How to Seal Stacked Stone Backsplash

Sealing a stacked stone backsplash can help protect it from stains, moisture damage, and everyday wear and tear. With the right sealing products and techniques, you can keep your stacked stone looking beautiful for years to come.

Why Seal a Stacked Stone Backsplash

There are a few key reasons to seal a stacked stone backsplash:

  • Prevent stains – Stacked stone is porous and can absorb liquids, leading to difficult stains from things like wine, coffee, and cooking oils. Sealing creates a protective barrier.
  • Reduce moisture damage – Liquid penetration can cause efflorescence (a white, powdery deposit), plus damage from freezing and thawing. Sealing minimizes moisture absorption.
  • Ease cleaning – Sealed stone resists stains and is much easier to clean by simply wiping with a damp cloth. Unsealed stone requires more intensive scrubbing.
  • Enhance color – Sealing can enhance the natural colors of stone while providing a consistent surface appearance.
  • Extend life – By protecting stacked stone from damage, sealing can significantly extend its usable lifetime.

What Type of Sealer to Use

There are a few common options when choosing a sealer:

  • Silicone sealers – Provide durable water repellency with excellent stain protection. Low odor and easy application.
  • Impregnating sealers – Penetrate deeply and offer long-lasting protection from moisture and stains. Ideal for high traffic areas.
  • Acrylic sealers – Create a thin protective coating on top of the stone for a glossy, enhanced appearance. Less durable than impregnators.
  • Wax-based sealers – Similar to acrylics, wax sealers provide a shiny coating and mild protection. Need frequent reapplication.

For a stacked stone backsplash, an impregnating sealer is generally the best choice. Silicone sealers also work very well. Avoid acrylics and waxes since the protection is less reliable. Always check the manufacturer’s recommendation.

How to Apply a Sealer

Sealing stacked stone is a relatively straightforward process:

1. Clean the Stone

Use a stone-safe cleaner to remove any dirt, grease or residues from the surface. Rinse thoroughly and allow to fully dry before sealing.

2. Mask Off Areas

Use painter’s tape to mask off any areas you don’t want to seal, like countertops or floors. This keeps the sealer only on the backsplash.

3. Follow Manufacturer Instructions

Read and follow all label instructions for application directions, dry times, number of coats, and any specific requirements. Don’t deviate.

4. Apply Sealer Evenly

Use a paintbrush, paint pad, or pump sprayer to apply a thin, even layer across the entire surface. Avoid puddling.

5. Allow Proper Cure Time

Sealer needs time to fully cure and achieve maximum durability. Don’t use the backsplash until fully cured. Refer to directions.

6. Remove Tape and Clean Up

Once cured, carefully remove all masking tape. Clean any sealed areas like countertops with the stone cleaner.

Sealing Maintenance and Reapplication

  • Expect to reseal a stacked stone backsplash every 2-3 years depending on usage and sealer type.
  • For kitchen backsplashes, monitor any apparent wearing or etching of the sealer and reapply as needed.
  • Clean sealed stone with a pH-neutral stone cleaner only. Avoid abrasive cleaners.
  • Avoid using waxes, ammonia, vinegar, bleach and other chemicals on sealed stone.
  • Keep reapplying the same type of sealer. Switching products can compromise performance.

FAQs About Sealing Stacked Stone Backsplashes

Should I seal all sides of stacked stone tiles?

Focus sealing efforts on the surface side of stones only. The mortar used to adhere the stacked stone helps waterproof the backside.

Can I use a stone sealer on grout joints?

Yes, you can seal the grout lines at the same time as the stone. Use a compatible penetrating sealer on both materials.

How long does sealing stacked stone take?

Sealing a typical stacked stone backsplash takes 2-3 hours depending on the sealer used and size of the area. Allow additional time for surface prep and curing.

Can I seal textured or honed stacked stone?

Yes, any type of stacked stone can be sealed effectively as long as proper prep, product selection, and application techniques are followed.

Should sealing stacked stone change the appearance?

A slight darkening effect is common, but quality sealers provide natural looking protection without an artificial or glossy appearance.


By properly sealing your stacked stone backsplash, you can help prevent pesky stains and damage while keeping the stone looking pristine. The best approach is using an impregnating sealer to provide long-lasting and penetrating protection with minimal appearance change. With periodic reapplication and proper care, a sealed stacked stone backsplash will maintain its beauty for many years before needing replacement. Just be sure to follow all manufacturer instructions carefully during application for optimal performance. With the right sealer and techniques, you can easily keep your stacked stone backsplash looking stunning.