Skip to Content

Can You Paint Over the Concrete Sealer? (Explained)

Sealing or painting over concrete ensures the concrete’s safety and durability. No stains, no rust, and even no scratches can be confirmed by applying sealer.

There are some paint sealer available which gives benefits of both sealer and paint. Using both paint and sealer individually is indeed a complex method.

We have included some tips regarding paint over the concrete sealer. By following these tips, you can easily start off your work.

Can you paint over a concrete sealer?

Partially, one cannot paint over a concrete sealer. You need to remove the sealer before applying paint. Otherwise, the paint will not be absorbed. You can also wait for a long time to stabilize the moisture point of the concrete. One can use a primer prior to applying paint on old sealed concrete.

A sealer gives a rough and crystal clear surface to concrete. Meanwhile, paint only gives the concrete color. There are some paint sealers available which give both the facility of a sealer and paint.

The paint is not suitable for every sealer. Water-based sealers support using paint. On the other hand, acrylic sealers oppose using paint. Let’s go through a short detail on every sealer.


Bostik sealers are water-based. It prevents any water-based dysfunction or damage to the concrete. It is also water-resistant.

Any water-based paint will not be absorbed if the sealer is Bostik. Instead, create a layer of paint on the sealer and give the concrete a powdery texture.


An acrylic sealer can be water-based. It is quite sensitive to water. If the concrete has moisture remaining or pores on the surface, the acrylic sealer will not sit on the concrete.

It takes 2-3 days to completely dry and to walk on. Paint cannot be applied to it as it gives an ultra-layer over the concrete.

Sargent Art (SARAD) 16oz Acrylic Paint Assortment, 12 Colors, Bottles, Count


Solvent-based sealers are best for giving a strong surface to the concrete. It also keeps the color of the concrete and removes residues too.

Even though it is solvent, it doesn’t allow the paint to penetrate. In the end, paint over solvent-based sealer is not a good option.

DayGlo Fluorescent Solvent-Based 215 Series Brushing Enamel Paint (Gallon, Signal Green, 215-18)


Penetrating sealer puts a chemical layer over the concrete surface. The chemicals enter the concrete and even the pores and give it a crystal-like finish.

The chemical layers resist paint, to enter and put its layer on the concrete.

How to paint over concrete sealer?

Sealers do not support paint as they resist the elements from getting into the concrete. You need to remove the concrete sealer first to put paint over it.

Following the below steps will give you an overall idea of how to put paint over concrete sealer.

Remove the sealer:

Removing the sealer is essential here. If you have recently put a coat of sealer on, you may need to wait for at least 1 month. For old sealers, you may sand the concrete.

Thus, the sealer would be removed from the surface of the concrete.

Wash the concrete:

To remove extra dust residue and chemicals from the concrete, wash it. Washing may be done with chemicals, alkaline or acid wash. Choose according to the need. Dry the concrete.

Apply paint:

After drying the concrete, check the moisture. If the water is completely dried, paint the concrete by spraying or rolling a roller. Let it dry for a day at least. Finally, you will get painted concrete.

How do you prepare sealed concrete for painting?

Painting can be done on sealed concrete. Only if the sealer is water-based or removed fully. Otherwise, the concrete will resist the paint.

Following the steps below, you can prepare sealed concrete for painting.

Moisture context:

Sealed concrete is not suitable for painting. Sealer resists water absorption of the concrete. When you apply the paint, the sealer will resist the paint and the paint will not penetrate. That’s why it is necessary to go through a moisture test.

When you put water on the surface, if the water remains like drops, the concrete is not suitable yet for painting. You need to remove the sealer to some extent.

Remove the sealer:

Well, removing the sealer to a proper amount is necessary here. You can try using sandpaper. To remove the sealer part. You can also use a scraper to remove excess dirt from the top.


Cleaning is always a priority before painting. Remove the residue sealer from the surface and other components too. You can try acid wash if there is rust.

Or alkaline cleaning is also a good option here. As acid wash sometimes damages the concrete, be careful while washing.

By making bubbles and making cracks. Spray the chemicals all over, rub by using a roller or anything foamed and wash off with water. Do not use metals to rub the surface as it may create rust.

Let it dry for 5-6 days. Check the moisture and the concrete will be ready for paint. 

Do I need to seal concrete before painting?

One necessarily doesn’t need to seal concrete before painting. We would rather suggest using a primer and no sealer. Maybe you can finish the whole process by sealing.

Sealing gives resistance to the concrete. Resistance to moisture, especially. A coating of sealer would create a smooth texture over the concrete. That shiny appearance makes the concrete tough and clear like glass.

Sealing also prevents rust on the concrete. As sealer creates a layer over the concrete, sometimes it is tough for the paint to get absorbed.

If the sealer is water-based, the paint can get absorbed sometimes. Still, to prevent further damage, one should not use a sealer before painting.

Give a coat of primer in between the sealer and paint. Or seal the concrete after painting. In all aspects, make sure the floor is clean, scratch-free, and stain-free.

How soon can you paint after sealing concrete?

One can paint approximately 30 days after sealing concrete. The more the day passes, the better surface for painting one will get. It is actually because of the moisture content of the concrete.

The sealer prevents the concrete from absorbing water and other components. If you apply paint over the sealer immediately, the concrete will be unable to absorb the paint. As a result, the paint will float over the surface.

Wait for 30 days at least and check the moisture of the concrete if it is suitable for painting.

Do I need to acid wash sealed concrete before painting?

You may not need to acid wash sealed concrete before painting.  Acid wash is an effective way of cleaning. It easily removes dust and rust.

It is especially recommended for removing rust. Concrete floors with rust should be washed with an acid wash.

But if the concrete floor is sealed, the acid wash will not do any good. The acid wash cannot penetrate the concrete as it is already sealed.

Even if you do an acid wash, the concrete floor will not be cleaned. You need to first wash the concrete floor and then seal it.

Acid washing would also remove stains from the new concrete floor. At the same time, if the acid wash is not done properly, it can damage the concrete. Cracks may occur in the concrete.  And also need to wait for a long time before applying paint.

What kind of primer should I use on sealed concrete?

Well, using primer on sealed concrete is not appreciated. You may remove the sealing beforehand. After that, you can apply primer to the concrete.

Primer mainly fills up pores and evens the tone of the concrete. Making it suitable for painting. Epoxy primers may do some good here. Still, the chemical components of epoxy are harmful to humans. Do not use it inside a house.

Can I put concrete sealer over paint?

Of course, a concrete sealer can be put over paint. It is a wise idea to put concrete sealer over paint. Concrete sealer gives a tough texture outside. In addition to that, it also protects against damage caused by water or chemicals.

You need to apply the paint first so that next you can put the concrete sealer. The sealer would seal the paint and ensure the material doesn’t leave any stains.

Other than that, it will also ensure the durability of the paint and leave no scratches. Over time, the paint would remain the same as first applied. Remember to dry off the paint first.

Final Thoughts

Overall, painting over sealed concrete is not suitable, as the paint will remain on the surface. One can try using a paint sealer to give color to the concrete. Or wait until the sealer strips away from the top. You can use sealer paint instead of using extra paint to color.