BEHR Concrete Stain Review

Posted: 30th September 2014 by admin in Product Reviews

BEHR concrete stain is not a concrete stain. It is in fact a colored concrete acrylic which can be very confusion to consumers. With traditional acid based stains, a liquid is applied to the concrete to dye the concrete. Traditional stains do not leave behind a film or coating on the surface. Once concrete has been stained, a protecting coating can be applied to protect the concrete and the color.

If you use the BEHR concrete stain, you can’t apply anything to the surface. When it is time to reapply this product, you need to remove what is down and start fresh again.

We don’t like this product because if you read the reviews many consumers have been mislead and confused about this product. They will apply the BEHR concrete stain and then proceed with applying a coating over the stain. Much to their surprise, when you apply anything to the surface of the BEHR stain, both the coating and the BEHR product will start to peel up.

BEHR concrete stain is NOT a stain. It is in fact a colored acrylic coating and should be marked as such. For that reason, we give BEHR concrete stain a bad review. It is misleading, hard to maintain, and has a short life.

Foundation Armor AX25 Review

Posted: 30th September 2014 by admin in Product Reviews

The Armor AX25 is a Siloxane infused acrylic sealer offering durability and performance over traditional acrylics. It high gloss finish offers more than just shine – it will repel everything from salt water and rain water to spilled drinks and food.

Performance: When traditional acrylics start to fade, the concrete is left fully exposed. Water will accumulate below the coating and can cause multiple issues including cracking, spalling, pitting and staining. When the acrylic component of the AX25 starts to wear, the Siloxane component remains in the pores on the surface, causing water and other liquids to repel. With the AX25 you get the benefit of using a water repellent sealer and a high gloss acrylic coating.

Price: When you take into consideration that you get two products for the price of one, and that the coating will last 2-5 years, the price is very reasonable.

Appearance: Concrete magazines and decorative concrete contractors rave about this product on their websites and blogs. The performance is unmatched and the gloss is significantly higher than most higher solids acrylics. All critics agree, this product looks as amazing as it performs.

 

Armor AX25 High Gloss Sealer

Armor AX25 High Gloss Sealer

Best High Gloss Paver Sealer

Posted: 27th September 2014 by admin in Pavers

The best high gloss paver sealers are going to be solvent based acrylic sealers that range from 25-30% solids. Here’s why:

  • Low solids solutions (10-20%) won’t yield as high of a gloss as a 25-30% solids solution mostly because low solids solutions tend to penetrate easier into a surface and won’t leave behind as much or a surface build.
  • Solvent based acrylic sealers win over water based acrylic sealers every time. Water based products don’t offer as much of a shine, their life is at least 1 year less than that of a solvent based acrylic, and when it is time to reapply you need to remove what is down. Solvent based acrylic sealers are easy to apply and very easy to maintain.
  • Acrylic sealers are the only decorative sealer that should ever be used on an exterior concrete surface. If you apply a non-breathable product like an epoxy or urethane, it will peel once moisture becomes present. Acrylic sealers are breathable and bond nicely to a variety of surfaces.

How To Apply A High Gloss Paver Sealer

Foundation Armor AR500 Wet Look Gloss Coating

FoundationArmor.com AR500 Wet Look Gloss Coating

The first step to applying a high gloss paver sealer is to choose a high gloss paver sealer. Consider a professional grade product, like the Armor AR500, that contains additives to aid with performance and life.

  1. Make sure the pavers are clean and free of anything that would prevent proper penetration and bonding. If you have a solvent based acrylic already down, make sure the surface is clean and any areas of blushing or peeling have been removed or repaired.
  2. Using a 3/8-1/2 roller, apply the first coat across the entire surface. Wait 4-6 hours and repeat with a second coat.
  3. Let dry.

Best Time To Apply Concrete Sealers

Posted: 27th September 2014 by admin in Technical

The best time to apply a concrete sealer will vary depending on where in the country you are applying the concrete sealer, and the type of concrete sealer you are using. For example, in the North East the best time to apply an acrylic sealer is in the fall because it is cool and dry. Does that mean you can’t apply an acrylic in the Spring or Summer? No. You can apply a concrete sealer during any season, you just want to take weather into consideration and alter application time.

