Can Concrete Sealer be Used on Wood

Using concrete sealer on wood is not recommended for several reasons. Concrete sealers are specifically formulated to penetrate and protect concrete surfaces, which have very different properties from wood.

Here’s why concrete sealer is generally not suitable for wood:

1. Different Absorption Rates

  • Concrete is more porous than wood, allowing the concrete sealer to penetrate deeply and form a durable protective layer.
  • Wood, on the other hand, has a different porosity and grain structure, which may not allow the concrete sealer to penetrate or adhere properly, leading to inadequate protection or peeling over time.

2. Moisture Dynamics

  • Concrete sealers are designed to deal with the moisture levels typically found in concrete, not wood. Wood can absorb and release moisture more dramatically than concrete, expanding and contracting with changes in humidity. A concrete sealer might not accommodate this movement, potentially leading to cracking or flaking.

3. Chemical Incompatibility

  • The chemical composition of concrete sealers might not be compatible with wood, possibly leading to damage or discoloration of the wood surface.

4. Aesthetic Considerations

  • Concrete sealers may leave a sheen or finish that is not desirable on wood, especially on surfaces where the natural beauty of the wood grain is preferred.

Alternatives for Sealing Wood

Instead of using a concrete sealer, it’s best to use products specifically designed for wood to ensure compatibility and achieve the desired protection and aesthetics. Here are some alternatives:

  • Wood Sealants: Available in water-based and oil-based varieties, wood sealants are formulated to penetrate wood fibers and provide a protective layer against moisture and UV damage.
  • Varnishes and Polyurethanes: These provide a durable finish that can protect wood from wear, moisture, and sunlight.
  • Oils (e.g., Linseed, Tung Oil): Natural oils penetrate the wood to provide protection and enhance its natural beauty, though they may require more frequent reapplication.
  • Waxes: Provide a natural finish and some water resistance, ideal for furniture and interior surfaces.

Using masonry sealer on wood is generally not recommended due to the differences in material composition and porosity between wood and masonry surfaces like concrete, brick, or stone. Masonry sealers are formulated to penetrate and protect these hard, porous surfaces, which have very different characteristics and moisture management needs compared to wood.

Other Reasons to Avoid Masonry Sealer on Wood:

  • Incompatibility: The chemical composition of masonry sealers may not be suitable for penetrating or bonding with wood fibers, leading to inadequate protection or even damage to the wood.
  • Moisture Dynamics: Wood expands and contracts with changes in humidity and temperature, a behavior that masonry sealers are not designed to accommodate. This could result in the sealer cracking, peeling, or flaking off.
  • Aesthetic Impact: Masonry sealers might alter the appearance of wood in undesirable ways, such as by creating a glossy or unnatural finish that masks the wood’s natural beauty.
  • Breathability Issues: Some masonry sealers might block the wood’s ability to breathe, trapping moisture inside and potentially leading to rot or mold growth.

If You Still Choose to Proceed:

If, for some reason, you decide to use a masonry sealer on wood, or if you’re working on a project where the specific properties of a masonry sealer are desired (e.g., for an experimental purpose or a unique craft project where long-term durability is not a concern), here are general steps you might follow, keeping in mind the risks mentioned:

  1. Prepare the Wood Surface: Ensure the wood is clean, dry, and free from any dirt, oil, or previous finishes. Sand the surface lightly if necessary to remove imperfections.
  2. Test the Sealer: Apply the masonry sealer to a small, inconspicuous area of the wood or a scrap piece of the same wood to test for adhesion, appearance, and any adverse reactions.
  3. Apply the Sealer: If the test area shows acceptable results, apply the masonry sealer according to the manufacturer’s instructions, which typically involves using a brush, roller, or sprayer. Given the differences in absorption rates between wood and masonry, the wood may require a different application rate or number of coats.
  4. Dry and Cure: Allow the sealer to dry and cure fully according to the product’s guidelines. Keep in mind that the actual drying and curing times may vary when applied to wood versus masonry.
  5. Evaluate the Results: Assess the sealed wood for any signs of discoloration, inadequate coverage, or other issues. Monitor the wood over time for any signs of peeling, cracking, or moisture-related damage.

Recommended Approach:

It’s best to select a sealer or protective finish that is specifically designed for use on wood to ensure compatibility and achieve the best results. Products designed for wood will provide the appropriate level of protection, enhance the wood’s natural beauty, and accommodate the wood’s natural movement and moisture dynamics.

When applying masonry sealer on wood, it’s important to note that masonry sealer is thicker than wood sealant. To ensure smooth application, consider using a roller or brush rather than a sprayer to avoid potential clogging issues. If you must use a sprayer, opt for a wider tip to prevent clogs. Additionally, backrolling with a roller can help ensure thorough coverage, reaching all the intricate details of the surface.


While it might be tempting to use a concrete sealer on wood due to its durability and protective qualities, the differences in material properties between concrete and wood make it unsuitable. For the best results and to ensure the longevity of your wood surfaces, choose a sealing product specifically designed for wood.