Sealing Concrete

For standard plain concrete driveways and walkways, Concrete Alberta recommends proper sealing of the surface with a penetrating sealer, following the manufacturer’s instructions. Consult your concrete accessories specialist for recommendations on proper maintenance of both plain and coloured/decorative concrete.

Sealing of the concrete surface should take place no sooner than 28 days after concrete placement and in some instances longer to allow the concrete to air dry before applying a sealer. Depending on the time of year of placement of the concrete and the amount and type of curing, appropriate timing of sealing and surface preparation before initial sealing may be required. Check with your local concrete accessories supplier for further instructions and follow manufacturers’ recommendations for best results.

Concrete should be resealed with a high quality sealer at a minimum of every three years or sooner if suggested by the product manufacturer. Again, check with your concrete accessories professional for guidelines on any surface prep or stain removal that may be required before applying any sealer. Click here to download a pdf of this bulletin.

CAUTION: The use of de-icing chemicals and all fertilizers may be detrimental to your concrete surface. See Concrete Alberta Bulletins and Tech Tips for more Information.

Protecting Concrete

Many materials have no effect on concrete. However, there are some aggressive materials, such as most acids, that can have a deteriorating effect on concrete.

The first line of defense against chemical attack is to use quality concrete with maximum chemical resistance, followed by the application of protective treatments to keep corrosive substances from contacting the concrete. Principles and practices that improve the chemical resistance of concrete include using a low water-cement ratio, selecting a suitable cement type such as sulfate-resistant cement to prevent sulfate attack, using suitable aggregates, water and air entrainment. A large number of chemical formulations are available as sealers and coatings to protect concrete from a variety of environments; detailed recommendations should be requested from manufacturers, formulators or material suppliers.

Contact an ARMCA Member Concrete Accessories Supplier