How to Seal Your Interlocking Driveway or Pathway
How to Seal Your Interlocking Driveway or Pathway
It’s important to have your interlocking driveway or pathway sealed regularly. Bricks and pavers that are left unsealed can fade, stain, lose sand in the cracks, develop mould and weeds can start to grow between the pavers. When you maintain your interlocking walkway and driveway with proper sealing techniques, you can expect your bricks or pavers to last long and remain beautiful.
Throughout the years the interlocking pavers installed in your walkway or driveway will be subjected to a number of different elements such as:
- Bleaching from the rays of the sun
- Excessive water
- Salt residue
- Oil stains
These can all stain and soil the interlocking stones so that they don’t look as good as when they were first laid down. It’s just a fact of life that the pavers will be exposed to a lot of wear and tear over the years. This is why it’s so important to properly seal your driveway, patio or walkway properly at the start and to seal it regularly as the years go by.
Choosing the Right Sealer for an Interlocking Walkway or Driveway
The sealer that you choose will all depend on the following:
- The type of finished look you’d like to achieve
- The amount of stabilization required for the sand between the joints
- How much stain resistance is required
There are seals available that provide stabilization for the sand in the cracks and in most cases it’s recommended to get this type of sealer. There will be a different stabilization requirement from one driveway to the next based on the type of ground that the pavers are on and the slope of the driveway or walkway. As well, each driveway will require a different amount of stain resistance based on the location of the home, weather conditions and other contributing factors.
Preparing the Surface for a Natural Stone Driveway
If you are going to be using concrete pavers that have been manufactured recently, they should be left to cure for at least 14 days before any sealing product is applied. This will vary according to the stones you are using so be sure to take a look at the manufacturer’s recommendations.
Before applying any type of sealing product the surface of the pavers must be 100% clean. This involves removing any paint, grease, oil or dirt from the bricks. If the pavers have already been sealed in the past it’s important to remove the previous sealer before applying the new one if there is any chance that the two sealers aren’t compatible with one another. There are products available to remove old sealers quite easily.
Sealing New Installations
In order to prepare the surface for sealing new installations be sure that the sand is 1/8 inch or more below the paver surface. Use a broom and a blower to remove any fine powder or sand residue and if there is any moisture on the pavers they should be allowed to dry for 24 hours or more. If you do notice any moisture, you may have to wait longer than 48 hours if the temperature is cool outside or if you have washed the pavers with a pressure washer. You won’t want to apply the sealer until you see that the pavers and the sand in the joints are completely dry.
The temperature of the surface should be anywhere ranging from 55°F to 85°F. Check the weather before applying your sealer to make sure that the temperature will be mild and not too cool. You should also make sure that there is no rain in the forecast for the next few days.
How to Apply Paver Sealer to an Interlocking Driveway or Walkway
One of the best ways to apply the sealer is by using a garden type of sprayer. The first coat that is put on should heavily saturate the pavers and you should notice that the joints are flooded. This gives you the certainty of knowing that the sealer has been completely soaked into the sand.
After this step is done, use a squeegee to wipe away any excess sealer in the sand joints. A large rubber or foam squeegee may be used to do this. Do a section at a time and as you are doing it make sure that no puddles have formed on the stones.
A second coat can be applied thinly usually after two hours, but this will depend on the recommended guidelines provided by the manufacturer of the sealer. A second coat will provide additional gloss and protection to a paved walkway or driveway. Allow the final coat to dry for at least two hours before walking on it but try to keep off it is much as possible during this time. As well, there should be no vehicles allowed on the driveway for at least 72 hours to ensure the proper curing of the sealer. These are general guidelines but always check the product label first to see what the manufacturer of the product recommends.
There are special cleaners available for routine cleaning of your interlocking walkways, patio and driveway. There are also heavy duty cleaners on the market that will help you remove oil or grease spots.
As long as your first sealer was applied properly you probably won’t need to reseal your interlocked area again for another 3 to 5 years. It’s important not to reseal the stones too often since it can result in faded pavers and various other problems. If you think that it’s time to get your pavers resealed, it’s best to contact an interlocking professional for advice.
Keep your interlocking stones and pavers looking their best with regular maintenance. If you need any type of help at all, please feel free to reach out to us through our website at www.egeinterlock.com or give us a call directly at 416-887-0884. At EGE Interlocking & Paving we are the natural stone specialists that know exactly what it takes to keep interlocked areas looking their best all year round.