What Are The Disadvantages Of Sealing Pavers

Have you ever considered sealing your pavers but wondered about the potential downsides? Well, look no further because in this article, I'm going to explore what are the disadvantages of sealing pavers.

When it comes to paving surfaces, sealing them may seem like a great idea at first. It can enhance their color, protect against stains and spills, and even extend their lifespan. However, it's important to be aware of the negative effects that sealing pavers can have.

From maintenance challenges to limitations on the appearance of your paved area, there are definitely some drawbacks to consider before taking the plunge.

So if you're ready for a deep dive into the world of sealed pavers and want to make an informed decision for your outdoor space, keep reading!

Cons Of Sealing Pavers

However, sealing pavers has drawbacks. Sealing pavers has many benefits, but there are also drawbacks.

Sealing pavers changes their appearance and texture, which is a drawback. You may not like the sealant darkening or enhancing of the pavers' natural color. Some sealants smooth the surface, removing the textured appeal of pavers.

Sealing pavers can damage them in some cases. Efflorescence, a white powdery substance, can occur on pavers when moisture becomes trapped beneath the sealed surface. This damages their appearance and suggests water damage. A low-quality or incompatible sealant may not adhere to your pavers and peel or flake over time.

Wet slipperiness is a major issue with sealed paver surfaces. Sealants prevent stains and UV damage, but rain and sprinkler systems can make them slippery. This is dangerous for anyone walking on or near the sealed area, especially children and the elderly, who may slip and fall.

It's important to weigh these drawbacks against your preferences and needs before sealing your pavers. Understanding both sides lets you make an informed decision about preserving your outdoor space without compromising its aesthetic appeal or safety.

Bad Effects

Bad Effects

It's tempting to protect your pavers, but it can shorten their lifespan and damage their natural beauty. There are pros and cons to sealing your pavers.

  1. Loss of Natural Appearance: One major disadvantage of sealing pavers is the potential loss of their natural appearance. Paver sealing creates a glossy finish that alters the original color and texture of the stones. This can be especially disappointing if you chose your pavers for their unique aesthetic appeal. The vibrant hues and intricate patterns may become muted or distorted under the sealant, compromising the overall look and charm.
  2. Trapped Moisture: Another negative effect of sealing pavers is trapped moisture. Although sealers are designed to repel water, they can also prevent proper evaporation by creating a barrier on the surface. This can lead to moisture being trapped underneath the sealer, which in turn promotes mold, mildew, and algae growth. These unsightly organisms not only detract from your paver's visual appeal but can also cause structural damage over time.
  3. Decreased Durability: Sealing your pavers may actually decrease their durability in certain cases. Some sealants create a slippery surface when wet, increasing the risk of slips and falls, especially in areas prone to rain or near swimming pools. Additionally, certain types of sealers can wear down faster than others due to heavy foot traffic or exposure to harsh weather conditions. This could result in frequent resealing or even premature cracking and chipping of your once-sturdy pavers.

Sealing pavers have drawbacks, so weigh them against their benefits before choosing them for your outdoor space. Protection against stains and easier maintenance are tempting, but they may affect your pavers' aesthetics and durability.


To fully appreciate your outdoor space's natural beauty and longevity, understand the drawbacks of sealing your pavers.

Sealing can improve color and prevent stains, but it has drawbacks.

First, sealing takes time and effort. It requires thorough paver cleaning, multiple sealer coats, and enough drying time between coats. Users who prefer quick and easy maintenance may find this tedious.

In addition to the sealing effort, there may be post-application drawbacks. A major drawback is that sealed pavers may become slippery when wet. In areas with heavy foot traffic or near swimming pools with splashes, this could be dangerous. Sealed pavers may need more maintenance. The sealer may fade or break down due to sunlight and harsh weather, causing surface discoloration or patchiness.

Another drawback of sealing pavers is reduced breathability. Pavers' porous surface allows moisture to evaporate, but sealers block this process. Captured moisture beneath the sealant can cause efflorescence, a white powdery residue on pavers caused by salt deposits pushing out over time.

Finally, not sealing pavers has drawbacks. Without sealers, unsealed pavers are more susceptible to oil spills and other stains.

Sealers improve appearance and prevent stains, but they also have drawbacks. Sealing can take time, it can make pavers slippery and require more maintenance, and it restricts breathability, which can cause efflorescence. Before choosing, weigh these drawbacks against the pros and consider personal preferences.



