10 Best Tile Grout Sealer Reviews – Buying Guide 2020
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Grout sealer is essential for taking care of tile at home. It offers years of protection for tile floors and walls. Grout sealers don’t provide the same level of protection and as such, there is no such thing as one size fits all. Some are mediocre while others are more superior and get the job done.
Choosing a high quality grout sealer is not the easiest task what with the many options available on the market. This comprehensive guide aims to save you time by outlining important factors to consider. We also review the best grout sealers that are praised for meeting the highest standards.
Is it Really Necessary to Use Grout Sealer?
The short answer is yes, you need to use grout sealer at least once every 1-2 years. Because grout is a mixture of cement and sand, it can easily absorb water, bacteria and stains if not sealed regularly. Grout sealer ensures resistance to moisture and helps maintain the texture, consistency of the grout. It also prolongs the life of tiles.
It is worth noting that epoxy-based grout is made from different materials and as such, the need for sealer is not as dire. It is often used in water-prone rooms such as the bathrooms and backsplashes. It has a higher resistance to moisture and stains, and less susceptible to cracking.
Grout sealer should be applied 48-72 hours after installing new tiles. Keep in mind that you shouldn’t apply grout sealer to natural stone or non-glazed tile. The tile will only absorb it and discolor with time.
Our Best Tile Grout Sealer Reviews
1. Miracle Sealants GRT SLR 6-Ounce Grout Sealer
Miracle Sealants is a brand that lives up to its name and provides products that exceed customer expectations. Their GRT SLR 6-Ounce Grout Sealer offers a whole lot of value at a minimal cost. It is equally useful to DIY enthusiasts and contractors, and can handle anything. Even better is that the sealer dries off completely and leaves a smooth surface.
The formulation ensures the stain fighting component remains close the surface, thus providing optimal protection. It is extremely versatile since it can be used for indoor and outdoor surfaces. Miracle Sealants ensures an easy user experience by providing the formulation in a convenient applicator bottle that has an applicator tip.
This sealer is weather resistant and safe to use. It offers additional protection for wall and floor tiles. Each 6-ounce bottle can cover up to 60-115 square feet, an equivalent of 5 square feet for every 14 milliliters.
Highlighted Features :
- Convenient applicator bottle
- Safe and easy to use
- Weather resistant
- 60-115 square feet coverage per 6 ounces
- Indoor and outdoor use
2. Miracle Sealants 511QT6 511 Impregnator Penetrating Sealers Quart
Another best tile sealer offered by Miracle Sealants is the 511QT6 511 Impregnator Penetrating Sealers Quart. Backed by a 20-year satisfaction guarantee, this is a great choice for both indoor and outdoor use. It can be used on a variety of surfaces including ceramic tile, glazed tile, travertine, slate, porcelain tile, sanded grout, terrazzo, stucco and more.
This formula is highly penetrating but still allows the stain fighting component to remain close to the surface. It is highly recommended by DIY enthusiasts and contractors. One of the most appealing attributes of this sealer is that dries completely and leaves a smooth surface.
It should be noted that this grout sealer is oil based and as such, you’ll need a bottle of mineral spirits to clean up the excess when you are done. This helps prevent any problems that may arise due to over application.
Highlighted Features :
- Indoor and outdoor use on variety of surfaces
- Oil and water resistant
- Coverage of 1000 square feet per quart
- Safe for use around food prep areas
- Superior coverage, stain protection and weather resistant
3. Tuff Duck Granite, Grout and Marble Sealer
This is one of our favorite picks for best grout sealer for many reasons. For starters, it can be used on a variety of surfaces including grout, granite, travertine, marble, concrete and even slate. Available at a reasonable price, Tuff Duff Granite, Grout and Marble Sealer is highly rated and popular among hundreds of consumers. It is completely safe to use since it doesn’t contain any chemicals that may damage the appearance of delicate stones.
It penetrates efficiently into the surface and covers up pores to ensure optimal protection. This is a great choice for sealing the shower floors or any other place with increased exposure to water. It offers extensive coverage of 800 square feet. Compared to StoneTech, this sealer uses twice the active ingredient for more protection with one coat.
It offers protection for up to 3 years on exterior surfaces and 5 years on interior surfaces. You can purchase this sealer ins a 22-ounce or 1-gallon bottle depending on your needs.
Highlighted Features :
- Formulated with water-based fluoro-polymers
- Unique stain protect for porous natural stone and grout
- Compatible with marble, grout, slate, granite etc.
