Sealers are critically important for protecting stonework. They cover a range of issues with different types of stone in different environments. It’s worth checking out the best sealers for your stonework, because they’ll reduce maintenance and repair costs as well as making sure your natural stone always looks its best.

Sealers basics

Sealers (aka sealants or impregnators) provide stone surfaces with an invisible protective barrier that prevents moisture penetration into the subsurface of the stone. This prevents staining and makes cleaning easier. The most common indoor culprits are tea, coffee, wine, cooking oils, grease & food. In outdoor areas biological agents such as bark, leaves, bird droppings may stain paved areas. The sealers add both protection and appearance, as well as making stone much easier to clean.

Sealers and types of stone

All types of stone benefit from sealers. The different types of stone, however, have different needs.

Note - When applying sealers:

  • When using any type of sealer on natural stone, first conduct tests on either a sample piece or a small section of the surface that is out of sight, to see the result. If you’re happy with the effect, you can proceed.
  • Prior to applying sealer, thoroughly clean the stonework. The risk is that using a sealer will also seal in any existing blemishes. If the surface is noticeably marked or stained, use a stone cleaner, then wash off the stonework. Be a little patient with this process, because stone will always restore well, given time. It’s well worth the extra effort to clean it scrupulously.

Picking the right sealer

When looking for sealer, the two basic factors are the type of stone and the look you want. All types of stone have preferred sealants, and the different types of sealant on the market today are designed specifically for them. The environment in which the stone is laid and its role in the home define the factors for consideration. Living and dining areas, for example, need full spectrum seals. These are the obvious risk zones for spills and stains. The stonework requires a good all-purpose sealer, with a finish to your taste.

The 5 best types of sealers for stone

Aquamix, a US manufacturer of sealants is an example of a company that offers a range of products to suit different stone types. They also have excellent technical back-up to help achieve optimal results. It’s worth having a quick look at Aquamix’s products, because they define the range of sealers available, and what they can do for your stonework:

Sealer’s Choice Gold: This is a dedicated maximum stain protector, designed for the typical home environment. It can be used on interior and exterior surfaces and grouting.

Ultra-Solv: Maximum stain protection for high density stone like bluestone.

Enrich ‘N’ Seal: This is a polymer sealer, designed to rejuvenate stone. It darkens and enhances the character of natural stone.

Seal & Finish Low-Sheen: Two products in one, an acrylic indoor/outdoor sealer with added finish. Recommended for slate.

High Gloss Sealer: A high gloss sealer and finish. This sealer is appropriate for many Australian homes, this sealer is unaffected by UV light.