Sealing outdoor surfaces has drawbacks, but it's important to consider them. Despite its many benefits, such as stain and weather resistance, sealing pavers has drawbacks.

Sealed pavers can become slippery when wet, posing a safety hazard in high-traffic areas or near pools. Sealing pavers requires ongoing maintenance and reapplication, which is time-consuming and expensive.

Pavers can lose their natural appearance when sealed. Some prefer the rustic or aged look of unsealed pavers, and sealants may make them too glossy. If you want your outdoor spaces to feel natural, this may not be ideal. The sealant's peeling or deterioration can also detract from the paved area's aesthetics.

Another drawback of sealing pavers is reduced breathability. Paved surfaces must let water vapor escape naturally to prevent mold and efflorescence. Sealing pavers creates a barrier that may cause moisture buildup and long-term damage. In humid or draining areas, this drawback should be considered.

Sealing pavers has drawbacks like slipperiness when wet, altered appearance, and reduced breathability, but they should still be considered for outdoor surfaces. To decide whether paver sealing is right, weigh these pros and cons.

Issues With Sealing

Sealing outdoor surfaces can improve their longevity and appearance, but there are some drawbacks. Here are three sealing issues to consider:

  1. Risk of trapped moisture: One of the main drawbacks of sealing brick pavers is the potential for trapping moisture underneath the sealer. If water gets trapped beneath the surface, it can lead to mold or mildew growth, which not only affects the aesthetics but also compromises the structural integrity over time. To avoid this issue, it's crucial to ensure proper drainage before applying a sealer.
  2. Limited breathability: Another drawback of using sealers on pavers is that they reduce the breathability of the surface. Pavers are designed to allow water and air to pass through, preventing pooling and promoting natural evaporation. However, when sealed, this natural process is hindered, leading to potential problems like efflorescence or spalling. It's essential to choose a high-quality sealer specifically designed for pavers that maintain their permeability.
  3. Maintenance requirements: Sealed pavers require regular maintenance compared to unsealed ones. Over time, the sealer will wear off due to foot traffic and environmental factors such as UV rays and harsh weather conditions. Reapplication of sealers becomes necessary every couple of years or as recommended by manufacturers. This additional maintenance can be cumbersome for some homeowners who prefer low-maintenance outdoor surfaces.

These sealing paver issues can help you decide if it's right for your outdoor space's appearance, durability, and quality. Let us know more about what are the disadvantages of sealing pavers in the next section.

Reasons To Reconsider

Sealing pavers has benefits, but it's important to weigh them against the drawbacks before making a decision.

Sealing can change the color and texture of pavers, which may not be desirable if you prefer their original look.

Sealed pavers require regular upkeep, including resealing every few years, which can be time-consuming and expensive, especially if you hire professionals. Additionally, sealed surfaces may require more frequent cleaning because dirt and stains are more visible.

Sealing your pavers makes it harder to replace pavers or make changes to your outdoor space without disrupting the sealant layer, which can be problematic if you plan future renovations or additions.

Sealing your pavers increases durability and weather resistance, but it also affects appearance, maintenance, and future modifications.

Disadvantages Of Sealing

Reasons To Reconsider

Sealing your paver patio may seem like a good idea at first, but there are side effects to consider.

Sealing your pavers protects them from stains and fading, but you must weigh these benefits against the drawbacks before making a decision. You should consider aesthetic preferences, long-term maintenance, and cost.

Paver Maintenance Challenges

Let's talk about the challenges of maintaining sealed pavers now that we've covered some of the drawbacks.

I've dealt with these maintenance issues, and sealer protects pavers from stains and damage, but it also creates a barrier that makes them harder to clean. Since the sealer prevents liquid from soaking into the stones, stubborn stains on sealed pavers may require more effort and stronger cleaning agents.

Another issue is that sealed pavers can lose their shine over time due to exposure to sunlight and weather conditions. You'll need to reapply sealer regularly to keep your pavers glossy.

If you like natural aging and weathering, sealed pavers may not be for you. They may retain their color for longer, but they won't develop the charming patina and character of unsealed ones.

To summarize my experience with maintaining sealed pavers, sealers create a protective barrier that makes cleaning stained areas difficult; regular reapplication is needed for long-lasting glossiness; and sealed pavers may not age as naturally as unsealed ones. Despite these challenges, many people still seal their pavers to protect their investment and keep them looking great.