Here are a few tips for sealing concrete:

  1. If you are applying an acrylic sealer to an exterior surface and the sun heats up the concrete to 100 degrees or higher, consider applying the acrylic sealer late in the afternoon or evening.
  2. Avoid applying an acrylic sealer to an exterior surface in the early morning. In most parts of the country, there will be “dew” on the ground in the morning. Acrylics are moisture sensitive and the dew will cause bubbles or a white haze.
  3. Don’t leave your concrete unsealed in the Winter. You can seal your concrete in the Spring, Summer or Fall, but don’t leave your concrete unprotected during the Winter. Freeze thaw cycles and de-icing salts will cause concrete to spall, pit and crack if not properly sealed.

Here are a few factors that impact sealer life and performance during application:

  1. Heat: If you apply a sealer to hot concrete in the middle of a hot day, the solvent or water base could evaporate before the sealer has a chance to react or cure.
  2. Water: Rain before or after an application will cause an acrylic to turn white, and it could dilute water repellent enough where they may not work. Make sure the concrete is completely dry during the time of application and be sure to keep your concrete dry for at least 24 hours after.
  3. Cold: If you apply a concrete sealer to an exterior application and the temperatures are below freezing, chances are the liquid sent will freeze to.

When it comes to sealing interior concrete there aren’t many limitations. Even basements always remain above freezing. The most important factor to take into consider when sealing interior concrete is choosing the correct sealer for your application.

Best Silane Siloxane Concrete Sealers

Posted: 22nd September 2014 by admin in Silane/Siloxane Sealers

The best Silane Siloxane concrete sealers. Silane Siloxane concrete sealer reviews.

When it comes to water repellent sealers, like Silane-Siloxane concrete sealers, the solids percentage is associated with active materials. The  more active materials in the solution, the more aggressive the bead and the more protection the sealer is capable of offering. Here are a few tips when purchasing Silane-Siloxane concrete sealers:

  • Silane Siloxane sealers are available in water and solvent based solutions. Water based solutions tend to have a lower solids content where as solvent based solutions tend to have a higher solids content.
  • Local hardware stores, like Home Depot and Lowes, only offer low solids solutions (2-8% solids). They are easy to come by and are available at a favorable price point of $20/gallon. The problem with low solids solutions is that they offer minimal protection and don’t last long. Consider instead searching online for an industrial grade, high solids solution (40% solids). A high solids solution will perform noticeable better and last significantly longer than a low solids solution.

Silane Siloxane sealers are very easy to apply. The following video was submit by Foundation Armor, a leading silane-Siloxane chemical manufacturer:

Silane Siloxane application tips:

  • When applying a silane Siloxane concrete sealer, space the coats out 24 hours. This will allow the first coat to fully cure, leaving you with more protection above and below the surface.
  • Use a roller to apply a silane-Siloxane concrete sealer. If you are not experienced with applying sealers, or using sprayers, a roller will make for a quick, easy, and efficient application.
  • Apply silane-Siloxane sealers to concrete that is completely dry. If water or moisture is present during the time of application it could prevent the sealer from properly reacting.

Best High Gloss Paver Sealer

Posted: 17th September 2014 by admin in Pavers

The best type of high gloss paver sealer to use on pavers in a breathable, solvent based acrylic sealer.

Not all paver sealers are treated equal. In fact, due to the porosity of the pavers, not all sealers look the same when applied to pavers. When choosing a paver sealer it is important to consider a few factors:

  1. What makes one sealer different from the next is the manufacturer’s formulation. Different sealers use different blends on resins and solvents. Some resins will penetrate great and others will leave behind a wear surface. Consider a professional grade, or higher quality, sealer that uses a better blend of resins and solvents.
  2. The carrier and chemical makeup will vary from product to product. For example, water or solvent based, high or low solids. You want to go with a solvent based product that has 25-30% solids. Solvent based products go on better and are very easy to maintain; water based products need to be removed and can’t be touched up or reapplied. Solids content is not associated with quality – it is associated with gloss. 25% and 30% solids solutions will give the same amount of gloss.

