Q: How much should a warranty influence my
choice of a concrete sealer??
A: It depends. First of all the "rule
of thumb" is that no reputable firm provides a performance
based warranty for the "Do it yourselfer." The reputable
companies will only offer a performance based warranty if it is
applied by their own labor. Why? First of all, usually it is because
the concrete sealer company didn't pour your concrete. There is
no way for them to now guarantee how well a product is going to
stick, soak in, or seal up your concrete without knowing the "bag
mix," water to cement ratio, and finish quality of your concrete.
Furthermore, they will not know how well the sealer was applied
if it was not applied by a professional.
So why are some irreputable companies offering to
write a warranty on performance? Usually it is because they are
selling something that is ineffective, but very cheap to manufacture.
For example, some silicate formula's can be as low as two dollars
a gallon to make if they are mostly water. Some companies on the
web are really guys in their garage mixing a formula that is almost
all water with enough silicate to call it a sealer. Then they sell
it with a long lasting performance warranty for nearly forty bucks
a gallon. It does little to nothing for your concrete but they are
playing the "warranty game." They know that many homeowners
will not call them back, ever. They are banking on the fact that
one third of the population moves every three years. So, they know
that they are very likely never to hear from you again. Honestly,
they've studied the market and they know that most homeowners will
not notice the problems they have, will have sold their home, or
will lose their contact info. Therefore, once they sell to you,
they have a good chance of never hearing from you again.
But what if you DO have a problem and you DO call
Simple, they sold you 2 dollar a gallon "sealer"
for 40 bucks a gallon. Their warranty promises to refund your money
OR REPLACE THE PRODUCT, THEIR CHOICE. Guess which one they are going
to choose? They'll send you more of the cheap, mostly water product
that didn't work the first time. Don't like it? Tough, they have
legally fulfilled their part of the bargain and you are stuck with
something that didn't work the first time.
Let me ask you something, "If your finished
basement now has $8,000.00 worth of damage to the walls and floor
because the sealer failed, do you really want more of the same stuff
that didn't work the first time?" No? Tough, cause that's the
way the warranty game is played. Also, who cares if they guaranteed
40 years of performance if they are out of business next year because
the "guy in the garage" changed company names to stop
all the claims?
So what's the answer? Work with a company that has
proven technology and can provide references for jobs that have
worked out well and have stood the test of time. Work with a company
that tells you the truth about things like "WATER PROOFING"
and the "THREE
STAGES OF MOISTURE MITIGATION."
Our favorite way to "weed out" those playing
the warranty game or the "look big on the web" game is
to ask one simple question:
Can I come and look at your manufacturing facility?
Usually they don't know where you are calling in
from, so just ask where they are making the stuff, then tell them
you want to make a trip their next week and would it be okay to
stop in and tour the joint? Almost without fail, garage guy will
not want you to do this and will do everything he can to tell you
why you can't come by.
Want to see MightySeal? Email us or call to let
us know when you are in town and we'll give you the grand tour of
our expansive ISO certified facility. Look there's nothing wrong
with that guy in the garage mixing chemicals if he's getting it
right and treating you well. But if he's playing the warranty game
and hiding this fact from you, you should run away as fast as you