The advantages of most Aqua Mix® Stone, Tile & Grout Sealers are: They’re safe water-based products that are utilizing the latest in sealer technology. Most emit low or no VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds), and prevent a variety of stains – both oil and water-based. Allow MVT (Moisture Vapour Transmission)
Why Seal?……Reaction Time
When a liquid is spilt on a stone, tile or grout surface that has a degree of water absorption, a stain can result almost instantly as the reaction time to clean is short to zero! Sealing these same stone, tile or grout surfaces significantly reduces the degree of water absorption increasing the reaction time to clean and remove these contaminants before a stain can occur. Good sealers have reaction times measured in minutes, protecting the surface from primarily water based contaminants. The best or premium sealers have the longest reaction time measured in hours protecting surfaces from the widest range of contaminants both water and oil based.
The main types of damage that sealers can help limit are:
- Surface staining (especially from normal household contaminants)
- Salt damage (by reducing the amount of waterborne salt intrusion)
- Below surface chemical damage
- Mineral damage during installation (applicable to six-sided sealers)
- Frost damage (by reduction of water penetration)
- Mould and Mildew damage
Sealers Reaction Time
Aqua Mix® provides an easy guide to selecting the reaction time you need. Our sealers are divided into three levels of reaction time, Standard, Good and Maximum, easily recognisable by the RT stopwatch icon.
Standard: Penetrating Sealer, SameDay™ Grout Sealer
Good: Pro-Solv®, Grout Sealer, High-Gloss Sealer, Stone Enhancer
Maximum: Sealer’s Choice® Gold – Rapid Cure, Ultra-Solv®, Enrich’N’Seal™, Seal & Finish Low Sheen, Grout Colorant
Sealers & Slip Resistance
Aqua Mix Penetrating Sealers do not change the natural slip resistance of the stone or tile surface. In contrast coating/surface sealers can alter the natural slip resistance. The following article discusses the relationship between sealers and slip resistance in more detail.
Anti-Microbial technology built into Aqua Mix® Premium Sealers
MicroBan® is the global leader in anti-microbial technology and is built into the manufacturing process. MicroBan® anti-microbial acts to inhibit micro-organisms, providing another level of protection against damaging microbes, such as bacteria, mould and mildew that can cause, stains, odours and product deterioration. Aqua Mix® Sealer’s Choice® Gold – Rapid Cure, Aqua Mix® Ultra-Solv®, Aqua Mix® SameDay™Grout Sealer & Aqua Mix® Grout Colorant are all formulated with Microban® protecton built in.
What are VOC’s?
VOC’s (volatile organic compounds) have a damaging and negative affect on the environment and are now heavily regulated around the world. Aqua Mix® products are formulated with as low VOC content as possible with a significant number having no VOC content at all. Understanding VOC’s, what damage they cause to the environment and which products have low to no VOC content are all important factors in deciding which stone and tile care products to use.
Aqua Mix® Sealers Expected Wear
The first thing to understand is there are no internationally recognized test methods or standards for stone and tile sealers. There are some common test methods such as shear bond and vapour transmission, but no performance standards or standard tests a sealer must pass. This includes the performance characteristic of expected wear (EW). Because of this there is no independent way of evaluating one manufacturers claim regarding EW with another. However Aqua Mix® has always taken a responsible and scientific approach to all of our testing including claims regarding EW.
Moisture Content for Sealing
Generally sealers require a stone and tile to be dry prior to application. However how can we tell if they are actually dry enough to apply a sealer? All things contain a certain percentage of moisture even when they look dry. Therefore knowing how to identify if a stone or tile is dry enough to apply a sealer is a very important factor in ensuring sealer performance. The following article discusses the best methods for determining the moisture content of stone and tile prior to sealer application.
Types of Stone, Tile & Grout Sealers
There are two types of sealer technology available, Penetrating/Impregnators and Coating/Surface Sealers. All sealers fall into one of these two generic categories.
Penetrating / Impregnating Sealers
Premium stone, tile & grout sealers contain higher quality active ingredients than their more economical counterparts, delivering complete coverage of the gaps in the stone to provide better stain resistance, regardless of porosity and density.
Dense stones need smaller sealer molecules to fit into the smaller pores in the surface. Penetrating, water-based sealers offer excellent protection for stone with water as the carrier. Solvent-based sealers protect and penetrate with solvent-based carriers.
The choice between a water-based and solvent-based sealer is a matter of intended application. As long as both are premium tile & stone sealers, they will offer maximum levels of protection. Active ingredients, or solids, bond with stone and fill in the gaps, or pores, to penetrate the surface. What doesn’t penetrate the surface gets wiped away.
Coating / Surface Sealers
Sealers that provide surface protection, chemical & stain resistance by forming a film on the surface. These are generally used for matt textured porous surfaces, such as: Terracotta, Slate and Concrete. Coating Sealers will alter the appearance, slip resistance and are generally only used internally. All of Aqua Mix Coating / Surface Sealers are safe to use water-based formulas