Navigation Menu+
Commercial Flooring News


Lisa Breakspear on sealants

CAN you remember the front garden? You don’t see many these days. Over the years, these green spaces have been forsaken in favour of more parking.
Not surprising when you consider that the average UK household now has two cars and many (around 2.2m) have four or more on the same driveway. The practical advantages are obvious, but ill-kempt hard standings do little for a home’s curb appeal.
Unlike grass, hard surfaces don’t readily soak up rain, so they tend to become damp and slippery. This in turn can create potential for flooding. There is an upside to all of this though. A driveway that’s been neglected provides a professional deep clean opportunity!
Many householders may reach for the pressure washer, but whilst a blast of water will remove surface dirt, it will not clean into the porosity. There are, however, some great products available that will!
Deep clean products are either acidic or alkaline based and the substrate will determine which one to use. Certain formulas are also more suitable for specific problems, for example, an alkaline product is best for removing tyre marks and organic dirt.
Depending on the surface, cementitious soiling can be treated with an acid or a mild alkaline, and oil marks can be removed using a poultice product.
Many UK driveways will have deteriorated due to flooding over the winter months but even this can be repaired, using a consolidating product. These types of formulas will form a bond within the substrate, which will prevent water seepage and crumbling.
Once a driveway has been thoroughly cleaned and repaired, an impregnator or topical sealant should then be applied. This will make maintenance easier going forwards. In the past, application has proved difficult, as solvent-based products can’t be applied in damp conditions, but now there are some fabulous water-based alternatives available. These can be applied with residual moisture, so renovations aren’t so weather-dependent.
The new breed of effective deep cleaners and water-based sealants make driveway maintenance a viable business opportunity, all year round. And, summer is a great time to explore this income generator. Home owners are more likely to be away, leaving driveways free to clean, and a job done in the warmer weather is always more pleasurable!
T: 01584 877286
Lisa Breakspear is sales & technical director, Fila UK

This article has been reproduced from the Contract Flooring Journal website. You can find them at