In order to seal pavers:
- Choose your sealant—we recommend a water-based sealant.
- Use a hose or pressure washer to clean your pavers.
- Add joint sand between your pavers.
- Tap the pavers with a rubber mallet to settle the joint sand.
- Sweep excess sand off the pavers.
- Mist the sand between pavers with water and allow them to dry.
- Fill a pump sprayer with sealant and test it to make sure it is working.
- Use your sprayer to apply a coat of sealant to the pavers.
- Wait 2–3 hours, then apply a second coat of sealant.
- Allow an additional 2–3 hours for sealant to dry before use.
These steps result in stable, well-sealed pavers that will hold up well over time. Use this process to revitalize dull pavers and prevent invasive weeds from growing in the seams between pavers.
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Is it Worth it to Seal Pavers?
Sealing your pavers is a great way to improve the look of your pavers and reduce their maintenance overall. You can seal pavers to prevent weeds from growing between them, reduce the risk of mold on pavers, and prevent the joint sand between pavers from being dislodged. The increased shine and more vibrant color of sealed pavers are also worth the effort for many homeowners.
10 Steps to Seal Pavers the Right Way
Sealing pavers correctly is a DIY task you can take on yourself. In this step-by-step process, we’ll walk through everything you need—from tools to materials—to get the job done right.
Choose the Right Sealant
To seal porous pavers (such as brick) and harden the sand between pavers, use this water-based sealant. Water-based sealers are easy to use, make clean-up simple, and they improve the look and durability of your pavers within hours. If you prefer a high-gloss finish on your pavers, use a solvent-based sealer. Keep in mind, solvent-based sealers won’t harden the sand between pavers as effectively, so you’ll be trading durability for looks.
Clean Your Pavers
Your pavers must be clean before they can be sealed. Begin by pulling up any weeds, grass, and other plant growth between the pavers. Then, use a hose or pressure washer to thoroughly clean the surface of the pavers. Allow the pavers to dry before moving to the next step.
Add Joint Sand
Fill the joints between your pavers with this polymeric joint sand. Polymeric joint sand hardens when water (and water-based sealant) is applied, creating a barrier that will lock your pavers in place and keep weeds out. Use a funnel to carefully pour the joint sand into the cracks between pavers. Fill each seam until the sand is ⅛-inch (3 mm) below the top of the pavers.
Settle the Pavers
Once you are done adding joint sand, use a rubber mallet to firmly tap each paver 2 to 3 times. This will settle the sand between the pavers, resulting in a stronger seal with less loose sand in the future. It is essential to use a soft mallet to prevent breaking the pavers. A metal hammer risks cracking stone or brick.
Sweep Away Excess Joint Sand
Use a wide push broom to sweep the excess sand off your pavers. Polymeric sand is activated by water. Sand left behind on the surface of pavers will bond to the pavers when water is added. This results in a rough, gritty texture. By thoroughly sweeping the pavers, you’ll get a perfect, non-abrasive finish.
Mist the Sand with Water
Attach an adjustable-setting sprayer to the end of a garden hose. Set the sprayer to a fine “mist” setting. Then, mist the sand between the pavers until it is dampened. This will help settle the sand, harden it, and ensure it stays in place. Do not spray the sand with a powerful blast of water—this can dislodge sand before it has a chance to harden.
Fill and Test your Sprayer
Fill this pump sprayer three-quarters full with paver sealant. Then, pump the handle on top of the sprayer 3 to 5 times. Test the sprayer in a dirt or grassy area to make sure a mist of sealant is spraying continuously from the nozzle. It should spray an even, fine mist when the trigger is squeezed. If the spray is coming out in a powerful stream, adjust the nozzle until you achieve a mistlike spray.
Apply the First Coat of Sealant
Start at one edge of the paved area when spraying sealant. Hold the sprayer nozzle 2 to 6 inches above the pavers (5–15 cm). Squeeze the trigger to start a continuous spray of sealant. Sweep the sprayer nozzle in gentle side-to-side arcs as you squeeze the trigger. This will apply an even coat of sealant. Walk backward, sweeping the sprayer nozzle for even coverage. Stop and pump the handle on top of the sprayer whenever the spray loses pressure. Continue this process until the sprayers are evenly covered.
Add a Second Coat of Sealant
After the initial coat of sealant has been applied, wait 2–3 hours for the sealant to dry. Gently touch an area of the pavers with your hand to make sure the sealant feels dry. If it is sticky or rubbery, wait an additional hour for it to dry before testing again. Once the first coat is dry, apply a second coat of sealant, using the same process as the first coat.
Allow Time to Dry
After your second coat of sealant has been applied, wait an additional 2 to 3 hours for the sealant to fully dry. At this point, the sealant should be dry enough for you to walk on the surface and use it. However, it is best to wait overnight before moving patio furniture, grills, and other heavy items onto the pavers. With your pavers sealed, you’re now ready to enjoy your outdoor space.
Is it Better to Spray or Roll Paver Sealant?
Sprayers are a better choice for sealing pavers than rollers. Not only is it faster (even for beginners) to use a sprayer, but it also results in a smoother, more even finish. Even very fine rollers can leave a slight texture behind when used to apply paver sealant. Plus, they pick up loose sand and spread it around. Since a sprayer nozzle never touches the pavers, you don’t have to worry about it introducing any debris or adding a less-than-ideal texture to the finish.
What is the Best Way to Apply Sealant to Pavers?
Before sealing, clean your pavers and remove any weed growth between them. Then, pour polymeric joint sand into the seams between pavers until the sand is ⅛-inch (3 mm) below the top of the surrounding pavers. Next, tap the pavers with a rubber mallet to settle the sand. After sweeping away any excess sand, moisten the seams between pavers with a gentle spray of water from the hose. Once the pavers are dry, fill a pump sprayer with sealant. Sweeping the nozzle in gentle arcs, evenly mist the pavers. Allow the first coat 2 to 3 hours to dry and add a second coat. Once the second coat is fully dry, the job is complete.