Difference between sealer and floor finish?

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Wondering what is the difference between water based sealer and water based floor finish, all things being equal.

Lindy A.'s picture
Lindy A.
A sealer shields/protects the

A sealer shields/protects the concrete from foreign matter intrusion for an extended period of time (depending on the physical properties of the type/formulation selected for use), achieving an adhesive, mechanical, penetrating bond; along with providing stain and common chemical resistance, as well as enhancing the color of the decorative concrete surface it is applied over.

A finish coat, is typically construed to me, a temporary sacrificial wax (there are various types of wax ranging from common diluted mop on, heavy use/commercial surface burnished/buffed types, etc). Finish coats of wax are applied on a majority of indoor flooring surfaces to allow for greater ease of cleaning maintenance, to protect and prolong the life of the sealer, deter scuff marks from shoe soles or rubber tipped furniture/fixture legs, etc. Wax finish coats can be quickly and easily reapplied if/when deemed necessary as part of the residential or commercial property owners ordinary care and maintenance program.

Lindy A.

it basically comes down to

it basically comes down to durability, strippability, and ease of application.

sealers are more durable, harder to strip, harder to apply.

finishes are less durable, easier to strip, easier to apply.

that's why the sealer is always on the bottom and finish on the top.

a good finish also usually adds a nice smooth gloss and luster that the sealer does not provide.

they complement each other and should always both be used, even if not technically required.