23 Jan 2015

Vulnerable Concrete

I took a call, recently, from someone that had a concrete driveway installed. The caller asked if a sealer could be put on the driveway.

Not that this is an unusual question for a concrete sealant manufacturer to be asked, but there was something about the manner that the question was phrased that made me ask some of my own questions. I asked basic questions about the driveway: when was it placed, how it was finished? As the conversation continued, it was revealed that the contractor/concrete installer had advised the driveway owner to not use a sealant for a year. Further conversation revealed that the driveway had been used through a Saskatchewan winter, and was now delaminating, spalling, and “chipping”.

All of these forms of damage to concrete can be caused by freeze/thaw cycles, and can be accelerated by salt and other substances used on our roads to lower the freeze temperature of water. All of these forms of damage to concrete can be prevented with the use of Seal-It Concrete Sealant. Seal-It Concrete Sealant can be applied to any age concrete, and can definitely be applied before 1 year. Seal-It Concrete Sealant can be applied to horizontal concrete as soon as the application procedure will not disturb the concrete surface. Seal-It Concrete Sealant can be applied to vertical concrete as soon as “forms” are removed.

I do not understand why anyone would make the recommendation that was made by the concrete installer. I was not able to find any information that would corroborate such a recommendation. Some lower quality concrete sealants are not recommended to be used until 28 days of curing, which is probably the most vulnerable period in the service life of concrete.

During the winter months the water from thawing enters the voids (air spaces) in the concrete. Even salt, or “salty”, water freezes, and when it freezes it will expand and “pop off” the concrete surface.

Anyone with new or, even, older concrete should seal now.

Seal-It Concrete Sealant can be applied as soon as you can walk on it, this will help cure the slab to be stronger and also resist salt damage as well as freeze thaw deterioration.