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Aqua Mix Penetrating Grout Sealer Review
Aqua Mix Penetrating Sealer offers everything that professional tile and grout sealers provide without the professional price tag.
Is it really as good as a professional sealant or is it a cut cost product that should best be left on the shelf?
This grout sealant review aims to test the sealer’s versatility in protecting grout against common household stains like wine, oil and coffee. This review will only feature stains on grout but the porosity can be applied to natural stone tile as well.
Let’s dive in and start creating some stains!
Aqua Mix Penetrating Grout & Tile Sealer Overview
At a glance, this sealant boasts an impressive amount of features for a entry-level product.
It has all the things you want to hear like no VOC’s (great for the environment), it’s water-based (easy to use with low odors) and can do more things than a swiss army knife. (Well, not really, but for a tiling product, it’s impressive.) It also allows moisture vapor transmission (won’t seal in moisture that can lead to smells), essential for wet-areas like showers.
This sealer can:
- Seal Natural Stone Tile
- Seal All Forms Of Grout (Apart from Epoxy That Doesn’t Need It)
- Act As A Pre-Grouting Sealer/Grout Release
- Easy To Use And Apply
- Wide Range Of Uses
- Water-Based With Low VOCs.
- Can Be Used Indoors/Outdoors
- Stain Resistant
- The list of cons reads like a bunch of reasons why you should buy Sealer’s Choice Gold instead. I didn’t intend it to be this way, but I need to point it out.
- Dosen’t Last As Long (5 years vs 15 of Sealer’s Choice Gold)
- Needs More Coats For Maximum Stain Protection
- Fairly High On PH Scale 11. (Sealer’s Choice Gold Is 8. Making It More Neutral And Safer)
- Not Suitable For Commercial Food Preperation Areas (Sealer’s Choice Gold Is Reccommneded.)
- 2 Coats Wasn’t Enough To Prevent Against Wine, Oil Or Motor Oil
How Long Does Aqua Mix Penetrating Sealant Last?
The manufacturer states it can last on the surface for up to 5 years which sounds like a lot but when you compare it to their professional sealant Sealer’s Choice Gold at 15 years, it’s not that good. Bear in mind that all these estimates are in perfect conditions with minimal surface wear. Kinda like the expected MPG you get from a car, you’ll never hit the figures that they so proudly display in the brochure.
It all depends on use-case, texture of surface, traffic level and amount of moisture in the area.
In my (and other tile setter’s) experience, we recommend to reapply a sealant every 6-12 months.
What does this mean for today’s product on review?
To me, the shorter expectancy means there are less “solids” in the formula that allows for a cheaper price tag in comparison to the professional grade Sealer’s Choice Gold. Solids are the actual agents that seal the grout as the carrier agent (water) evaporates away.
That means you’ll need to apply more coats and reapply it more often. Every 6 months for proper water beading on grout and adequate stain protection on tile would be my estimate.
So now we understand what Penetrating Sealer is about, let’s take a look at my test results!
I tried to make this test as “real world as possible.” This means I tried to simulate how a grout sealer would be applied in real life and the stains that would be subjected to it.
This test is similar to the one done by NATCO a few years a go but whilst they did a very scientific test, I felt it didn’t emulate real world use.
My test was applied to light grey grout that was hardened for 72 hours before hand. I did applied the penetrating grout sealer with a sponge in accordance to manufacturers specifications.
I waited 24 hours and then did a water droplet test to see whether water is beading on the grout. If it fails to bead properly, I will apply a further coat of sealant.
The stains were applied and left on the grout for 1 minute. This was to simulate the amount of time someone would make the stain, get concerned and run to the kitchen, grab a wet cloth and wipe the stain off the grout.
*Please note* Color of grout may vary between photos due to variations in light conditions. I took these photos outside not in an controlled environment.
Penetrating Grout Sealer Test Results
Okay, enough talking, let’s look at how the grout held up to common stains!
2 coats of grout sealer were applied.
Take a look at the photo and then I’ll explain how they look in reality.
The Aqua-Mix Penetrating Grout Sealer held up very well against mud and coffee. They wiped clean off.
Cooking Oil left a wet patch that dried up to be nearly invisible.
Red wine left a light pink stains on the grout. It’s not overly noticable but it did remain.
Used motor oil, without a surprise, still remained. It discolored the grout thoroughly and would not come off.
Penetrating Grout Sealer Conclusion
Overall, Aqua Mix Penetrating Grout Sealer performed how I expected it to.
Since it was a low-cost sealant, it required 2 coats to provide adequate water beading. After seeing the results, I’d recommend 3 coats minimum in heavy use areas. If used as a shower sealer, 2 coats should be fine.
I was disappointed that even 2 coats didn’t protect against red wine. This is arguably the most common stain that would be subjected to grout or stone tile like marble. If you are thinking of using this sealant on natural stone, I’d recommend one of the tile sealants featured in my best tile sealant review.
This sealant would be excellent when used on darker grouts like a mid grey or anthracite. Lighter color grouts would benefit from a professional grade grout sealer like Aqua Mix Sealer’s Choice Gold or Aqua-X Grout Sealer.
Also, remember that this sealant requires at least 2 coats and will need to be reapplied every 6 months. If you prefer less maintenance and more coverage, those sealers would be a better choice.
I hope this this grout sealer review was helpful to you and you enjoyed the test results! It was exciting to see how the sealants would hold up against common stains and sharing those results to consumers like you.
If you would like to read more grout sealer reviews, please check out my best grout sealer review that covers a range of products.