Surebond FAQ

 

General Information

 

1. What is a paver?

A type of stone used to create paths, walkways, driveways, etc. Pavers can be made of concrete or clay (bricks).

 

2. What are the benefits of using a sealer on my driveway, patio or walkway?

Sealing a hardscape surface does a number of things, including adding a protective coating against staining and corrosion while sometimes enhancing the appearance of the natural tones. Both of these benefits will help protect the investment that has been made in the installation. Some sealers also bond joint sand in between pavers, maintaining the structural integrity of the system and inhibiting weed growth.

 

3. How long does sealer last?

On average, 3-7 years, depending on product, environmental conditions and traffic of the area.

 

4. What is efflorescence?

Efflorescence is a whitish powder-like deposit that can form on the surface of natural building materials like pavers. As water evaporates from the stone, it brings calcium hydroxide to the surface. When calcium hydroxide meets carbon dioxide in the air, a reaction occurs forming calcium carbonate. This is what is known as efflorescence.

 

5. Is efflorescence harmful?

While it does make the surface appear chalky, efflorescence does not affect structural integrity or durability.

 

6. How does efflorescence relate to applying sealer?

Most sealer manufacturers recommend that you wait six weeks to six months after the installation of new pavers to apply their product. This is done to allow time for the majority of the efflorescence to come out of the stone. If it this is not done, the whitening can become trapped between the top of the stone and the seal coat, "locking in" the efflorescence. If this happens, the only way to remove the efflorescence is to remove the sealer, clean the efflorescence and reseal the surface.

 

7. What makes Surebond sealers different?

We use the term "immediate application" to describe our products, meaning that our sealers can be applied as soon as pavers are installed. This can be done, without worrying about trapping efflorescence, because of our proprietary formulas. They are "breathable", so efflorescence can travel through the sealer surface without becoming trapped. It can then be cleaned off or weathered off naturally without affecting the quality of the seal coat. This is an advantage for both the customer and installer as it eliminates the need to coordinate a separate appointment to seal weeks or months after a pavement is installed.

 

8. What is VOC content? What does it mean to me?

Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) are organic chemical compounds that have high enough vapor pressures under normal conditions to significantly vaporize and enter the atmosphere. They are common in a wide variety of chemical products, including sealer, and are generally measured as a function of grams per liter (g/L). VOC content is regulated at both the state and federal levels. The most stringent standards (for states like California) require that sealers contain less than 100 g/L; all Surebond products are below this level and thus are safe to use in all 50 states.

 

Product Questions

 

1. What is polymeric sand?

A mix of graded sand and a binder, formulated to harden between paving joints when water is added.

 

2. Which Surebond sealer is best for me?

View our Sealer Selection Guide to determine which sealer best fits the requirements.

 

3. What is SB-1300 Joint Stabilizing Sealer?

SB-1300 is a dual-purpose joint stabilizing sealer, meaning that it bonds joint sand and seals the paving surface in the same application.

 

4. What is SB-7000 and how is it different than SB-1300 Joint Stabilizing Sealer?

While both products will seal and bond sand between paver joints the same way, the difference between the two is finish. SB-1300 has a natural matte finish whereas SB-7000 has a gloss finish.

 

5. I see that you offer a product called SB-6000 Wet Look Sealer -- can I use this with SB-1300 Joint Stabilizing Sealer?

SB-600 Wet Look Sealer enhances the natural tones of a paving surface with darkened, wet look. This product does not bond jointing sand, but it can be used with SB-1300 to achieve the darkened appearance with bonded joints. To use them together, apply SB-600 Wet Look Sealer first and allow it to dry completely (24 hours, if possible). SB-1300 can then be applied on top of the coat of SB-600.

SB-600 and SB-1300 should NOT be mixed together.

 

6. Do you make any products that protect the paving surface without changing the appearance?

Yes -- our SB-4000 Water Repelling Invisible Sealer and SB-5000 Stainblocking Invisible Sealer offer excellent stain protection with an invisible finish.

 

7. Do you have a sealer that works on granite pavers?

We do not recommend sealing granite pavers. The density of granite often prevents sealer from being absorbed uniformly into the stone, leading to an uneven finish.

 

8. I see that you classify your products as "Enhancing Sealers" or "Penetrating Sealers" -- what is the difference?

Enhancing sealers protect masonry applications while improving their appearance with a variety of finishes. These unique formulations allow large particles to stay near the surface, altering the appearance, while smaller particles enter the substrate to bond and protect. These products are SB-1300 Joint Stabilizing Sealer, SB-7000 Gloss Finish Joint Stabilizing Sealer and SB-600 Wet Look Sealer.

