Because concrete is a porous material, when used for countertops, it must be sealed. Otherwise, oil, water, food, and other substances will penetrate the concrete, leaving behind unsightly stains and potentially causing damage. The right sealant serves as a protective layer. In addition to maintaining aesthetics, the countertop will last much longer. Although commonly used, there are still a number of myths pertaining to countertop sealant.
One myth about countertop sealant is that there are limited options. In reality, there are several great choices. For example, penetrating sealers are applied to bare concrete. After soaking in, the protective film is almost invisible. This type of sealant decreases the concrete’s porosity while increasing the density of the surface. There are also densifiers, otherwise known as hardeners, and repellants, which change the tension characteristic of the surface so that liquids bead up as opposed to being absorbed.
Another myth about countertop sealant is that it is highly toxic. While some sealers are toxic, you will also find many environmentally friendly products. In this case, the company or licensed contractor that you hire can use a low- or no-VOC product. For kitchen countertops where food is prepared as well as for countertops in the bathroom, this is beneficial to everyone.
Some people believe that every countertop sealant has color. Having color added to a sealant is certainly a viable option. However, many heavy-duty products are not only food-safe but also non-yellowing, scratch and heat resistant, and colorless. Colorless is always a great option, especially if your countertop is made with an integral color that is in the actual concrete.
One additional myth about countertop sealant is that no product is capable of resisting things like red wine and lemon juice, which can cause serious stains and damage.