Regardless of the surface type, whether it be a decorative floor inside your home, a covered outdoor patio area, or your driveway, applying some type of concrete sealer is always beneficial. Here are a few reasons why sealing concrete is the way to go:
1. Sealing protects concrete from damage.
There are several reasons why a concrete surface might experience damage. The conditions it’s poured under, settlement, shrinkage, overload, and various other factors can all cause concrete to crack, spall, and flake.
A sealer protects your concrete surface from the various elements that can further contribute to damage. Oil, chemicals, salt, grease, weather exposure, UV rays, and moisture are all big ones. In the winter, when your driveway is covered by a layer of ice, water has the potential to seep below the surface of the concrete. This becomes a problem when that water freezes and expands separating the concrete. Sealer prevents moisture and other elements from seeping below the surface and negatively affecting your concrete surface.
2. Concrete should be sealed to protect from mold and mildew.
Because concrete is a porous material, it has a tendency to absorb moisture. When this moisture doesn’t dry and the surface is left wet for an extended period of time, mildew begins to form and mold begins to grow. You’ll know you have mold growing on your concrete by the greenish color that appears.
When you seal your concrete, you inhibit moisture from penetrating the surface and therefore prevent the development of mold and mildew.
3. Sealing concrete increases its longevity.
Generally speaking, concrete is a long lasting and durable material. Typically, a concrete driveway can last anywhere from 25-30 years unless it becomes damaged. In that case, it will likely need to be replaced sooner.
Sealing your concrete not only ensures your concrete surface is protected, but that it is long lasting. It should also be noted that compared to the cost of replacing a concrete surface, sealing is relatively inexpensive and easy to do–definitely worth a long lasting concrete floor, patio, slab, or driveway.
4. The appearance of the concrete will be improved by sealing.
There is nothing too special about the appearance of concrete–hey, we’ll admit it! Right after concrete is poured, it has a rough look and over time can become discolored, while developing a dingy, old appearance.
Applying a sealer enhances the overall look of concrete. Most sealers keep your concrete looking new, while also smoothing and preserving color. Are you’re planning to stain your concrete surface? Is your concrete surface is indoors where you and your family will be walking barefoot? Will you’ll be placing furniture on your concrete surface and would prefer if it didn’t get scuffed up? Seal.
Most of these 2018 residential concrete trends require sealing for their appearance.
There are so many important reasons to seal your concrete surfaces. If you choose to forego sealing, you should know you’ll likely suffer some of these negative consequences.
Here are the negative consequences you could encounter if you do not seal concrete:
- Like anything that is subject to harsh outdoor elements, (and oil, chemicals, grease, salt, etc) concrete will begin to fail prematurely.
- Oxidation from the sun can begin to break down the concrete causing it to age quicker than normal.
- In colder climates, moisture that penetrates concrete can freeze and thaw continuously causing the concrete to shift, crack, heave or buckle.
- Mold and mildew can build up on concrete that has not been sealed.
Sealing concrete helps to maintain a durable and beautiful concrete surface for years to come.
While we just stressed the importance of sealing concrete for appearance, durability, and longevity, it all starts with a great ready mix. Before you start any concrete project, download our free Perfect Ready Mix Checklist. Your answers to the questions on this checklist will help determine exactly what kind of ready-mix your project requires–the best ready mix as we say/