If you’re looking for the top grout sealers for the shower on the market, here’s the guide you need. In this buying guide, I’ll share with you essential tips on what criteria you need when choosing grout sealers and recommend products that fit every budget.
What is Grout Sealer?
A grout sealer creates a barrier against moisture and staining, which prevents stains and the formation of mold and mildew. It helps to keep your grout looking new and makes for easier cleaning in your shower. You should always ensure newly grouted tiles are treated with a grout sealer to keep your bathroom in its best condition, but even old grout can be treated with grout sealer after it has been thoroughly cleaned and allowed to dry. Grout sealers typically last for one or two years, and the application should be completed annually to ensure the best performance.
Benefits of Grout Sealer
Protects against stains
Grout sealer creates a barrier over your grout. Grout is essentially a combination of cement, sand, and water, making it a porous material that can stain easily if anything is spilled on it. In the shower, potential stains might include hair dye, colored shampoo or shower gel, or dirt. A grout sealer will prevent any stains from absorbing into the grout, and therefore stop any stains in their tracks.
Protects against discoloration
As well as stains, grout can become discolored and worn looking over time. This can happen gradually as a result of a combination of things, including hard water build-up from mineral deposits or even from using bathroom cleaning products. By sealing your grout, you can prevent this from happening because the sealer creates a layer over your grout to protect it from discoloration. This will also mean that cleaning your shower is a much easier and simpler process.
Prevents mold and mildew
Grout sealer repels moisture and bacteria, which is vital in preventing mold and mildew from forming on your grout. In bathrooms especially, moisture can penetrate into the tiny gaps in grout and create a breeding ground for mold and mildew to form. This is not only aesthetically unappealing, but it can also lead to airborne mold spores that can be breathed in by your family and create health issues. Using grout sealer in your shower will prevent such issues from occurring.
Prolongs the lifespan of the grout
Sealer should be used every one or two years to ensure you get the most out of your grout. By doing this and ensuring a permanent barrier is protecting your grout, you should find that it stays looking new for longer and has a longer lifespan. Non-sealed grout can be penetrated by moisture and may eventually start to crumble away, as a result, leaving unsightly gaps in your grouting. Grout sealer is a preventative method, which will save you from having to replace your grout.
What to Look For in Your Grout Sealer
Consider the type of application you would prefer and select your grout sealer accordingly. Some sealers come in spray bottles that can then be spread with cloths, while others will need to be poured into a pot you can dip a paintbrush in. Some people even apply their sealer with an old toothbrush for accurate coverage and to prevent runoff onto nearby tiles. The most common types of application for grout sealers are:
- Paint Pad
Toxic Vs. Non-Toxic
Some grout sealers are water-based and have low or no odors, while others may contain toxic chemicals and release unpleasant fumes. If you are sensitive to strong smells or want to avoid chemicals in your home, opt for a non-toxic formula.
If you want to seal your tiles at the same time as sealing your grout, choose a grout sealer that is also compatible with your tile surface. Many grout sealers can also be used on granite, marble, slate, and ceramic or porcelain tiles.
Impregnator or Coating
Grout sealers can be divided into two main types; impregnator or coating. Impregnator sealers will absorb into the grout, filling any tiny spaces and creating a barrier that will prevent any moisture from seeping in. Coating sealers work by forming a layer over the top of the tile. Both of these types ultimately perform the same job, but they do it in a different way. Impregnator sealers are considered to be superior and create a more effective and long-lasting barrier.
If you are looking for the best grout sealer for the shower, then consider these options. These reviews cover the best-selling and most popular grout sealers currently available on the market for use in showers.
Miracle Sealants 511 PT SG Impregnator Sealer
This grout sealer penetrates the grout so that the grout absorbs the formula and then keeps all moisture out. It has a clear color and will not yellow with age, therefore creating an invisible seal that is effective against oil and water. The formula will cover a space of up to 500 square feet and is guaranteed for 20 years. As well as working to seal the grout, it also seals ceramic tile, porcelain tile, glazed tile, stucco, travertine, marble, slate, granite, terrazzo. It has a non-slip surface, so it will also be great for sealing tiles underfoot and improving safety. The liquid formula can be applied in your chosen way, with either a brush, pad, or cloth. It offers excellent coverage and will be completely cured within 72 hours.
Users of this grout sealer are overwhelmingly impressed by it, with some users proclaiming it to be the best grout sealer they have ever used. Users were pleased with how easily the product was applied to the grout or tiles and glad to find that any clean up was very minimal. This grout sealer did not dull the shine of any nearby surfaces such as marble and offered good coverage. Some users commented that the formula itself was very potent, and the smell was difficult to workaround. The chemical formula is dangerous to the skin and eyes, so be sure to wear protective gear.
- Easy application
- Lasts well
- Dries quickly
- Value for money
- Strong smell and fumes
Grout & Granite Penetrating Sealer from The Floor Guys
This is a water-based sealer that penetrates the grout and creates a barrier against moisture and staining. It will work on sanded or unsanded grout and can be easily applied with a paintbrush. Application is easy; you just brush the formula onto the grout, wait for five minutes as it absorbs, then mop off any excess. It increases the durability of grout and offers long-lasting protection on both grout and all types of natural stone. This product is made in the USA by a small family run business and claims to have virtually no odor.
