Complete Guide On How To Do Epoxy Flooring In Garage
Garage floors are often overlooked when it comes to flooring, but they can be just as important as any other surface in your home. Not only do they need to be tough and durable, but they also need to look good. Epoxy flooring is a great way to achieve both of these goals. This guide will teach you everything you need to know about epoxy flooring, from how to prep your garage to the best way to apply the epoxy.
How To Repair Cracks Holes And Spalling
Unless your garage floor is new, there’s probably something you’ll have to repair before you coat over it.
Fixing a crack, hole, chip, or some spalling isn’t as hard as you might think.
I use a product called CrackWeld to repair my garage floors. They have an easy to use diy kit made just for homeowners and diy’ers.
I use it to repair cracks, spalling from salt damage, chipped areas, and small holes.
See the video below for a tutorial on now to use it.
What Is Epoxy Flooring For Garages
Before we make it all sound too easy, we must point out that using an epoxy coating to cover your garage floor isnt the same as merely painting a bedroom wall. Epoxy is a resinous coating that when mixed together, hardens and bonds to concrete. If you dont use a 100% solids epoxy and you dont prep the concrete properly,
There is a chance that the floor will bubble or peel when hot tires drive over it. Lets be honest though, professional epoxy floor kits are a completely different cost structure and you are talking about spending several thousand dollars instead of several hundred. Some of the kits we review in these articles are meant for the DIYr and not the professional. If you are looking for a professional floor installation company, we have many recommendations since we have been in the industry for so long.
Lets get down to business. Epoxy floor coating is actually a combination of two different compounds, and also must not be confused with an industrial epoxy floor. An epoxy floor is thicker, with a depth of at least 1/16 inch, and tends to be used in industrial and commercial premises.
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Clean Oil Spills And Remove Paint Etch Concrete
Chances are, you’ll have a fair amount of gunk on your concrete floor. You will need to clean everything as good as you can prior to applying epoxy. Use a rigid bristle scrub brush to clean oil spots. Pour concrete etcher on each oil spot, let soak in, and then scrub. For paint drops, use a razor or orbital sander to get rid of them.
Another great tool for removing gunk from the floor is called a wet concrete polisher. If you have one, it will make removing paint drops and other gunk a breeze. This is not necessary though.
Here is a photo of a floor I did that had been painted in the past. If you are in this situation, make sure to clean the floor very well. Then, scratch up the surface so the new epoxy will be able to bond to it. For this process, I rented a floor buffing machine and used both the black and green scotch pads.
Is Epoxy Coating Perfect For Your Garage Floor
Epoxy floor coatings work best on a concrete floor with no large cracks, chips, or spalls. A brand-new concrete slab is best, but you can use epoxy coating once you repair and patch the cracks on older concrete. You can quickly fix minor chips and cracks with any concrete patching product. However, ensure that the patched areas get dry and cured fully before applying the epoxy. It would be best to ensure that the concrete is degreased and properly etched, as directed by the manufacturer or the epoxy.
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Are Epoxy Floors Good For Basements
Epoxy floors are definitely a good option for basements. In fact, they are often used in commercial and industrial settings because they are so durable. However, there are a few things you should keep in mind if youre thinking about doing an epoxy floor in your basement:
- Make sure the concrete is clean and free of any dirt or debris before starting the project.
- Be sure to use a primer before applying the epoxy coating. This will help the epoxy to better adhere to the concrete and will also improve the overall look of the finished floor.
- If you are going to be using your basement as a living space, be sure to choose a clear coat or top coat.
Doing an epoxy floor in your basement is a great way to make the space more durable and easy to clean. Just be sure to follow the above tips and youll have a great-looking floor that will last for many years!
Epoxy Floor Coating Cost By Type
Depending on the type of epoxy used, pricing varies from $0.37 to 1.40 per square foot for materials. Water-based epoxy is the cheapest, while 100% solid epoxy can cost up to three times more.
Epoxy Floor Coating Cost By Type
How To Paint A Garage Floor: Brush On Epoxy Paint Around The Perimeter
Tape the area directly underneath the garage door with duct or masking tape, then brush a 4-in. strip of epoxy along the walls and against the tape.
