A high-quality driveway is a great way to add to your curb appeal as well as to protect your vehicles from unnecessary damage. However, if you have recently invested in having a new driveway installed, then you know that it can be a significant investment. Using a driveway sealer will help to protect your driveway from damage caused by exposure to chemicals, UV rays, adverse weather conditions, de-icing salts, foot traffic, and regular vehicle abuse.
These treatments are available in a wide range of price ranges and finishes, with options that suit any home. We put this guide together to help you choose the right sealer for your driveway. Read on to find out about the different types of driveway sealers available and which products we recommend.
The Backyard Boss Top Driveway Sealer for 2021
|Jetcoat 10-Year Driveway Sealer||Check The Price!|
|Foundation Armor Professional Grade Concrete & Masonry Sealer||Check The Price!|
|Black Diamond Stoneworks Wet Look Natural Stone Sealer||Check The Price!|
|Eco Advance Concrete/Masonry Siloxane Water Repellent||Check The Price!|
|Road Rescue Asphalt Repair||Check The Price!|
Why You Can Trust Us
My husband and I take pride in our home. For this reason, we always research and learn new opportunities and DIY possibilities to maintain and improve the function of our home and the overall curb appeal. With a new driveway, we dedicated ourselves to learning the best ways to keep it looking new.
While I didn’t personally have a lot of experience going into this learning process, I came out of it with a much better understanding of the work required to maintain my driveway appropriately. In this guide, I combine the information that I learned with the experience of the Backyard Boss team and the reviews shared by other customers.
Best Driveway Sealer for Asphalt Surfaces
Why We Like It: A durable and long-lasting sealant, the Jetcoat 10-Year Driveway Sealer works to protect your driveway for an extended period compared to other options on the market.
The polymer-modified and emulsion-based sealer is designed to work on all types of asphalt pavement and blacktop surfaces, protecting your driveway effectively from the elements. If you want to experience the full strength of the product, apply a second coat within 24 hours or after the first coat has dried and is smooth to the touch.
This sealant is fortified with sand, allowing it to reliably fill smaller cracks and holes in the driveway for an all-in-one solution. It is easy to apply using a rubber squeegee or brush, with a single 5-gallon pail covering 250-350 sq. ft. After application, allow your driveway to cure for 24 hours before use.
Who Should Buy It: Jetcoat 10-Year Driveway Sealer is a great solution for first-time DIYers with an asphalt driveway.
Best Driveway Sealer for Concrete Surfaces
Why We Like It: A water-based sealer that creates a hydrophobic barrier within your concrete, brick, or masonry driveway, Foundation Armor Professional Grade Concrete & Masonry Sealer is capable of reducing the absorption of water on the surface of your driveway by up to 95%.
It works to protect your driveway from damage such as cracking and pitting. It is an important step in the prevention of concrete degradation, extending the life of your driveway.
This sealer is incredibly easy to apply by using a sprayer or a roller and rolling pan. While it does create a barrier on the surface, it does not change the appearance making it a great choice for those interested in a more natural final look. It is a water-based sealant with low volatile organic compounds, meaning that it’s a safer alternative for those tackling a DIY project. After application, it will offer protection for up to 7 – 10 years.
Who Should Buy It: If you are looking for a reliable and easy-to-apply driveway sealer for your concrete or brick driveway, the Foundation Armor Professional Grade Concrete & Masonry Sealer is a great choice.
Best Gloss Driveway Sealer
Not only does this driveway sealer protect your concrete or stone driveway from moisture and damage, but it also dries with a beautiful glossy finish.
Why We Like It: A water-based sealer, the Black Diamond Stoneworks Wet Look Natural Stone Sealer contains low levels of volatile organic compounds, making it a safe and non-toxic option for DIYers.
The sealer is designed to work on concrete, pavers, brick, masonry, and slate, drying with a glossy wet-look finish. It should not, however, be used on polished granite or marble. The sealant does not change or darken the surface of most natural stones, preserving the natural look. If your driveway has decorative elements, this is still a workable option. It is because you can also use it on aggregate, stamped, colored, or decorative surfaces.
It is an easy-to-use sealer for those that are taking on their first DIY project. It can be applied by spray, brush, or roller, depending on your personal preference. Made in the United States, it is backed with a 100% money-back guarantee. It can be purchased in a variety of sizes ranging from a 1-gallon container to a 5-gallon pail.