- Coverage of 800 square feet per quart
- 3 year protection for outdoor surfaces
- 5-year protection for indoor surfaces
4. The Floor Guys Grout & Granite Penetrating Sealer
Designed to protect against water and oil based stains, this is one of the best grout sealers for shower floors. It is used by both beginners and professionals to protect different types surfaces including grout, slate, limestone and travertine. Being a water-based sealer, you won’t have to worry about odors. It penetrates deep into the surface of the stone or grout tile, leaving it smooth and stain-free.
Using this sealer is incredibly easy since all you need is a paint brush taped to a broom pole. You’ll have to let it sit for five minutes after application before mopping the remaining sealer off. This is a professional strength sealer that based on fluoro-polymer formulation.
Highlighted Features :
- Easy to apply and long lasting
- Can be used on stone and grout tiles
- Protects against water and oil based stains
- Fluoro-polymer based sealer
5. Black Diamond Nex-Gen Natural Stone Penetrating Sealer
This grout sealer can be used for granite, travertine, concrete, tile, slate, marble, limestone and brick floors. It comes in a 16-ounce bottle, but you can also opt for a 1-pint, 2-pints or 6-pints bottle. It offers maximum protection against ink, wine, coffee, germs and grease stains.The Black Diamond Nex-Gen Natural Stone Penetrating Sealer provides up to three years of protection for outdoor surfaces and 5+ years protection for indoor surfaces. It doesn’t emit any strong fumes, hence safe for use around food prep areas. Using this sealer is easy since all you need to do is apply, let it sit for 5-10 minutes then wipe off the excess.
Highlighted Features :
- Versatile sealer for slate, granite, grout, limestone and more
- Protects against stains
- Up to 3 years for outdoor surfaces
- 5 year protection for indoor surfaces
- Premium quality and odorless sealer
6. StoneTech Heavy Duty Grout Sealer
StoneTech has been a trusted brand for many years and is known for delivering products that deliver results. Their Heavy Duty Grout Sealer is made using water-based formulation and fluoro-chemicals to ensure protection against stains or fading. Its performance is impeccable when it comes to increasing the longevity of grout.
This sealer dries up in less than 10 minutes and requires a curing time of 24 hours. You need a soft cotton cloth to wipe off the excess sealer after application. It penetrations deep into the surface of the tile, ensuring that stain preventing components remain near the top.
It has an impressive coverage capacity of 15-100 square feet per quart. In addition, this sealer provides consistent protection for three 3 years on outdoor surfaces and 5 years on indoor tiles. It is a particularly good choice for maintaining natural look on masonry, grout and stone tiles.
Highlighted Features :
- 15-100 square feet coverage per quart
- Made with advanced water-based fluoro chemicals
- Natural look protection for stone and grout
- 3-year protection for outdoor tiles
- 5-year protection for indoor tiles
- Advanced penetrating microbond protection
7. Grout-Eez Super Heavy Duty Tile & Grout Cleaner
If you are looking to quickly destroy dirt and germs on grout, the Grout-Eez Super Heavy Duty Tile & Grout Cleaner should be a top contender. Offered as a 2-pack, this is a professional strength grout cleaner that removes dirt and stains from porcelain, subway and ceramic tiles. It comes with a free grout brush for convenience and easier cleaning.
The brush is V-shaped and attaches to any broom pole. Each bottle of this sealer covers up to 250 square feet. As such, the 2-pack special allows you to clean 500 square feet of tile. DIY and professional cleaners love this sealer because it is easy to use, works fast and delivers lasting results. It is also backed by a 30-day money back guarantee.
Highlighted Features :
- 2 bottles and free v-shaped brush
- Cleans porcelain, subway and ceramic tiles
- Coverage of 250 square feet per bottle
- Easy to use and lasting results
- 30-day money back guarantee
8. Aqua Mix Sealer’s Choice Gold Quart, 32 Ounce
Aqua Mix is one of the most popular brands in the industry and has been providing premium products for many years, Their Sealer’s Choice Gold Quart is made with a low VOC and water-based formulation. In addition to being manufactured by a reputable brand, this sealer offers incredible results for DIY and professional projects.
This is a great choice for sealing granite, travertine, slate, porcelain, Saltillo, masonry, marble, limestone and cement. It can be used around food prep areas and works great as a pre-grouting sealer. Even more notable is that it provides optimal stain protection and helps maintain the natural look of porous tile. You can use it for indoor and outdoor surfaces, and can offer protection for up to 15 years.
