Best Wood Sealer 2020 – Top 9 Wood Sealers Reviewed

Wood has always been an integral part of our building materials here in the west. It both looks and feels nice.

However, being an organic material, it’s prone to problems like lack of water resistance, formation of knots and holes on the surface, irregular grain and edge failures.

Luckily, the majority of these problems can be fixed with a very simple and convenient solution – a wood sealer.

In this article, we’ll help you find the best wood sealer for you and your situation. There are no “one size fit all” when it comes to wood sealers. Thus, we have reviewed them one-by-one and categorized them so that you easily can find the one that suits your needs the best.

Best Wood Sealer

In a hurry? Here are the best wood sealers on the market today.
Best Overall: Ready Seal 512
“high quality, drip- and run-free stain which results in an even and smooth finish of the wooden surface”

Very Popular: Anchorseal 2 Hybrid
“It’s one of the few premium products we suggest for indoor applications as well as for commercial applications”

Best Budget Choice: Rain Guard Water Sealer SP-8002
“handy sealer to protect your indoor surfaces from moisture and dirt”

Long-Lasting: Thompson’s WaterSeal TH.A21711-16
“long-lasting, waterproof and non-hazardous”

Eco-Friendly: Defy Crystal Clear Composite Deck Waterproofing Sealer
“one of the most advanced waterproofing sealers”

Good Waterproof: Thompson’s WaterSeal 21802 VOC Wood Protector
“This sealer can be applied over stained or painted wooden surfaces”

Good Price: Waterlox TB 3809 25F
“includes 90 percent of the resin portion formed from natural and renewable resources”

Easy to Use: Acri-Soy Penetrating Concrete and Wood Sealer
“Considered as one of the best product for porous surfaces as it penetrates like an oil and dries up like a water-based sealer”

Improves the Look: DeckWise Ipe Seal Hardwood End Grain Sealant
“Gives an ambient shine and a solid color appearance”

Best Overall: Ready Seal 512

Reasons to buy:

  • Does not require a primer
  • Easily applied using a common airless sprayer, roller or a brush
  • Can be applied at any temperature
  • Requires no constant back brushing or rolling as it appears not to leave any laps or drips
  • Requires no thinning or diluting prior to the application
  • Life expectancy approximately 2 to 5 years
Reasons not to buy:

  • Lightweight of the liquid makes it difficult to apply on vertical surfaces
  • Requires a large amount when applied on an older wooden surface
  • Difficulty of reapplication

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Our first pick is a professional-grade wood sealer used for refinishing purposes of a wooden surface. It is a product which was not meant to be used by the homeowners. However, its ease of use makes it a handy product for both commercial and home-based users.

The reason we endorse Ready Seal 512 is that it’s a high quality, drip- and run-free stain which results in an even and smooth finish of the wooden surface.

The Seal 512 formula is a unique blend of pigments, paraffin oil, resins and algaecides. It is also available in a wide range of colors which adds to the vast applications of the product. Ready Seal 512 is found to be the darkest in color when applied, however, it reaches its permanent solid color after approximately two weeks.

We consider this product as one of the easiest to use since the product does not require a very expensive or modern sprayer as a common and cheap airless sprayer can do the job. The consistency of the spray liquid is a little thicker than the consistency of water. It is advised to be used with a small tip nozzle along with a brush wherever necessary.

Very Popular: Anchorseal 2 Hybrid Log and Lumber End Grain Sealer

Reasons to buy:

  • Prevents almost 90% of drying splits and end checking
  • Water-based and eco-friendly
  • Can help reduce blue stains in log ends
  • Conserves and improves yield
  • Easy to apply as it requires only a brush or a spray
  • Can tolerate freezing
  • Thin consistency makes it easier to work with
Reasons not to buy:

  • High cost
  • Mostly serves the commercial users and applications
  • Requires at least two to three coats

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Anchorseal is a wood sealer manufacturer that uses a formula which incorporates petroleum ingredients, wax emulsion and plant-based or natural polymers to create a hybrid end sealer.

It’s one of the few premium products we suggest for indoor applications as well as for commercial applications like sealing the ends of freshly cut logs to protect from damage during the air-drying process.