Who Should Buy It: Homeowners that prefer the wet look of a glossy driveway sealer should consider the Black Diamond Stoneworks Wet Look Natural Stone Sealer.
Best Eco-Friendly Driveway Sealer
This driveway sealer is a water-based commercial grade formula that is non-toxic and eco-friendly, safe for use around landscape plantings.
Why We Like It: A commercial-grade waterproofer, Eco Advance Concrete/Masonry Siloxane Water Repellent works to effectively protect concrete, brick, stucco, natural stone, synthetic stone, EIFS, pavers, and more from the elements.
This sealer will keep your driveway safe from water damage, mold, mildew, oil, stains, de-icing salts, chemicals, and more. Unlike the other options on this list, you must apply it via sprayer with no other options. However, you can do this with any standard garden pump sprayer.
The main selling point for this driveway sealer is the fact that it’s completely eco-friendly. The water-based formula is non-toxic and non-flammable, safe for people, plants, and pets. It makes it a great choice for those who have landscape plantings around the perimeter of their driveway and homes with pets that may have access to the driveway and surrounding area.
Who Should Buy It: Eco Advance Concrete/Masonry Siloxane Water Repellent is a great solution for those concerned with the potential environmental impact of their DIY projects.
Best Driveway Repair Product
Why We Like It: Available in a variety of different size packages, the Road Rescue Asphalt Repair is your go-to repair solution for driveways with cracks, pitting, and potholes.
Made from environmentally friendly natural asphaltic rock, this product contains zero volatile organic compounds, making it a safe option for families and pet-friendly homes. A single pack of this product can cover up to 7 sq ft. It is more than most other competitors. It can bond with both asphalt and concrete, making it a universal solution for all driveways.
Offering permanent contractor-grade repair, the asphaltic stone is easy to apply. Simply clean the surface of your driveway, fill any holes or cracks with the product, and then, using your vehicle, drive over the surface, compacting the product into the space for a durable and reliable fix. Application only takes 1 minute with no mixing or specialized equipment necessary. You can apply it in nearly any weather, including wet or dry weather, hot or cold temperatures, and it is immediately traffic ready.
Who Should Buy It: If your driveway is older or worn and requires repair of cracks and potholes before sealing, the Road Rescue Asphalt Repair is an easy-to-use and reliable solution.
Why Should You Seal Your Driveway?
If you have been researching the prices and work involved with sealing your driveway, you may be wondering if it’s worth the hassle. Is it a necessary step, or will your driveway hold up just fine without it? After paying for someone to install your new driveway, sealing it is a great way to protect your investment.
Over time, your driveway, whether it’s an asphalt driveway or concrete, will start showing signs of wear and tear. It includes stains and fading color, leaving it looking dated, as well as cracks that compromise its integrity. While sealing your driveway isn’t going to give it an infinite lifespan, it will protect it from damage from chemicals, exposure to the sun’s harsh UV rays, and the impact of the freeze-thaw cycles (especially in areas that see dramatic temperature changes).
If your driveway is left exposed to the elements or untreated, it can lead to a big headache down the road. Small cracks and chips in the surface of the driveway can spider, threatening its integrity. It can lead to breakage and potholes. Not only does this harms the curb appeal of your home, but it can also cause damage to your vehicle if left unaddressed.
Types of Driveway Sealers
Mold and mildew are two of the biggest issues that homeowners face when it comes to a concrete driveway. The risk of these problems increases if you live in an area that experiences a higher volume of rain than usual or high humidity. The mold inhibitor creates a protective layer that prevents mold development, mildew, fungi, and algae by sealing the driveway from the additional moisture. These sealers won’t work to remove the existing mold and mildew from your driveway. The surface should be thoroughly cleaned with bleach and allowed to dry fully before application.
Containing mainly asphalt cement and is designed for asphalt driveways. This sealer requires no special heating equipment and involves fewer fumes than other options, making it a popular choice for DIYers. Being made from the same material as the driveway itself, it blends to fill cracks and patch holes easily, offering a more seamless appearance. When finished, it creates a hard, durable surface that can last up to 5 or 6 years.
Coal Tar Sealers
Unlike asphalt-based sealers, this type of sealer requires industrial heating equipment to be applied. It also contains large volumes of toxic volatile organic compounds (VOCs) requiring protective clothing and chemical masks. For this reason, it must be applied by a professional. These sealers last, on average, up to 4 years before needing to be replaced.
