How Effective are Water Based Stone Sealers?

February 11, 2014 Off By Torin Dixon

resin_slabHow Effective are Water Based Sealers on Resin Sealed Granite?
By Torin Dixon

We receive numerous calls from customers who have used Water Based Stone Sealers, and who now have stains in their Granite Countertops. Why they ask, did my granite stain, when I just sealed it two, three, up to six times?

This is an unfortunate situation, and from my perspective, it is as simple as mixing ‘Oil and Water’. Let me explain. Nearly every ‘granite’ sold in North America is first “Resin Impregnated” in the factory in the manufacturing process. For a complete explanation, click HERE. In a nutshell, granite countertops are coated with a polyester resin in the factory, then ground and smoothed to a polish. In the process, pores are opened up allowing for oils and stains to penetrate if not properly sealed.

This is where things go wrong! Trying to use a water based stone sealer/impregnator may seem like a good thing, save the environment and all, but it’s like throwing water into a skillet of hot oil. Much of the water (carrier of protectant) will be repelled due to the presence of activated resins in the slab. If you apply a water based impregnator to a resin impregnated slab, much of the protective molecules will simply be wiped off when you do the final buffing.

As explained in my article for Slippery Rock, the manufacturer of the resins assured me that resin impregnated slabs still need to be sealed, due to the grinding and polishing that happens after the resin has cured, opening up pores in the stone. What is needed is a compatible (solvent) impregnator that will not be repelled by the remaining impregnated resins.

This is where the solvent based impregnators from HMK work better. The solvents are the carriers of the protective molecules. These solvent molecules are much smaller than a water molecule, and they are not repelled by adjacent resins impregnated in the granite. Once the solvent carries the protectants deep into the open pores, the solvents quickly evaporate (much quicker than water based), leaving the protective molecules.

HMK makes professional grade Impregnators for all types of Natural Stone. Our best selling product is HMK S34 Silicone Impregnator. This is a professional grade product that is far superior than water based sealers/impregnators.

For more information on how to Protect Granite Countertops, click HERE.

For further assistance, please contact StoneCareOnline at 800-380-6881