Anchorseal 2 Hybrid Log and Lumber End Grain Sealer is used for sealing the ends of logs and lumbers which are freshly cut, making it a dominant product in commercial market.

It protects them from drying splits and damaged and rough ends. The organic and inorganic components present in this sealer give an effective finish to the log and lumber ends.

It can also be used with soft logs and lumbers along with the hard ones. It is made from organic ingredients and less petroleum based raw materials which results in its high performance. We believe that these features of the sealer make it a preferred choice for customers.

Best Budget Choice: Rain Guard Water Sealer SP-8002

Reasons to buy:

  • Does not affect the surface appearance and helps prevent efflorescence
  • Eco-friendly
  • Easy to apply
  • Can be applied using an airless sprayer, brush or a roller
  • Safe for pets and plants
  • Prevents surface damage from rain, snow, strong winds and other weather hazards
  • Life expectancy of up to 5 years
Reasons not to buy:

  • Prior mixing with water may be required
  • Several coats may be required which result in high material consumption

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If you prioritize quality over cost and quantity, then we recommend Rain Guard Water sealers for you. Apart from providing water resistance, they also add an anti-graffiti feature to the wooden surfaces. Rain Guard sealers are industry level products for many materials including the wooden furniture.

SP-8002 is a handy sealer to protect your indoor surfaces from moisture and dirt. It is also a reliable product to shield the outdoor surfaces from rain, harsh weather, snow and unwanted graffiti.

The incorporation of an advanced chemical formula and a set of ingredients makes it a dominant wood sealer. A water-based silane and siloxane formula provides superior protection to the surface.

This unique blend of chemicals does not leave a film or layer on the surface affecting its appearance and also prevents the surface from being slippery and unnecessarily shiny. This is a show-off product for your wooden surface.

A property ingredient called Micro-Lok is an additive that ensures deep penetration of the product into the surface and makes it our valued sealer. It creates a long-lasting hydrophobic layer which is not damaged by harsh weather conditions and protects the surface from any unwanted damage. Rain Guard sealers provide an extended life to your home furniture and surfaces.

Long Lasting: Thompson’s WaterSeal TH.A21711-16

Reasons to buy:

  • Long-lasting
  • Can be used on decks, fences, exterior wooden furniture etc.
  • Maximum strength in one coat
  • Advanced protection
  • Non-hazardous
  • Wide range of colors available to compliment almost every kind of wood
Reasons not to buy:

  • May leave splotchy stains on the surface
  • Can cause surface to be slippery and difficult to walk on
  • Can leave a yellowish effect to the wooden surface if applied incorrectly

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Thompson’s is one of the highest-rated wood sealer, stain and polish manufacturers. Their products are used worldwide for strong protection and resistance to mildew and UV damage. Thompson’s products are famous for their durability and easy-to-use attributes. If you are looking to protect an outdoor space you love, we suggest using Thompson’s WaterSeal.

The ability of Thompson’s WaterSeal TH.A21711-16 to last up to 10 years is one reason we consider it as the best water-based wood sealer, given that you have the skills to apply it correctly.

It comes in a wide variety of colors so you can get the perfect color for your deck. It not only protects your deck from damages but also gives it a shiny appearance and adds a rich, beautiful color without damaging the true grain design of the wood.

This product meets our requirements of being long-lasting, waterproof and non-hazardous.

The main ingredients used in the making of Thompson’s WaterSeal include denatured alcohol and paraffin wax – the alcohol helps the wax to stay firm and the wax only wears away once the alcohol has dissipated off. Hence, it results in a versatile combination and gives a long-lasting effect to the product. In some cases, the product can also be used with a stain, which gives an everlasting and impactful finish to the wooden surface.

Eco-Friendly: Defy Crystal Clear Composite Deck Waterproofing Sealer

Reasons to buy:

  • Water-based clear composite deck sealer
  • High durability
  • Includes high quality resins which give better color to the wooden surface and prevents fade
  • Zinc nano-particle technology
  • Easy to apply and maintain
  • Excellent water protection
  • Eco-friendly product
Reasons not to buy:

  • High price
  • Usually two coats are required for a reasonable finish which may consume a lot of material hence increasing the cost of the work
  • Does not prevent the formation of gray patches on the wooden surface which is constantly exposed to sunlight

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Defy Crystal Clear Waterproofing Sealer is our recommendation if you want a sealer that protects your wooden furniture from water, fungi and UV radiation on composite wooden surfaces. It also prevents the return of black stains on composite decks.