Highlighted Features :
- Up to 15 years of protection
- Good for sealing porous tile and grout
- Ideal for indoor and outdoor applications
- Can be used as pre-grouting sealer
- Water-based formula low on VOC
9. Stone Pro Pro Sealer
The Stone Pro Pro Sealer is an all-purpose impregnating sealer. It can be used on different types of surfaces including marble, grout, travertine, tile and more. It is a non-flammable formulation that is completely harmless and safe for use around food preparation areas. It offers optimal protection again oil-based and water-based stains, while ensuring that the tile surface remains smooth.
This sealer is made using the patented Advanced Fluoropolymer Protect and Hybrid Carrier Technology. This makes for a solvent based sealer that is VOC compliant. It doesn’t affect the color of tiles so you don’t have to worry about yellowing or UV damage.
Highlighted Features :
- Solvent-based and VOC compliant
- Impregnating grout sealer
- Ideal for marble, granite, grout, travertine and tile
- Protection against oil and waterborne stains
10. Aqua Mix Grout Sealer Dual Protection
Concluding our grout sealer reviews is the Aqua Mix Grout Sealer Dual Protection, which boasts superior resistance to contaminants. It is highly penetrating and leaves the surface smooth without discoloring it. The sealer is capable of repelling water-based and oil-based contaminants, hence great at inhibiting mold and mildew.
It is worth noting that the Aqua Mix Grout Sealer Dual Protection outperforms silicone sealers and can last for up to five years. You can also use it as a routine cleaner to get rid of food stains and grease. Being a low maintenance product, this sealer is a great choice for cementitious sanded and unsanded porous grout joints. It works well on ceramic tile installations too. The sealer allows for vapor transmission, hence ideal for indoor and outdoor applications.
Highlighted Features :
- Water based grout sealer
- Up to 5 years of protection
- Outperforms many silicone sealers
- Ideal for sanded and un-sanded porous grout joints
- Repels oil-based and acid-based contaminants
Things to Consider Before Buying
Choosing the right product to seal your tile is crucial to longevity and maintaining its appearance. Making the wrong sealer can cause you irreparable damages and cost you a lot of money installing new tiles.
There are many factors to consider when buying the best tile sealer such as type of tile, performance expectations, type of sealer and more.
Types of sealers
(i). Penetrating sealers
As the name suggests, penetrating sealers penetrate the surface of tile and impregnate it, leaving the surface smooth. They never peel off or change the coefficient of friction. There are two levels offered by penetrating sealers i.e. standard and premium.
Standard penetrating sealers, also known as hydrophobic sealers, protect against stains due to beverages and dirt. They aren’t ideal for use around food preparation surfaces since they hardly provide protection against oil-based contaminants. They are cheap.
Premium penetrating sealers are also called oilophopic sealers and offer high-performance protection from oil-based contaminants and beverages. They are an ideal choice for food prep surfaces, but come at a higher cost.
(ii). Topical coatings
These sit on top of the tile, creating a low-sheen appearance. Some refer to them as sacrificial coatings because they have a tendency to peel off after a while. They require regular application and more than one coat is required for adequate protection.
Permanent topical coatings are made from epoxies or polyurethanes. Because they are extremely difficult to remove, professionals don’t recommend them for grout tiles. Strippable coatings are made from polymers like polyethylene and acrylics. Most are water-based and incredibly easy to remove from grout.
Professionals generally don’t recommend topical coatings for a number of reasons. For starters, they are not easy to apply. They need to be applied often for optimal results and exposing them to UV rays can cause yellowing.
(iii). Enhancing sealers
These are specially formulated to enhance the natural appearance and veining of stone tiles. They make the surface of natural stone and similar materials appear more vibrant without being glossy. Like penetrating sealants, they provide premium protection against oil-based contaminants.
(iv). Membrane grout sealers
These are particularly useful when enhancing the color of grout or adding a harsh pigment. They are ideal for use in areas that aren’t prone to moisture exposure such as the entryway. Membrane sealers should not be used in the bathroom or shower since the constant exposure to water won’t allow for drying. They end up trapping the moisture in, which could lead to more damage. You have to apply membrane sealer at least once every two years.
Material of tiles
The type of grout sealer you choose largely depends on the material of your tiles. You may not need to apply a sealant to porcelain or ceramic tiles at home, but the same cannot be said for a high foot traffic area. A small amount of penetrating sealant is required to seal the same types of tiles in a restaurant. Sealing is also a must when using unglazed tiles. Penetrating sealers are great for unglazed tiles and natural stones, especially before grouting since they prevent staining.
