Treat and Prevent Unsightly Leaf Stains on Your Paving Stones this Fall!
As you may have noticed during autumn, once the leaves start falling they can leave behind leaf stains on concrete sidewalks. This staining can happen to your pavers too. Protect your hard earned investment and prevent those unsightly stains by sealing your paver patio, walkway, or driveway!
Leaves and pine cones contain organic pigments that give them their color and when they decay they release a dye referred to as tannins. The word tannins originated from the German word for Oak tree and it was commonly used to tan leather. Tannins are also responsible for turning water brown when you steep a cup of tea. The staining from leaves occurs mainly in autumn when the leaves are decaying causing the tannins to react with the alkaline found in concrete.
How do you prevent leaf stains on concrete?
Sealing your pavers with a siloxane/silane sealant will help combat the staining. But bear in mind that not all sealers are created equal. Some sealants just create a film over the pavers and do not provide a breathable barrier for moisture to escape. We recommend choosing a water-based sealant with a siloxane/silane blend.
Why choose a silane/siloxane blend?
Siloxane based sealers penetrate deep into the capillaries of concrete pavers and brick. The chemical bond that the siloxane and silane creates inside the microscopic pores acts as a resin. It minimizes the sizes of the capillaries so that it is smaller than a water molecule which provides the repellency.
Penetration deep below the surface also means that your pavers will not lose protection if they are in a high traffic area. Sealers that sit on top on the paver can be eroded with heavy foot or vehicular traffic.
Siloxane/silane blends will also be 100% breathable. Concrete can absorb water 2 ways, from the surface and from the soil beneath it. These sealers will allow interior water to evaporate while also keeping surface water from penetrating into the paver. This is very important because sealers that do not allow the paver to breathe will trap moisture which can cause water to freeze and break the paver or brick during the colder months.
Sealing your pavers will act as a supplement to prevent the tannins from penetrating deep into the stone. You should take proactive measures to maintain your landscape by raking leaves before the pigments penetrate too far deep into the pores of the concrete and power wash stains whenever possible. The longer you keep the leaves on your patio to rot the harder it will be to remove the stains.
If it is too late and you need a detergent cleaner to help get those stains out we carry Paver Clean Paver Wash® by SRW.
Creating curb appeal with hardscaping is a big investment so protect it the right way the first time by choosing high quality, professional grade sealers. When sealing your hardscape be sure to follow the manufacturer’s directions very carefully and wear protective clothing and eyewear.
TLC Supply carries several professional grade detergents and breathable siloxane/silane sealers that can help prevent leaf stains. We also carry a wide selection of premium pavers from Techo Bloc, Genest, Belgard and Cambridge Pavers. Please visit our website to see even more hardscape and masonry products ranging from bluestone,granite,brick,natural stone,block,sand,cement, and much more!
Before you go check this out! You may even like our post on Efflorescence Causes, Removal, and Prevention.
The experts at TLC Supply are happy to answer any of your project questions, just give us a shout! Leave your questions or comments below.
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