Best Concrete Sealers for Garages and Driveways in 2018

Concrete floors may be slowly gaining popularity in homes, but they’ve been a staple for both garages and outdoor use for a long time. Over time, these surfaces need maintenance, and you can’t go wrong with as good sealer. Each of the following products are potentially the best concrete sealer for their type.

Our 4 Favorite Concrete Sealers

ProductTypeSheenCoverage
EnduraSeal 7747509 SealerSurfaceSemi-GlossUp to 1,500 sq ft
ToughCrete Concrete SealerPenetratingClearUp to 600 sq ft
Ghostshield Lithi-Tek LS 9500PenetratingClearUp to 1,000 sq ft
DryWay 205 Concrete SealerPenetratingClearUp to 1,000 sq ft

Concrete Sealer Reviews

There is a wide variety of sealers available out there, and you can generally pick them up at big box hardware stores like Home Depot, smaller independent shops that offer concrete, or online retailers like Amazon.

#1 – EnduraSeal 7747509 Concrete Sealer

This high performance, semi-gloss solvent sealer gives your substrate floor a shiny “wet” appearance. Made of pure acrylic, this sealer won’t yellow with age and remains highly durable without the associated cost found in other sealers. Two thin coats are recommended, and each gallon of the 5-gallon bucket will cover approximately 150 to 300 square feet.

Those who have purchased this sealer tend to be very enthusiastic about it. They stress proper preparation of the surface, but have reported excellent results using a sprayer or roller. In addition, they note that stained or painted surfaces sometimes look better than they originally did, thanks to the mild sheen from the sealer.

Some consumers have had problems with discoloration after the concrete surface was exposed to direct sunlight for a prolonged period of time. Unlike the yellowing common in sealers, these users reported that this product would cloud over and turn a milky white. The reason why this happened is unknown, so we recommend when using this as a concrete driveway sealer to test first in a small area exposed to direct sunlight.

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#2 – Quest Chemicals ToughCrete Concrete Sealer

This penetrating sealer is perfect for outdoor use, although it also makes an excellent garage floor sealer. As a siloxane product, it is eco-friendly and will protect against deterioration, salt damage, and water. Before using on any patterned or colored surface, you should remove any existing protective coat to allow for better penetration. With a satisfaction warranty of ten years, the mixture is water based and each gallon dilutes on a 1:2 ratio.

Users have had a lot of success with this product. Some have used it full strength, others diluted, and a few have done both based upon how heavy a particular area gets abused. In all cases, they have reported excellent results. While nobody has reported if it lasts the full ten years, it has certainly held up for users more than one year with no loss of performance.

No product is perfect, and ToughCrete isn’t an exception. On rare occasion, a user will still experience leaf stains. The reason for this is unknown and may have to do with how the product was applied or be related to the intensity of weather in that location. Whatever the cause, Quest Chemicals has stood by their warranty, making this product a very low financial risk to try.

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#3 – Ghostshield Lithi-Tek LS 9500 Concrete Sealer

When you want a garage or patio sealer, the industrial strength power of the LS 9500 blows away the competition. This sealer was designed strictly for solid concrete substrates and will not work on concrete block or polished surfaces

Surfaces coated in this sealer not only have the usual waterproofing and abrasion resistance, but suffer less from ASR, hydrostatic pressure, moisture intrusion, and water vapor transmission. The concrete itself is strengthened by up to 50 percent, and up to 1,000 square feet of concrete per coat can be covered once the sealer concentrate has been mixed with water in a 1:4 ratio.

Users have been pleasantly surprised by the effects of this sealer. The concrete clear coat goes on well and penetrates deep. As a result, they have noted that water beads on the surface after a couple days of curing.

Despite following instructions precisely, some users have had negative results. These vary from efflorescence to stains. Using this product on a polished floor will result in the sealer failing and may lead to water damage.

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#4 – RadonSeal DryWay 205 Concrete Sealer

Perfect for external surfaces, this penetrating sealer will protect concrete and masonry for several years. It forms a resistant 1/2 inch deep barrier against deterioration, mold, spills, and water penetration. It will also stand up well to direct sunlight, and resists heat, oxidation, and UV-rays.

Water and other liquids bead and are easily wiped away from the surface. One five gallon bucket will cover as much as 1,000 square feet of poured concrete, although other surfaces will require more to properly coat.

