Should I seal my paving?
Mark Hunter-Smith of Algoa Brick advises:
"Any form of sealant or dressing on a brick automatically turns a maintenance free product into one that has to be maintained as the sealer will weather and or peel off over time. The only time this has limited success is internal feature walls that are protected from the elements. Sealing traps moisture in the bricks and wall and cause softening and failure of the mortar. In most older buildings you will be able to see that the bricks to not fail, it is the mortar that crumbles or splits.
"Applying a sealer to an external paving situation is probably the hardest to do as it is totally exposed to weather as well as car tyre abrasion etc. It has no roof overhang to protect or vertical walls for rain to run down i.e horizontal surface taking full pounding. I do not think a sealer will last very long in this application especially in the high wear areas which can create a patchy type finish. Also a sealer makes the paver waterproof so rain water pooling occurs and also surface can become rather slippery.
"I would suggest rather a good clean with a high pressure setting of a garden hose using industrial type soap like Teepol. If dirt very stubborn a weak acid cleaner can be used."