When applying an acrylic sealer to pavers there are a few things to consider. If you follow these tips you will help to increase the life and gloss level of the acrylic you apply:

  1. During the time of application, make sure the pavers are completely dry. Moisture can cause blushing and delamination. A dry surface will allow for proper penetration and bonding.
  2. Space out the coats. Go the maximum time between coats to allow for the first coat to develop a film. Some companies allow only a few hours while other companies, when you talk to a technician, will allow for up to 24 hours.
  3. Keep the coating dry for 2-3 days. If you apply an acrylic and it rains or gets wet before the curing period, you will end up with a white blushing on the surface and will have to use a Xylene type product to repair it.
  4. If you are applying an acrylic to an area with known moisture consider applying a sealer down first. Acrylics are moisture sensitive and high amounts of moisture will cause an acrylic to delaminate. Consider a solvent based silane Siloxane before applying a solvent based acrylic. Space the application out about 3-5 days.

Best Paver Sealers

Here are a few top rated products:

  1. Armor AR500 – Professional grade high gloss paver sealer. 2-5 year life.
  2. Eagle Sealer – High gloss paver sealer. 1-2 year life.
  3. H&C Sealer – High gloss paver sealer. 1-2 year life.

 

Best Concrete Sealer for New Driveway

Posted: 9th September 2014 by admin in Concrete Driveways

There are a few concrete driveway sealers that can be used to seal a new concrete driveway. When you seal your driveway will depend on the type of sealer you want to use and what you are looking to achieve.

Cure and Seal

Cure and seal sealers can be applied to new concrete (concrete that has been poured in as little as 24 hours prior to sealing). Cure and seal products will prevent the concrete from losing too much water, too quickly and will allow for the new concrete to properly cure. There are curing compounds (which won’t leave behind a coating) and cure and seals which will leave behind a surface coating.

Silane Siloxane Sealers

Silane-Siloxane sealers are the most popular type of sealer to use on a concrete driveway but in order to use a silane-Siloxane driveway the concrete should be fully cured (28 days old). Silane-Siloxane sealers will penetrate into the concrete and leave behind a hydrophobic barrier within the pores of the concrete causing water and other liquids to bead off the surface. Silane-Siloxane sealers do not change the look or color of the concrete, and they do not leave behind a surface film. Silane-Siloxane sealers will help to stop and prevent a variety of issues including freeze thaw damage and mold growth.

When searching for a Silane-Siloxane sealer consider a high solids, solvent based sealer like the Armor SX5000 (featured in video).

How a Silane-Siloxane Sealer Works

Acrylic Sealers

Acrylic sealers are available in several formulations. Some acrylic sealers can be applied to new concrete (cure and seal) and some acrylics must be applied to cured concrete. Acrylic sealers will give concrete a wet look, satin sheen, or high gloss finish. They are the best type of sealer to use on exterior concrete because of their breathability and adhesion. Acrylic sealers can be applied to virtually all types of concrete surfaces including poured concrete, stamped concrete and pavers.

When shopping for an acrylic sealer, consider a solvent based solution. Solvent based acrylics are very easy to use. When the acrylic has reached the end of its life, you simply put more down. With water based, you would have to remove what was down and start over.

Not all acrylic sealers are treated equal. There are professional grade acrylics, like the Armor AR350 which will give you about 2-5 years, and there are temporary acrylics, like the Eagle Sealer, which will get you through one season.

AR350-Driveway-Coating-Before-After

Foundation Armor AR350 Wet Look Driveway Sealer

Foundation Armor AR350 Review

Posted: 5th September 2014 by admin in Acrylics, Product Reviews

Foundation Armor AR350 wet look sealer has been taking the industry by storm. It offers superior bonding and adhesion to concrete surfaces and will outlast other similar products in this category. Here are a few customer testimonials we have gathered from the web:

Concrete Décor Magazine

In May of 2014, Concrete Décor Magazine posted a photo of a customer that had experienced severe acrylic blushing (white surface haze) in New Mexico. One coat of the Armor Blush Repair and 2 coats of the Armor AR350 later, the customer’s patio looked fantastic.