The reason we have included Defy in this list is the fact that Defy products incorporate one the most advanced chemical combinations and technology.

Defy Crystal Clear Composite Deck Waterproofing Sealer incorporates zinc nano particles that do not absorb the damaging ultraviolet rays from the sun. These nano particles are distributed at a rate of over thirty trillion per square inch of surface area, having an effect similar to the effect of a sunblock and sun-screen lotions on skin.

Defy Wood Sealer is one of the most advanced waterproofing sealers. The product incorporates nano zinc particles and high-quality resins. It is water-based which helps the wooden furniture to maintain its original color and grain design.

The zinc oxide particles also help in preventing the discoloration, graying and fading of the surface, as these particles have the property to reflect the ultraviolet rays. It also checks our ‘easy-to-use’ chart as it only requires a simple airless sprayer or brush to apply. It can only be applied under normal temperatures up to 45-degree Fahrenheit and demands a simple soap and water cleanup procedure.

Good Waterproof: Thompson’s WaterSeal 21802 VOC Wood Protector

Reasons to buy:

  • Water-based product.
  • Long lasting product and enhances the wood surface’s life.
  • Waterproofs the surface.
  • Does not hide the original grain design of the wooden surface.
  • Coating also resists UV damage and mildew.
Reasons not to buy:

  • Thick consistency of the product makes it difficult to be used with an airless sprayer
  • Requires multiple coats and maintenance

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Being a leading manufacturer of wood sealers, Thompson’s is dedicated to assist you in protecting the wooden decks at your homes. Another reliable suggested product from Thompson’s is a water-based wood seal product which provides three-way protection for wooden furniture.

WaterSeal 21802 VOC Wood Protector is effective for outdoor surfaces since it provides repulsion to water which enhances wood furniture’s life and prevents it from wrap, crack and shrinkage.

This sealer can be applied over stained or painted wooden surfaces. It allows repaint with oil-based products. However, we believe that the ease-of-use of this product is slightly questionable as the product is dense and highly viscous.

Good Price: Waterlox TB 3809 25F

Reasons to buy:

  • Easy to apply
  • Oil-based, enhanced life span of the product
  • Penetrates well into the surface cracks and holes
  • Waterproofs the wooden surface
  • Coverage area is approximately 125 square feet per quarter
  • One of the highest rated products for outdoor applications
  • No thinning required
Reasons not to buy:

  • Requires multiple coats in most cases
  • Drying time may be long depending on the weather and ventilation conditions

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Waterlox products are recommended if you have a marine wood whose integrity and outdoor appearance you want to protect. It is a widely used product which helps in forming a protective and elastic finish against ultraviolet rays, moisture exposure, natural hazards and harsh weather.

It also helps in achieving a warm and amber finish on the wooden surface. Waterlox products are available in wide ranges for indoor and outdoor applications. However, we don’t endorse Waterlox Marine Sealer for indoor applications with direct sunlight.

Waterlox products are hand-made from resin-modified Tung Oil. Our chosen product has the ability to penetrate deep into the wood and form a hard-elastic film of protection wooden surface. This allows resistance against any kind of moisture or hazardous exposure while maintaining the amber look of the wooden job.

This Tung Oil formula includes 90 percent of the resin portion formed from natural and renewable resources. The product does not contain ingredients which are harmful or toxic.

However, we have to make sure you acknowledge this the product can only be applied on exterior surfaces in direct sunlight/UV, such as boat decks, outdoor garage doors, fences etc. and we don’t approve this product to be used on pressure-treated woods.

Easy to Use: Acri-Soy Penetrating Concrete and Wood Sealer

Reasons to buy:

  • Long-lasting surface finish
  • Odorless and eco-friendly
  • Multiple uses
  • Considered as one of the best product for porous surfaces as it penetrates like an oil and dries up like a water-based sealer
  • Non-toxic
  • Easy to apply
Reasons not to buy:

  • Requires surface preparation i.e. the surface must be clean, free of bond breakers and pores for proper penetration
  • Large amount of product is required especially when applying to concrete surfaces

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Our recommendation for a multipurpose sealer for wooden and concrete surfaces comes from Ecoprocote. Acri-Soy Concrete and Wood Sealer is made with a unique chemical blend. It incorporates renewable resource ingredients – the ingredients used are non-toxic, odorless, and organic by-products.