Consumers love how well the water beads on this sealer. Many with longer driveways have had to order a second bucket and have noticed a huge difference between the coated and uncoated sections after a rain. They recommend using a sprayer for the most efficient application.

This product has a much shorter lifespan in harsh climates, with some users reporting they have to reapply annually. There have also been some reports of leaf stains in the autumn. Older driveways that have never been treated can also require more sealer, so be ready to purchase an extra bucket in such cases.

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FAQs

Once upon a time (as recently as 50 years ago), the concept of concrete sealers was unheard of to the average homeowner. Nowadays, with the increased use of deicing chemicals and harsher weather conditions, sealers have become almost a necessity. The following questions are often asked by first-time buyers and will help you with choosing and using a sealer.

What does a concrete floor sealer do?

As the name implies, a concrete floor sealer will form a protective layer over your concrete floor or driveway Not only can it protect against abrasion and stains, but it can also enhance the color of your floor or give it a sheen, if a gloss is used.

There are two major types of sealer, and you can buy sealers in several different compounds, such as acrylic and epoxy. Surface sealers coat the surface in a protective layer. However, penetrating sealers will also bond with the concrete, adding additional protection against water saturation and the effects of deicing chemicals.

For this reason, the latter works best for driveways or other external surfaces, while the former is most often used on interior floors.

How do you apply concrete floor sealer?

Resealing your concrete surface is a simple process, but involves numerous steps. Both indoor and outdoor concrete floors have similar steps. Be sure to follow any additional directions included with your chosen sealer. You may apply concrete sealer using a roller or a sprayer.

You will need: scrub brush, mop, putty knife, degreaser, concrete filler (for regular concrete surfaces), and sealer.

  1. Remove everything from the surface. Remember, sealers only work if you apply them to the entire surface.
  2. Remove anything along the edges, such as baseboards or overhanging grass and open windows, if working indoors.
  3. Thoroughly sweep the surface to remove dust and other particles.
  4. Using a degreaser, remove any traces of grease or oil on your garage floor or driveway. You may have to scrub out tough stains.
  5. Mop the floor to remove any last traces of dust or chemicals. Allow the surface to fully dry.
  6. Apply concrete filler to any cracks or other damage as directed on the product, smoothing over with a putty knife. Give the filler several hours to cure.
  7. Add a small amount of sealer into a paint tray (if using a roller brush) or sprayer.
  8. Apply the sealer in a thin, even coat across the entire concrete surface. A regular brush is a good way to apply sealer along the edges before tackling the middle of the floor.
  9. Allow the coat up to 24 hours to dry. Using fans may help cut the time to as little as 12 hours.
  10. Apply additional coats as required for your sealer.

What’s the difference between Concrete Sealer and Epoxy?

On the surface, epoxy functions much like an acrylic, polyurethane, or siloxane sealer. However, an epoxy sealant is actually a type of surface coating. As epoxy doesn’t penetrate, let’s compare it to acrylic, the most popular surface concrete sealer.

Acrylic

As is typical with most surface sealers, acrylic may be either solvent or water based. They’re available in matte, clear, or gloss finishes and are applied in two thin coats. While perfect for more delicate stamped surfaces, acrylic isn’t as durable as penetrating sealers, so it will need recoated more often.

It dries quickly and cures in about a day. Solvent-based acrylics tend to be better for driveways and also enhance colored surfaces a bit better than the water based version. As many acrylic sealers offer UV protection, they are a good choice for external surfaces.

Epoxy

More commonly found in high-traffic areas, industrial settings, and places prone to chemicals or abrasion; an epoxy bonds with the concrete surface, making it extremely durable. Epoxy usually leaves a gloss finish, and is available in both clear and colored form.

It forms a thick surface coating that is harder than acrylic, although its non-porous makeup can leave existing water trapped under the surface. It also yellows when exposed to too much sun, making it an interior only solution.

Acrylic vs Epoxy Comparison Chart

 AcrylicEpoxy
LocationIndoor or OutdoorIndoor
DurabilityModerateHigh
SurfacesMostPoured
PreparationAverageMajor
ApplicationBrush, Roller or SprayBrush or Roller
Dry Time1 Hour to touch, 24 hours to cureSets fast, dries slow

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