Cleaning and sealing your pavers ensures that your hardscaping will look great for years to come. It also protects the surface from oil spills, food spills, various liquids, and tree and animal droppings. Sealing your surface makes it much easier to clean and will help prevent staining.
Sealing pavers locks in efflorescence (that white substance that rises out of a paver), which prevents an old, white- washed look, and also prevents the sand underneath from moving to the surface and migrating to your pool or yard. Another benefit of sealing is that it also locks the pavers into place, and helps to prevent new surfaces from quickly fading.
Polymeric Sand vs. Regular Sand for Pavers
Polymeric Sand is a blend of sand and special additives designed to fill the joints between concrete pavers and brick pavers. When proper preparation is taken (such as weed killer, insect repellant/removal), this polymeric jointing sand has the potential to reduce weed growth, resist rain washout and help prevent insect penetration, compared to more traditional sand.
While applying a water-based sealer like Sakrete Natural Look or Sakrete Wet Look sealers isn’t necessary to complete the polymeric sand application, it does do a great job in making the old pavers look new. Since you have already invested a large amount of time in this project, I suggest you do it right and apply the sealer. The sealer is easy to apply and not very expensive. It will be necessary to wait until the paver set hardens, usually in a few days, before applying the sealer.