Foundation Armor Blush Repair and Foundation Armor AR350

Foundation Armor Blush Repair and Foundation Armor AR350

Facebook

Facebook is a great place to check for honest customer reviews and testimonials. You hear directly from the customer about their experience with a company’s product. With thousands of likes and hundreds of photos, we consider this to be a great review source.

Doreen: “Total happiness with this product! Love it!”

Doreen AR350 Review

Doreen AR350 Review

 

Barry: “My wife is in love with our new pool deck!”

Barry AR350 Pool Deck

Barry AR350 Pool Deck

 

For dozens more customer photos, visit the Foundation Armor Facebook page!

Best Silane Siloxane Water Repellent

Posted: 3rd September 2014 by admin in Silane/Siloxane Sealers

With all the products available, it can be hard to find the best Silane Siloxane water repellent. Use this guide to learn about silane Siloxane water repellents and the differences between each silane Siloxane water repellent.

Best Silane Siloxane Sealers

  1. Foundation Armor
    1. SX5000 (40% solids, DOT approved)
    2. SX5000 WB (10.5% solids)
    3. SX5000 EXT100 (100% solids)
  2. Okon
    1. S-20 (2-8% solids)
    2. S-40 (7-15% solids)
  3. H& C
    1. SX-7 (7% solids)
    2. HB-100 (10% solids)
    3. HB-150 (15% solids)
  4. Prosoco
    1. Sure Klean® Weather Seal Siloxane PD
  5. Eagle
    1. Natural Seal (2-7% solids)

Silane Siloxane Water Repellents

When it comes to choosing a Silane Siloxane water repellent, there are a few factors to consider:

  1. Percent Solids: The percent solids is associated with the formula. The lower the solids, the cheaper the solution. You can purchase a 2% solids solution for $20/gallon but it won’t give you anywhere near as much protection as a 40% solids solution which costs around $50-65/gallon. Higher solids solutions will allow for a more aggressive bead. They have also proven to perform better and last longer.
  2. Water or Solvent Based: Water based solutions tend to have a lower solids content than solvent based solutions. Water based products are great to use on applications where fumes are a concern but solvent based solutions will penetrate better. Another benefit to going with solvent is that you can apply a sealer or paint over a solvent based surface, but not with a water based surface.
  3. Performance: If you apply a 40% solids solvent based solution to a basement wall, you an see an up to 40% reduction in moisture penetration. If you apply a 5% water based solution, you may see a 2-5% reduction. Higher solids solutions will fill in more of the pore.

How Water Repellents Work

Silane Siloxane water repellents penetrate into the concrete to form a hydrophobic barrier within the pores, causing water and other liquids to bead off the surface. All silane Siloxane sealers are breathable, and they won’t change the appearance of the sealed substrate.

Here is a video that demonstrates how a Silane Siloxane water repellent works:

Best Concrete Resurfacer

Posted: 25th August 2014 by admin in Concrete Restoration

Some concrete is damaged beyond repair and the best way to repair the concrete surface is with a concrete resurfacer. The best concrete resurfacing material is the Quikrete Concrete Resurfacer (No 1131). The QUIKRETE® Concrete Resurfacer (No. 1131) is a special blend of Portland cement, sand, polymer modifiers and other additives. Designed to provide a shrinkage compensated repair material for making thin repairs to sound concrete in need of surface renewal. Can be squeegee, trowel or brush applied.

Once the concrete is cured, it is important to seal the concrete. You can opt for a water repellent sealer, or a protective coating. What’s the difference? A water repellent sealer, like a silane-siloxane sealer, will work entirely below the surface without changing the look or color of the concrete. It will cause water and other liquids to bead off the surface, protecting the concrete from damage caused by the absorption of water (spalling, mold, mildew). If you want a wet look, satin sheen, or high gloss coating, or if you require protection from oil, gas, or hot tire pickup, you need a coating. For exterior coatings, consider a solvent based acrylic and for interior coatings, an aliphatic polyurethane.