Penetrating sealers offer the highest level of stain protection while leaving the appearance of the surface unchanged. These formulations penetrate deep to fill voids and prevent water and staining from setting into the material. These product are SB-4000 Water Repelling Invisible Sealer and SB-5000 Stainblocking Invisible Sealer.

 

9. I have oil and food stains -- do you make a product to clean them?

Yes, our SB-442 General Stain Remover.

 

10. I have efflorescence -- do you make a product to clean it?

Yes, our SB-488 Efflorescence & Rust Remover.

 

Applying Sealer

 

1. What is the best weather to apply sealer?

Sealer should be applied with a minimum surface temperature of 45°F and a maximum surface temperature of 95°F. The surface needs to be protected from moisture or rain for 24 to 48 hours.

 

2. How long does sealer need to dry before allowing traffic on it?

24 to 48 hours. Humidity and heat can delay the curing process.

 

3. How wide of a joint can I stabilize with SB-1300 Joint Stabilizing Sealer?

SB-1300 is recommended for joints that are 1/8" -- 3/4" wide.

 

4. What type of jointing sand should I use to stabilize a joint with SB-1300 Joint Stabilizing Sealer?

It is best to ask for a recommendation from your local paver manufacturer -- joint sand can be very regional. The sand should be dry and bagged and should conform to ASTM International Technical Standard C-144. The sand does NOT need to be polymeric sand but should be clean and dry. Old, dirty and uneven sand can impact the ability of the sealer to bond.

 

5. What tools do I need to apply sealer?

The best way to apply sealer is with a low pressure sprayer -- a handheld garden sprayer, pump sprayer or cordless electric sprayer will all work fine. All spraying should be done at 40 PSI or less. A neoprene or foam squeegee should be used to distribute the sealer evenly, especially into the joints for SB-1300 Joint Stabilizing Sealer application.

Sealer can also be applied with a paint roller and flood coat.

 

6. How many coats of sealer do I need to apply?

Most residential and low-traffic applications only need one coat. A second coat can be used where necessary.

 

7. How much product do I need?

Please refer to coverage charts for specific product and surface questions. A general rule of thumb, however, is that 1 gallon will cover 100 square feet.

 

8. Can I seal natural stone like bluestone or flagstone?

It is possible to seal these types of natural stone. Care should be taken that these surfaces be thoroughly cleaned before sealer application, however. Sealer will often displace dirt that lies deep within stone, brining it to the surface and then drying, "locking" the dirt in the seal coat. A high pressure wash is the best way to clean these surfaces prior to sealer application.

 

9. Can sealer be applied to a sloping driveway?

Yes, but it depends on the pitch. Surebond sealers have the consistency of water so simply be sure that they are penetrating as they would on a flat surface.

 

10. I applied sealer but ran out -- can I finish later?

Yes, more sealer can be applied at a later date without showing any marks from overlapping.

 

11. Can SB-1300 Joint Stabilizing Sealer be used with mortar between the paver joints?

Yes.

 

12. I have left-over sealer that I don't need anymore. How do I dispose of it?

Because all Surebond products are water-based and environmentally friendly, they can safely be poured onto a lawn or down the drain. Empty bottles should simply be recycled.

 

13. Can SB-7000 Gloss Finish Joint Stabilizing Sealer be used on an acid-stained floor?

Yes.

 

Maintenance

 

1. Will a deicer or salt affect the sealer?

No, these products will not damage or remove the sealer. Sealer can be applied to areas that have previously been treated with calcium chloride, assuming that they are clean and dry at the time of sealing.

 

2. How do I remove sealer?

In some cases, sealer can be removed with a high-pressure, hot water power wash. This method will require a number of treatments to remove the sealer.

A low-pressure chemical wash can also be used to break up sealer. Follow this with a high-pressure, hot water power wash.

Lastly, a chemical stripping agent can be used. We recommend SmartStrip by Dumond Chemicals.

 

3. I have efflorescence that has come through after sealer has been applied -- how do I clean it off?

Efflorescence will wear off naturally over time. If it is to be cleaned off, a hot water pressure wash or treatment with SB-488 Efflorescence & Rust Remover will work. It should be noted that these treatments can also strip off sealer if done in excess.