Limitations Of Sealed Pavers

Limitations Of Sealed Pavers

Sealed pavers provide protection, but they have limitations.

It's important to know the drawbacks of sealing pavers before sealing them.

Here are some sealed paver drawbacks:

  1. Limited breathability: Sealed pavers create a barrier on the surface that prevents moisture from escaping. While this can be beneficial in terms of protecting against stains and spills, it can also trap moisture within the paver itself. Over time, this trapped moisture can lead to mold growth or damage to the paver structure.
  2. Reduced natural appearance: One of the reasons people choose pavers is for their natural and rustic look. However, sealing them alters their appearance by adding a glossy finish or altering their color. This may not be desirable for those who prefer the authentic look of unsealed pavers.
  3. Maintenance requirements: Sealed pavers require regular maintenance to keep them looking their best. The sealer will wear off over time due to foot traffic, weather conditions, and exposure to UV rays. Reapplying the sealer periodically becomes necessary to maintain its protective qualities.
  4. Potential slipperiness: Sealed pavers can become slippery when wet or if there is an accumulation of dirt or debris on the surface. This poses a safety risk, especially around pools or high-traffic areas where accidents are more likely to occur.

While sealing your pavers protects against stains and increases durability, you must weigh these benefits against potential drawbacks like reduced breathability, altered appearance, increased maintenance needs, and slipperiness.

Sealing your beloved paved surfaces requires balancing preservation and maintaining the natural beauty of your outdoor space. Before making a decision, weigh the pros and cons.

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, while there are some benefits to sealing pavers, it's important to consider the potential disadvantages as well. Sealing pavers can result in negative effects such as a glossy appearance that may not be desired by everyone.

Additionally, the process of sealing and maintaining sealed pavers can be challenging and time-consuming. It's also important to note that sealed pavers have limitations and may not provide long-term protection against all types of damage.

Overall, before deciding whether or not to seal your pavers, it's crucial to weigh the pros and cons carefully. Consider factors such as personal preference for the appearance of the pavers, the amount of maintenance you're willing to undertake, and the specific type of damage you want protection against. Ultimately, making an informed decision will ensure that you choose the best option for your needs and avoid any potential downsides associated with sealing pavers. Now you know what are the disadvantages of sealing pavers.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Long Does The Sealing Process Typically Take?

Paver sealing can take a few hours to a few days, depending on the size of the area and the sealer used. Sealing pavers can improve their appearance and durability, but there are also drawbacks.

Sealing pavers may change their color or texture, making them look less authentic. The sealer may also wear off or discolor, requiring reapplication.

If improperly applied or maintained, sealers can trap moisture on paver surfaces, causing efflorescence or mold growth. It's important to weigh the pros and cons before sealing your pavers.

Can Sealing Pavers Cause Discoloration Or Fade Over Time?

Yes, sealing pavers can cause discoloration or fading over time. While sealing can protect pavers from stains and damage, it can also alter their appearance.

Over time, the sealant may start to wear off unevenly or become discolored due to exposure to sunlight and other environmental factors. This can result in a patchy or faded look that is less visually appealing.

Additionally, some sealants may react with certain types of pavers, causing them to change color or develop a hazy film. It's important to choose the right type of sealant for your specific pavers and regularly maintain and reapply it to minimize any potential discoloration or fading issues.

Are There Any Health Risks Associated With The Chemicals Used In Sealing Pavers?

Sealing pavers can emit volatile organic compounds (VOCs), which can pollute the air and lower indoor air quality. Prolonged exposure to VOCs can cause respiratory issues, headaches, dizziness, and even long-term neurological damage.

Some sealants contain carcinogens like formaldehyde or benzene, so it's important to consider these health risks before sealing your pavers. Consider safer, more environmentally friendly methods.

Will Sealing Pavers Increase The Risk Of Slip And Fall Accidents?

Sealing pavers involves applying a coating on top, which can become slippery when wet or if not properly maintained, making it dangerous for elderly or mobility-impaired people.

Reapplying the sealant is necessary to prevent the creation of uneven surfaces that could cause trips or falls. To reduce the risk of slip and fall accidents, use non-slip sealants or traction-enhancing additives.

Can Sealing Pavers Cause Damage To Surrounding Vegetation Or Landscaping?

Sealing pavers creates a protective layer that blocks water and nutrients from reaching nearby plants, causing them to die or decline.

Before sealing your pavers, consider the impact on the surrounding landscaping. Some sealers contain chemicals that can discolor or burn plants.