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How To Fix Concrete Sealer Bubbles 5/5 (5)

Concrete Sealer Bubbles

Concrete Sealer Bubbles

Solvent based Acrylic Concrete Sealers are designed to enhance, darken, and give a sheen to decorative concrete surfaces.  Unfortunately when applied incorrectly or over applied you may have issues with “bubbles” forming in the sealer. This typically happens to Stamped Concrete or smooth decorative concrete surfaces.

When a solvent-based acrylic sealer is applied, some of the sealer penetrates into the porous concrete. If the application is too thick, or if too many coatings are applied, the solvent is not able to evaporate before the sealer dries. When that happens, the solvent gets trapped and eventually creates enough pressure that it forces its way out, creating the bubbles.

Tips For Applying a Solvent Acrylic Sealer:

  • Follow the manufacturer’s directions on the proper spread rate
  • Do not over apply. Adding too much sealer is not better and may create issues
  • Concrete porosity differs. The more porous the concrete is, the more sealer can be applied
  • If applying more than 1 coat, allow the coatings to dry thoroughly between applications

So what to do if you get the sealer “bubbles? Here are some steps to take to try and remedy the situation.

  1. Sweep or blow off the dirt and grime
  2. Wait until there is not any direct sunlight. Usually late in the day is best.
  3. Applying a solvent to reset the sealer and “melt” the bubbles.
  4. Let the sealer sit overnight and dry properly

Note: The bubbles may still come back. In many cases, the above steps will fix the issue. If this does not fix the bubbles from reforming, you will need to strip off all of the sealer and start over.

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39 responses to “How To Fix Concrete Sealer Bubbles”

  1. kandy says:

    2 years ago we had steps poured and a aggregate patio. the steps were poured in a colored concrete. when they came back to seal it all it started to sprinkle so they did everything in a hurry and left. they told us to do this process again the next year. we tried but many mistakes were made and the end results is it bubbled and now looks pitted, dull and dirty. can you tel me how to fix and what product to use to give it all the wet look.

    • Concrete Sealer Help says:

      Kandy, most likely you will need to strip all the sealer off and start over. Do a search online for \”Concrete Sealer Strippers\”. Once removed you could use the SuperSeal25 or SuperSeal30

  2. kandy says:

    will this provide the wet look i would like and can they be tinted?

  3. Eleanor says:

    I had my pool patio done over with decorative concrete in a stone pattern, various colors about 2 yrs ago. Last week a bubble popped up, opened and you can see right through below the cool deck that was underneath it. It is about 2 inches in circumference. I think the company is gone now, I can't find them. How do I fix this and I know you don't have a crystal ball but can I expect this to happen all over the patio?

  4. Denise says:

    I have a 30' stamped concrete driveway that is pitting and crumbling in different places. It's been sealed regularly. Any suggestions?

    • Concrete Sealer Help says:

      Denise, you cannot fix or stop the pitting with sealing. Nothing will stop this. It is a bad install. Sorry 🙁

  5. DeeDee says:

    I paid someone to stain and seal my new concrete floor and it is terribly bubbled. Is it possible to somehow sand the sealer off, or down? I really don't want to have to strip it. The drywall and doors are already installed.


  6. Concrete Sealer Help says:

    Elaine, we have only seen solvent based sealers create bubbles.

  7. Concrete Sealer Help says:

    Elaine, probably not. Sorry.

  8. Concrete Sealer Help says:

    Jody, the only fix is the xylene or to strip it all off and start over.

  9. michelle5582 says:

    we recently resealed our stamp patio and today woke up the white patches and lots of bubbles, how do we fix this?

  10. Diana Morgan says:

    I have stains on my patio pavers. Before I seal it, I want to remove the stains. Some of the stains are from
    teak wood sealer. I tried muriatic acid and a few other things and nothing has worked. Any suggestions?

  11. Smithworks Concrete says:

    We rolled sealer on new driveway, ended up with terrible streaking, sunny areas are worse. Will a second coat help?

  12. Jill says:

    Sealed paver driveway w solvent based sealer, looks good. Ran out on second spray coat in one area. Came back to finish that area a few days later which was above 90 degrees the area I finished turned white. Then took a paint brush with Zylene and spread on affected pavers. They then turned much briter than everywhere else. Any suggestion on how to fix?

    • Concrete Sealer Help says:

      Spray xylene on entire area when done to even out the appearance. Use a pump sprayer.

      • Chris O'loughlan says:

        The Xylene must of melted the internals of the spray bottle I used it was only in the bottle for 2 hours now the spray bottle doesn't work , just saying

  13. BOBBY says:

    applied a new supposedly state of the art sealer called black diamond today. it is a water based acrylic with 43% solids. wet the driveway, backrolled after spraying and sealer left streaks or dark lines where sealer overlapped, sealer sat for 30 seconds before backrolling. rep said it dried too quickly and it was too hot but it said nothing about high temps on the label, just be above 55 degrees. any suggestions on how to get rid of the lines without stripping..

    • Concrete Sealer Help says:

      You will most likely need to strip. Did they suggest a way to fix? They have contacted this website about trying their sealer and we were hesitant. Let us know how it goes.

  14. LSR says:

    Had a new stamped concrete patio installed last week. 1 week later bubbles started showing up. What causes this and how do we fix it?

  15. Dina says:

    I'm preparing to use SS30 on exposed aggregate concrete. There is a chance of rain tomorrow. Most of the patio is exposed but not all of it. How long does it take to dry, and if it rains within 12 hours, will that be fatal?

  16. Michael says:

    Sealed a stamped patio and sidewalk. Used honeycomb 300 temputure was perfect and it bubbled up very bad in spots.. Then went over with 3 coats of xylene.all over the bubbles were gone.. The customer called back 5 hours later and said their was bubbles.we went back to the job and the bubbles were everywhere and alot worse. Is my only option now to strip it and start all over?? Thanks for answered!!

  17. Patty says:

    Put 1st coat of 300sb sealant on slate tables. Turned out lovely. Spouse suggested 2nd coat. 2nd coat now has bubbling and fibers. Can I use very fine sand paper/sponge or fine steel wool to "knock it down" before reapplying? There was tack cloth residue on table before 2nd coat applied. Really hoping to avoid stripping…☺

    • Concrete Sealer Help says:

      Not sure if that will work and it may just repeat when you apply another coat. Might want to contact the manufacturer for some help.

  18. Brent Robillard says:

    I have a stamped concrete curb poured in two sections, on the second section there was no release powder used. The colours are now different, the contractor said he will add the release before sealing to match the colour. Will this work? Or do I need to use a different method to match the colours?

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