Versatility is always an attractive quality in any product and grout sealers are not an exception. While the main priority is to get an effective sealer, it’s good to ensure that it can be used for multiple functions. This is particularly important if you are purchasing more than a quart. Look for something that can be used for grout, marble, travertine, cement, stone and other materials. Buying a multi-purpose sealer saves you money and allows you to use the same product for different projects at home.
An important factor to consider is how long a sealer can provide protection. Most grout sealers provide up to three years of protection for outdoor surfaces and 5 years for indoor surfaces. With that in mind, consider a sealer that lasts for 3-5 years before reapplication is required.
Oil or water resistant sealer
Because oil and water have very different properties, finding a sealer that is resistant to both is incredibly difficult. However, making a choice between an oil and water resistant sealer is easy. Oil resistant sealers are great for kitchens and food preparation areas where the risk of spilling oil is high.
A water resistant sealer is best utilized in bathrooms and other areas of the house where spilled drinks are common. If you love hot baths, you need a strong water resistant sealer since the risk of steam penetration is high.
Some sealers are capable of adding color to grout. They are a great choice for adding an aesthetic flair to the room. They are generally available as non-penetrating sealants and in this case, you shouldn’t sacrifice durability for a little bit of color.
There are different ways to apply grout sealer and as such, it’s important to know the best application method for prospective sealers. Keep in mind that some sealants require more curing time and take longer to dry. Depending on how much time you have to work on a project, this is something you should consider before making a purchase.
Can You Put New Grout Over Old Grout?
The short answer is yes. Grungy grout looks ugly and leads to serious problems if not fixed right away. It makes it easier for water to seep into the joints, hence discoloration. And while you don’t have re-grout the entire floor or wall, there are a few things you should know before getting started.
Putting new grout over old grout gives the surface a new look and makes it more functional. A new coat of grout improves resistance to water and other impurities. It is important that you use the same type of grout as the old, or you’ll have to redo everything in less than a year.
You need to scrape off some of the old grout before getting started. You don’t need to get rid of all of it, just the dirty and crumbling bits. Look for problems that may have caused the old grout to start crumbling or become dirty and moldy, then solve them right away.
Once the scraped the surface, vacuum all the nooks and cranies to remove any remaining dirt. Mix the new grout as directed on the package and use a grout float to spread it over the floor or wall. Make sure you get some grout into the deeper places and joints for lasting results. Use a damp sponge to clean the surface after you’re done and again after the surface has dried. Buff with a clean towel and after a week, apply a grout sealer.
How To Apply Grout Sealer?
Make sure that the freshly applied grout is completely dry. If applying over old grout, ensure that it is clean and free of debris. The grout lines shouldn’t have any signs of cracks or crumbling. Use a clean, wet rag to wipe off the excess grout.
Start applying grout sealer from a fixed point, preferably an end tile. Use systematic and smooth motions to apply a fresh coat over every part of the grout. Be careful not to miss any grout line or joint. Using a left-to-right pattern may lower the risk of missing any joints. Allow one hour for the sealer to dry then apply a second coat. Once it’s completely dry, drip some water on the sealant and see if it forms a bead. If it doesn’t, repeat the above process until the test is successful.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Is epoxy grout better than regular grout?
In some ways, epoxy grout is better than regular grout. Unlike regular grout, epoxy grout is highly durable and waterproof. This is because epoxy grout is made from a combination of resins and water, making it better suited to harsh cleaning products.
2. Why seal my tile and grout?
Being a porous material, grout is highly absorbent. Applying a seal creates a protective barrier, ensuring that the tile and grout doesn’t absorb dirt and spills. It also leaves the surface looking new and glossy.
3. When should you re-seal grout?
Applying a fresh coat of grout reseal every now and then is always necessary for long-term results. The frequency of re-sealing grout depends on the amount of foot traffic, cleaning agents used to clean the surface, and how often you clean the grout/tile surface. A simple water test can tell you when it’s time to reseal. Sprinkle some water onto the surface and if it penetrates quickly, then you should reseal the grout.
4. How long does grout sealer take to dry?
The best grout sealers for shower take about two hours to dry under normal conditions. Depending on grout resistant to moisture and other contaminants as well as sealer used, you should allow for up to 24 hours of curing time.
Choosing the best tile grout sealer is extremely essential to maintaining a fresh look in your home. It helps improve the longevity of tile surfaces while maintaining their natural appearance surface.
All products reviewed above offer decent sealing, lasting results and optimal protection. They also come at reasonable prices and most are multifunctional.
You can also refer to the buyer’s guide section for more on what you should consider when choosing a grout sealer. Type of sealer, tile material and application method are some of the essential factors to keep in mind when choosing the best tile sealer. That said, we hope this guide proves helpful for your search.