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You think a sealer has "failed"?

This discussion applies to all manufacturer's sealers.

First we need to define what you mean.  Did the "sealer" fail or did the "seal" fail?  The sealer is the product, the "seal" is the condition of the project.

1. Did the "sealer" fail?

If it is a non-Aldon sealer, the answer is maybe.  A good quality sealer should not fail, however, there are many lesser quality sealers being sold and they are designed for low price, not long term performance.

If it is an Aldon sealer, the answer is no it did not fail. See below.

2. Did the "seal" fail?

That can happen no matter what sealer was used.  This does not mean the "sealer" lost its performance.  It can mean the substrate:

  • has moved (base movement, thermal contraction/expansion) that breaks sealer bond.
  • cracked (large or micro-cracks not visible to the eye)
  • had contact with something that breaks down the sealer.  This depends on the sealer formula catagory and usually can be determined from the sealer label.
  • had dust or other contaminents that interfered with the sealer bond and/or penetration.
  • is showing the eventual signs of a sealer application that was not done properly, or could not be done properly. For example:
    • a penetrating sealer applied as a coating and not enough liquid to penetrate down.
    • a substrate that was thought to be absorbent but was reduced or eliminated absorption (grouts modified with additives, tile that was pre-sealed prior to grouting, etc.)
    • something that interfered with the sealer's bond to the surface.

Remember - Just because a project has had sealer applied does not mean the job is sealed properly and long term.