How to Apply Block Paving Sealer
Learn how to apply block paving sealer and why you might want to consider applying a sealant to your paving. Applying a sealer will protect your block paving against weeds, algae and moss
Apply a block paving sealer to prevent contaminates such as oil and tyre marks on the surface. It also stops joint sand loss from between paving joints.
Below we learn how to prepare your paving for the application of block paving sealer and what you need to do before you apply to block paving.
Things to consider before you apply block paving sealer
Your block paving needs to be clean for best results before you apply the sealer. The surface needs to be weed dirt, moss and algae free before you seal the paving. This is because once applied, a paving sealer will seal in the dirt or not adhere to the surface correctly if the paving is dirty.
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If you do need to clean your paving before you start please see our guide on cleaning block paving on our block paving maintenance page. Once you have cleaned your paving, allow a few days for your paving to dry before application of block paving sealer. This is to make sure that no efflorescence appears on the surface after you have cleaned you paving blocks. Washing you’re paving could cause salts in the paving to rise to the surface.
More importantly, leaving your paving to dry for couple of days after you have cleaned your paving allows the paving to fully dry. (although how you keep it clean in that time is near impossible, especially from bird muck. Somehow birds seem to take great pleasure in bombarding newly cleaned block paving)
The paving and jointing sand needs to be perfectly dry before you apply the sealer. When dry the block paving and joint sand to absorb the sealer. If the kiln dried sand or paving is wet it will not absorb the block paving sealer correctly. There is the chance the paving will turn white where the paving was damp. To check the sand is dry scrape out a small section of the sand and check that it is not damp.
If possible re-sand lost joint sand on the day you apply the sealer
If you can, it helps to re-apply the kiln dried jointing sand on the day you seal the block paving. That way it guarantees that your paving sand and joints between the paving blocks will be dry. The paving joints also dry out faster if they are “given a bit of air to dry.” Although this will add a bit of time needed to apply the paving sealer.
If you cannot wait a few days between cleaning and sealing your block paving. The general rule of thumb is that once it is perfectly dry and you are happy with the way it looks then that is a good time to seal the paving. Remember that once sealed, it will be difficult if not impossible to remove the sealer from you paving so make sure that all stains and marks on your paving are removed. Or that you are completely satisfied how your paving looks. As they will be “sealed in” once the paving sealer has been applied to your driveway or patio.
What finish do you want for your sealer. Matt, low sheen or gloss?
Some block paving need two coats of sealer and some only need one. Usually if you apply two coats you get a glossier finish than using one coat. Unless the sealant has been specially made to give a matt or satin finish when dry. Normally if you want a gloss finish to the sealer it is best to use a polyurethane block paving sealer as these type of sealers hold a gloss better than an acrylic block paving sealer will. You can read about the different types of paving sealer.
With what tools are you going to apply the sealer with?
Decide how you are going to apply the sealer. Most DIY, one-off sealer applications use a roller and tray to apply the sealer, although you could use a sprayer. If you purchase a sprayer for the application of sealer make sure that it is correct type sprayer. Sprayers for solvent based sealers need to be vitron equipped. This means that the seal’s wont be dissolved by the solvent leading to the sealer spurting out of the seals. Always check that they are suitable before you purchase a sprayer.
Now you’re prepared with the knowledge of what’s needed, let us begin
Step-by-step guide on how to apply block paving sealer
Always make sure that it is a dry day when you apply the sealer to block paving and that there is no chance of rain for the next 12-24 hours after you have finished applying the sealant
- Always read manufacturers instructions before you begin to apply the product.
- Wear overalls or old clothing and suitable footwear when applying block paving sealer.
- Gloves, eye protection and a solvent respiratory mask are highly advisable when applying solvent based block paving sealer.
- Start applying the sealer at a corner edge of block paving. Working outwards.
- Work in straight lines across the paving but don’t cut yourself off from where you keep your resupply of sealer. This way you don’t have to walk on the sealed surface.
- It is best to saturate the surface of paving with sealer. This will allow the joint sand of the block paving to absorb plenty of the sealant. But don’t allow the sealer to pool in the joints of the paving or on the paving surface.
- Apply an even coat of block paving sealer to the complete area of paving.
- It is always best to apply a second coat of sealant if possible. This ensures that no areas of paving are missed. This should be done as soon as the first coat has dried. This is usually within 4 hours but is dependent on the weather conditions.
- Once the application of sealer is complete vehicular traffic should be kept off the paving for at least 24 hours. You should not walk on the sealed paving for at least 4 hours or until the sealer has dried.
- If you need to walk on the surface before completely dry then please wear an outdoor pair of shoes. Old golf shoes are perfect.
- Sit back and admire your now protected block paving
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