Users of this product are thrilled with the effects it has on their grout, making it look like new and protecting it against spills and stains. Many users found this to be the best type of grout sealer they had ever used and recommended it highly. Users noted that there was hardly any smell at all and were surprised at how easy application and clean up was when compared to other grout sealers they had used before. Some users found that their grout needed more than three coats in order to achieve an adequate moisture barrier, so it may not be the best option for very porous surfaces.
- Easy application
- Easy cleanup
- Dries quickly
- No odor
- Made in the USA
- May need several coats
16 oz AQUA-X Grout Sealer, Clear Grout Sealer, Commercial Grade
This grout sealer comes in a handy spray bottle for easy application; you can spray it directly onto your tiles and grout, then ensure good coverage by spreading it with a lint-free cloth. This grout sealer creates a barrier over your tiles so that any stains can be washed right off with ease. It has virtually no odor and low VOCs so that you can have peace of mind that you aren’t being subjected to harsh and dangerous chemicals while applying it. The color of this formula is milky during the application, so you can easily see where you have been, but it dries clear.
Users of this grout sealer are very impressed at how well it does its job. They note that it is easy to apply, dries quickly, and prevents and stains from appearing on the grout. After application, water beads on the surface of the tiles and grout instead of being absorbed. Even after many months, users found that their grout had not faded and still looked like new. Users were also pleased to find that the sealer did not have any toxic smell and was therefore not unpleasant to use like some other grout sealers.
Some users found that the product didn’t dry as quickly as they would have liked, which is a problem if you’re using it on the floor of a shower, as it can feel sticky underfoot for a few days. A few users also found clean up to be trickier than expected and noted that the product was hard to remove from surrounding tiles. Users also recommended using gloves when applying this product to prevent it from coming into contact with the skin because it can cause a burning sensation.
- Easy spray application
- Low odor
- Difficult cleanup
- May remain sticky for a short period
Black Diamond Stoneworks Ultimate Grout Sealer
This is an easy application grout sealer that comes in a bottle with a flip-top lid and small spout. To apply, you run the bottle along your lines of grout while squeezing it out. You will then need to allow the sealer to penetrate your grout for up to three minutes before wiping away excess from the grout and tiles. The sealer is suitable for all types of grout, including colored grout, and will create a long-lasting barrier against moisture, stains, mold, and mildew.
Opinions of this grout sealer among users were mixed. Some were very happy with its performance, noting that it was easy to apply, easy to clean up, and did the job that they expected. While many users found their grout needed several layers before it became water-resistant, they were pleased with the overall result.
Other users were very disappointed to find that it turned their colored grout to white. Even black grout was transformed to white with this grout, which is quite frustrating if you have spent a lot of money on a specific colored grout. Some users were also disappointed to find that the grout sealer didn’t stand the test of time, and after just a few months, their grout was becoming stained or discolored.
- Easy application
- Easy cleanup
- Chalky finish
- Can change grout color
- Not long-lasting
StoneTech Heavy Duty Grout Sealer
This grout sealer is also suitable for sealing natural stone tiles. It can be applied with a paintbrush or lint-free cloth and will typically need two to three coats. You will know when your grout no longer needs coating because the grout sealer will start to bead on the grout instead of absorbing in. This grout sealer aims to protect grout against stains, mold, and mildew.
Users of this grout sealer offer very mixed reviews. Some found it to be easy to apply, and after a few coats felt that it created a good moisture barrier; however, some users found that their grout was not fully sealed even after five or more coats. Some users noticed no difference at all after applying many coats of the sealer and found that their grout was still absorbing moisture just as it always had.
- Easy application
- Fair barrier created
- May not form a moisture barrier
Seal It Green® Xtreme Impregnating Grout Sealer
This is an eco-friendly formulation that will appeal to anyone with an interest in protecting the environment. It is a water-based formula made with plant-based surfactants, which means there are no nasty chemicals or VOCs and no toxic odors and fumes. This sealer is suitable for use on all types of grout and natural stone tiles and works on both indoor and outdoor areas. It is a clear formula that will not change the look of your grout or tiles and is UV transparent. It comes in a spray bottle for easy application and can be spread over tiles and grout with a cloth for even coverage.
Users of this product had predominantly positive things to say about it. The most satisfaction among users came from the fact that this grout sealer had absolutely no odor at all and no VOCs. This made application a much more pleasant experience and gave users peace of mind that they were not subjecting themselves or their family to toxic chemicals. Users also found that the application was very easy, and after waiting for the product to absorb into the grout, they could simply wipe the runoff away from surrounding tiles without any issue.
Some users found that two coats were enough to create a moisture barrier on their grout, while others needed three. The occasional user found that the longevity of this product was disappointing and that while mold and mildew growth on grout certainly slowed down, it did not prevent it from happening entirely. Others noted that several months after application, their grout still looked like new and they were pleased with the performance of the sealer.
Some users felt that the product did not offer good value for money as the container size was small for the price, however other users believed the extra cost was worth it in order to have an eco-friendly, non-toxic product for their homes.
- Easy application
- Easy cleanup
- Plant and water-based
- No odor
- More expensive
In terms of finding the best grout sealer for the shower, the best all-rounder is the Grout & Granite Penetrating Sealer from The Floor Guys. This has no odor, is made in the USA, is easy to apply and clean up, and offers excellent coverage.
If you aren’t bothered by toxic chemicals and fumes, then the Miracle Sealants 511 PT SG Impregnator Sealer also gives a very impressive performance, reliably blocking moisture and stains from your grout for up to two years. For those trying to make the switch to more eco-friendly products, the Seal It Green® Xtreme Impregnating Grout Sealer is easily the best purchase that meets this criterion.