The special ingredients assist the product to achieve petroleum like function with water-based chemistry. They do not let the product to flake or peel, and helps the wooden surface to repel moisture, UV damage and stains integral bonding. This odorless product also maintains the true amber of a wooden surface and prolongs its life.

We recommend this sealer if you want a multi-purpose product for concrete and wooden surfaces in your home. It is especially great for porous surfaces as it is formulated with plant 100% acrylic hybrid soy oil emulsions but dries up like a water-based sealer.

A unique and advanced chemical blend gives this product an upper hand over its competitors.

Improves the Look: DeckWise Ipe Seal Hardwood End Grain Sealant

Reasons to buy:

  • Easy to apply
  • Protects the structural integrity of hardwood decking
  • One quarter of end sealer can cover almost 500 square feet wooden area
  • Gives an ambient shine and a solid color appearance
  • Thick consistency of the sealant makes it easy to apply on wooden edges and fresh cut ends
Reasons not to buy:

  • Can cause color or shading changes in wood, depending upon the quality, age and dryness of the wood
  • Needs multiple coats and drying rate is high

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DeckWise Premium Hardwood Sealer is our pick for a low VOC, non-toxic and environment friendly sealant designed to protect the ends of freshly cut wooden boards or turning planks.

The advanced chemical combination protects the end grains of the boards. DeckWise has been a leading producer of hardwood protectors and has a wide range of products incorporating eco-friendly organic ingredients.

The wax emulsion formula of Ipe Seal prevents the dying splits and end checking in freshly cut logs and wooden decks. We endorse this as its unique formula assists the product to penetrate the deep grains and cracks on the surfaces and allows them to age without decay.

Its nanotechnology qualifies our standard of advanced product and enhances the surface’s life and creates a long-lasting barrier against caustic conditions and harsh weather

How to find the best wood sealer for you

We hope that our endorsed products and their reviews help you narrow down your choice. We have also created a buyer’s guide to assist you further.

What is a wood sealer?

A sealer which is also known as ‘wash coat’ and is often used over unstained or stained wood. The basic purpose of a wood sealer is to seal or fill the pores which are present on the surface of the wood to give a cleaner and smoother look.

It can be used on certain areas of the wood furniture which are prone to roughness and failures such as the edges. Furthermore, it can also be used to prevent a knot hole from gum-bleeding into the top finish. A good sealer has the property to protect the top surface of the wooden item without hiding the wooden grains.

How does a wood sealer work

A major reason behind the popularity and success of wood sealers is its convenience and easy-to-use attribute. A wood sealer works on the principle of penetrating the pores on the wooden surface i.e. when a sealer is applied on the wood, it hardens. This results in the hardening of the whole wooden surface and at the same time gives it a polished and refined look without hiding the grains.

Different types of wood sealers

It is fundamental to understand the applications of a wood sealer and other finishing products before jumping on to buying one of these for a DIY task. Wood sealers come in a large variety for indoor and outdoor applications and which one you choose solely depends on your requirement. Perhaps you want to give the wooden floor in your bedroom a smoother and shinier appearance, or you may want to put up a modern water-proof fence in back yard – these applications will affect the selection of the wood sealer.

There are a number of wood sealers which are now easily available on different webstores and in the market. Wood sealers differ from each other on the basis of their quality, time taken to dry, thickness and consistency of the spray/liquid, ease of application, number of coats required, cost and durability.

What is the purpose of a wood sealer (indoors and outdoors)

The selection of the right wood sealer depends on the purpose you want it for. Many applications require the protection of wood from moisture. Some people need a good stain on their indoor wooden surface for a better appearance and some want to prevent holes and roughness of the surface. We suggest that you first determine the purpose you want to use a sealer for and then look for the wood sealers available in the market having the features of your requirement.


All the sealers we picked have been reviewed and discussed in detail. In addition to this, we also suggest you carry out a concise research regarding each product’s application procedure, warranty and cost. This will give you a set criteria and help you make a better choice.