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Old 05-22-2013, 11:25 AM   #1
SnowSki
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Need advice on exterior travertine and concrete sealing around pool

OK, so I've just joined today in search of information on my unfinished yard project. We extensively remodeled our pool over the last year, and I'm now finding short comings in the contractor that I hired, who also hasn't finished a number of problems and has disappeared. I'm strictly looking for advice on how to solve the problems that I've been left with. Our pool has 2" thick travertine coping. The hardscape decking is a combination of travertine and stamped concrete. Here what needs fixing, followed by additional information.

1. Travertine is slick, especially when wet (yeah, it's around a pool, so I really need to fix this issue).
  • a) I have read that one can cast silica sand on the first coat of sealant, and then follow with an additional coat of sealer thereafter. Is this a viable solution? If not, what would be better?

  • b) What kind of sealer do you use, impregnator or enhancer? or something else? I'd be happy for everything to have a wet look to show off the depth of colors, and welcome specific suggestions on products.

  • c) Where do you buy silica sand, what grit would be recommended, and is there a type/color/size that won't show on top of my beautiful travertine?

  • d) If there are long-term maintenance issues on one approach over another, that would be helpful information.

  • e) What kind of prepping would be involved before sealing travertine, in particular cleaning? I haven't grouted yet, which I plan to do first, and I don't want to fill the natural look of our traverine, just the cut lines.

  • f) Someone told me that natural stone used in exterior applications are better off not sealed. Is there any truth to that?

  • g) Is there any reason I would need to use more than one type of sealer on the travertine to achieve the wet look AND reduce slippery when wet issue?

2. Beautiful richly colored concrete was released with an ashy-colored release, now looks terribly dull and needs to be sealed to enhance the overall appearance. If anyone can reflect on this, too, that would be a big help. It would be ideal to be able to seal both concrete and stone with one type of sealant.

3. Need advice on multi-purpose wet tile saw to cut tile and natural stone for various exterior and interior projects, including: additional 1" thick travertine for exterior details (finish some unfinished work), interior travertine tile work, glass and ceramic tile, and crackled glass tile. I definitely don't want to buy something cheap, would like the tool to last for long-term use. Blade recommendations welcome too. I really like all the Dewalt products I own.


Thank you!
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Old 05-22-2013, 12:16 PM   #2
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Let's start with sealing first since that would be the easiest one to answer.

You should absolutely seal the stone. Your best bet for an outdoor application, especially around a pool, would be a solvent based exterior sealer. If you're looking to darken the color with an enhancer, my recommendations are either the StoneTech Enhancer Pro (make sure it's the pro version) or Miracle Sealants 511 Seal And Enhance. Both great products.

As for the surface being slippery, the sealers recommended above are impregnating sealers meaning they get absorbed by the stone and will not change the texture of the surface. That being said, mixing sand won't work because it's not a topical coating.
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Old 09-10-2018, 02:25 AM   #3
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SnowSki, any results or recommendations you could report back with??

Im currently working on a very similar project
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Old 09-10-2018, 07:50 AM   #4
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Epp, please note that SnowSki made only one post more than five years ago and never returned. You might try a PM, but don't count on a response, eh?
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Old 10-08-2018, 08:30 PM   #5
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1. You definitely need to seal, or the travetine is not going to look great in the long run. The point of sealing is to keep water, dirt, and contaminants out of the stone. By doing this, you will inherently have more water on the surface since it can't penetrate, which will contribute to how slippery it is, but it will prevent mold, mildew, and plant growth from occurring.

Either an impregnator or an enhancer will do essentially the same job. It really just depends on what type of finished look you want, as an impregnator will generally not alter the appearance of the stone, while an enhancer will.

Maintenance will be the same regardless of the type of sealer that you use. They will both need to be recoated occasionally depending on the exposure to the elements. Generally, it will require a lot less sealer on subsequent coats.

2. I would use a color enhancing or glossy acrylic sealer for this. Something that will bring out the colors.
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Old 10-12-2018, 08:13 AM   #6
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the following are my reccomendations to your questions:

I have read that one can cast silica sand on the first coat of sealant, and then follow with an additional coat of sealer thereafter. Is this a viable solution? If not, what would be better?

b) What kind of sealer do you use, impregnator or enhancer? or something else? I'd be happy for everything to have a wet look to show off the depth of colors, and welcome specific suggestions on products.

c) Where do you buy silica sand, what grit would be recommended, and is there a type/color/size that won't show on top of my beautiful travertine?

I would not use silica sand..It will be a constant maintenance issue and will distract from the look. There are slip products out there that will work by microetching the surface. Do a google search for slip resistant products. Stay away from coatings.

d) If there are long-term maintenance issues on one approach over another, that would be helpful information.

Yes, do not use a coating. maintenace will be a nightmare

e) What kind of prepping would be involved before sealing travertine, in particular, cleaning? I haven't grouted yet, which I plan to do first, and I don't want to fill the natural look of our travertine, just the cut lines.

clean only, allow to dry before applying any sealer

f) Someone told me that natural stone used in exterior applications are better off not sealed. Is there any truth to that?

Yes, I am big fan of NOT sealing exterior stone, this is especially true of travertine. DO NOT Seal

g) Is there any reason I would need to use more than one type of sealer on the travertine to achieve the wet look AND reduce slippery when wet issue?

High polish equals slippery surface...DONT DO IT
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