les phone 7 12 stone repairs 019

The picture above is a good representation of the effect of an enhancing sealer on slate.  Obviously, this sealer–in this case Miracle 511 Seal and Enhance–is in the process of being freshly applied, so the sheen you see will fade as the sealer dries.  Enhancing sealers are penetrating sealers and are designed to soak into porous stone.  Though it’s sedimentary, this stone has metamorphised (sorry for the big words) or changed into slate from shale. This geologic change makes it less porous, so it’s not quite the sponge that some stones are.  What does this mean to you, the homeowner?  It means that the colors will fade back to their natural state over time.  You can re-apply enhancing sealers occasionally to revive the colors, but you should clean and dry the floor well first.  Some people like things shiny, and if that’s the case, a topical sealer (a coating that dries on the top of the stone) is the choice you might make.  Remember that topical sealers–like the ones you see applied to Mexican pavers and some stamped concrete driveways–tend to fail, dry out, crack and peel over time.  To revive these coated surfaces, stripping is required, and your expense goes up.  So think long and hard before putting that topical sealer over your beautiful stone.  Enhancing sealers bring out the deeper colors of stone, but like most thing in life, require maintenance.