Due to the chemical nature of this type of sealer, some states and individual communities have banned its use. Make sure to research your local bylaws before selecting a coal tar sealer for your driveway.
Fill and Seal
Designed specifically to fill cracks and holes in your driveway, fill and seal products are a great choice if you are repairing a driveway with existing damage. They are made from sand or sand-like ingredients, allowing the small particles to easily make their way into even the smallest cracks, while the sealant works to create a smooth, durable surface that can last up to 3 years. It is a low-cost, DIY solution for those looking to extend the life of an older driveway.
Plain or surface sealers are designed to protect a driveway that is in new or optimal shape. It is DIY-friendly, requiring the use of a specialized paint roller to roll the thick black liquid onto the surface of your driveway, creating a durable surface that can last up to 3 years. This option is also known as a blacktop driveway sealer due to the smooth black finish that it leaves on your driveway. However, its liquid texture is not effective in patching any damage such as cracks or potholes.
Unlike asphalt-based driveway sealers, epoxy sealers do not penetrate the surface of your driveway at all. Instead, they create a hard layer of epoxy on the surface of your driveway, sealing it from damage with a gloss finish. The nature of epoxy means that it is often slippery on the surface, and it comes at a higher price point than an acrylic sealer (the closest alternative). However, it can be used to create unique designs and finishes on the driveway that aren’t otherwise available, making it a fun choice for those exploring unique driveway landscaping and decoration ideas.
These sealants are not breathable like other options on this list. While this may seem like a positive point, it can cause more damage long term. While it will work to prevent moisture from reaching the surface of the driveway, there is also the moisture that comes up from the ground below to consider. Trapped by the sealant, this can cause concrete degradation and deterioration.
Another option for a more decorative result and fun color enhancement, acrylic sealers can be purchased in a wide variety of colors and finishes for any home aesthetic. They are designed to stand up to the elements, including exposure to UV rays and temperature fluctuations. Unlike an epoxy sealer, an acrylic sealer is more breathable after application, allowing for better moisture management. They are also considered to be an environmentally friendly solution, unlike many types of sealers.
Common Driveway Sealing Mistakes
If you are taking on your driveway sealing project as a DIY, there are a few common mistakes that you should avoid. Not only will this help you to achieve a better final product, but it can help you to avoid unnecessary additional expenses to correct your mistakes.
Take the time to thoroughly stir and blend your sealant before applying. Many of the ingredients in driveway sealants will separate over time, which can decrease its effectiveness. You want to take the time necessary to ensure that you have a consistent mixture.
Do not apply your sealer directly on a dirty surface. Take the time to thoroughly clean your driveway, removing not only dirt and grime but also any evidence of mold, mildew, algae, and fungi. Any substances on the surface of your driveway at the time of sealing will prevent your driveway sealer from adhering to the driveway itself. It will greatly decrease the length of time the sealant will last before it needs to be reapplied.
Read instructions carefully to ensure that you have ALL necessary tools for application. While it may be tempting to save money by making do with tools that you already have at home, using the wrong tools could be a costly mistake. Each sealer has its unique application process that should be followed without exception for best results.
How We Picked
With a wide variety of different products on the market, we wanted to explore options for both asphalt and concrete driveways, the two most common materials. We carefully researched and explored all options, looking for ease-of-use, durability, cost, versatility, and overall impact on the environment. After narrowing our list significantly using these factors, we then looked at the reviews of other customers to get a better idea of real-world experiences both during application and over time.
From here, we were able to identify five products that we believe stood out above the rest for application and protection. Each of these products stood out for its intended use, maintaining the integrity and appearance of your driveway over time.
Our Pick for Best Driveway Sealer Is…
Selecting the right driveway sealer for your home will depend on your driveway material. However, many factors and considerations carry over from one product to the next. With this in mind, there was one product that stood out to the members of the Backyard Boss team for its price point, durability, and longevity.
With asphalt offering a cost-effective solution to driveway installation, it is a popular choice among homeowners. The Jetcoat 10-Year Driveway Sealer offers a long-lasting and highly reliable level of protection for asphalt driveways while also filling smaller cracks and pits to save time and money on additional products. The company is well-known in the industry, with over 50-years of experience and an exceptional reputation.
That being said, we firmly believe that you will be happy with the final result from any of our featured products.