What Is Ceramic and Porcelain Tile Sealer?
A sealer is a liquid coat applied to the porous surface of the tile or grout. It protects tiles from oxidation, natural deterioration and day-to-day wear. Typically speaking, sealers protect unglazed tiles and grouts from absorbing stains. Take a look at the following guidelines to help you choose the right sealant for your ceramic or porcelain tile project.
2 Types of Tile Sealers
The two main types of tile sealers are penetrating sealers and surface sealers.
These absorb into the tile or grout, forming a stain resistant shield just below the surface. Most penetrating sealers will not change the appearance of the tile.
These are a coating on the top of tile and grout, forming a non-porous, stain resistant seal. The surface sealer will enhance the rich natural colors of the tile, like in a wood-grain ceramic tile, and add a slight luster as well.
Important Considerations Before Using Tile Sealers
- You do not need to seal the surfaces of most ceramic and porcelain. Some do require a light application of a penetrating sealer to fill the micro pores on the surface of the tile.
- Seal all unglazed tiles, including dense porcelains, prior to grouting. This protects the tile from grout stains, especially when using a dark colored grout and a light colored tile.
- Impregnating sealers go into the grout joint and protect against water and oil-based stains.
- You must use penetrating or surface tile sealer on highly absorbent tiles, such as hand-made Saltillo tiles.
- Use only penetrating sealers on dense, unglazed tiles such as quarries or porcelains.
- It is important to follow manufacturer recommendations and read the instructions on any product you choose to use.
The information above is a set of guidelines. For further details, it’s a good idea to ask a BuildDirect product expert or a professional installer about which type of sealer performs best for the tile you’ve chosen. While considering color change and stain resistance, it is also important to consider whether a penetrating sealer or surface sealer will work best for your project.