and water-based sealers.
Second, we recommend using a low-pressure, high-volume sprayer to any wet look sealer type, and it produces a professional finish surface. You can use paint rollers, but we highly suggest sprayers since you can create better results when using them.
Can Vinegar Remove Concrete Sealers?
For a safer alternative in removing concrete sealer, you can use vinegar. However, it doesn't have the same efficacy as an acrylic concrete sealer remover has, so we still recommend commercial sealer cleaners for effective concrete sealer removal.
Can You Put Too Much Wet Look Sealer On Concrete?
Putting too much amount of wet look sealer on concrete is not advisable. If you do such a thing, anticipate that the air ejected through the surface can not escape and will create bubbles in the surface. Also, the bubbling of a wet look sealer can happen if you apply it in hot weather or if the concrete is exposed to the sun.
Wet look sealers protect your concrete pavers and make them attractively appealing. And considering all the factors that can affect a wet look sealer's performance, it can last five years. But if those factors are mostly good, it can extend more than five years of longevity. To conclude, a wet look sealer is worth every penny.
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