While waiting for the crack filler to cure, use a high-quality natural-bristle paint brush and cut in the floor edges. Also, tape the area directly underneath the garage door with masking or duct tape, allowing you to shut the door overnight. This is intended to keep out dust, dirt, pets and children until the floor is dry. And put a Do Not Enter sign along with tape across the doorway leading to the garage from the house.
Apply Epoxy To The Floor
Once youve mixed the epoxy, its time to apply it to the entire floor. Apply the primer coat before epoxy. Pour paint chips into a paint tray and then use a paint roller to apply the epoxy mix to the floor. Start in one corner of the room and work your way out of one coat first. Be sure to apply a thickfinal top coat of epoxy to the whole floor.
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Preparing The Garage Space
The garage will have to be completely empty, included anything you have on shelves you might need to access. Consider hiring a moving company or some friends. Youll more than likely also need to pay for truck rental and a temporary storage unit.
- Moving companies cost $40/hour per mover.
- A 12 moving truck rental costs $20/day plus mileage fees.
- Short-term storage unit rental costs $25$110/month depending on the size.
Epoxy And Color Flake Application
The part youve been anxiously waiting for epoxy application. Once your mixture is good to go, its time to apply. For the easiest application, pour the epoxy into a roller tray and begin by using your paintbrush to cover the trim of the garage floors.
Remember, youll want to do this section by section, so choose manageable sizes to work in. Youll need to work fast enough that your trim epoxy application does not dry before you get into rolling. When rolling, be sure to meet that trim and go over it once more to blend the coats together.
If you are using color flakes for your garage floor, add them as you go on top of the wet sections so they stick. While working as quickly as possible, start with a light-handed distribution, shaking the flakes between spread fingers, and building up to the desired appearance.
Applying a second coat? If your specific epoxy brand requires two coats, do not apply the color flakes until after the second coat. You will also need to wait 12 hours between applications.
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Read Through The Instructions
Before starting any floor coating project the most important piece of information is your instructions. Please read them carefully before beginning. There are hundreds of epoxy, urethane, novolac, and polyspartic floor coatings on the market and coating application steps will differ from one another. It is vital that you carefully read the instructions that come with your floor coating product before applying to ensure you have all the necessary materials on hand. Failure to read instructions and ensure you have a proper working environment can lead to failing floors after application.
How To Apply An Epoxy Garage Floor Coating A Diy Guide
Updated By Shea
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Learning the basics of how to apply an epoxy garage floor coating isnt hard. A quick search on the internet will reveal a list of simple 8 step plans to get it done or an abundance of short videos to watch. They make it look easy enough. However, the more stressful part is when you discover in the middle of the application process that you need to know more about the finer details of applying a coating. Thats when you realize that you have more questions than answers.
This DIY garage floor coating application guide is designed as one of the more comprehensive and detailed instruction manuals. We will cover in detail the application process of a multiple coat floor system that consists of an epoxy primer coat, 100% solids epoxy base coat , and a clear polyurethane, polyurea, or epoxy top coat.
In addition, we also discuss application of the newer and easier to install single-part polyurea garage floor coatings.
Note to our readers: This article has been updated to include the latest information as well as application tips for the newly popular single-part polyurea floor coatings as well.
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Prepare Room For Painting
Use a suitable cement-based patching compound to seal all holes and cracks. Make sure the repair is smooth. Allow plenty of time for the area to dry fully after it has been repaired.
Paint that is peeling should be scraped off and removed. Mildew should be removed using a product safe for use on painted surfaces. To improve adhesion, do not apply to surfaces previously finished with two-component epoxy paints/coatings. Do not etch over painted surfaces.
Cleaning And Priming The Floor
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Diy Vs Professional Application
As with any other home improvement project you will likely ask yourself, If I do this myself, how much money can I save? You will usually find out it is far cheaper to do most projects yourself. This will initially be the case with epoxying your garage floor. However, if you choose to go this route, youll likely find you are in way over your head, need to rent or buy a lot of additional equipment, and dont have the amount of time needed to do the project correctly.
All of these factors will eventually add up to an overall cost comparable to a professional, but you will have paid for a huge headache in the process. Epoxy professionals and the project cost might be tough to stomach, but at the end of the day you are paying for their experience. Your epoxy garage floor will be applied appropriately the first time and a lot faster than you could complete the project yourself. When it comes to this home improvement product it is recommended that you consult your local epoxy garage floor professional.
Required Tools And Supplies
The following is a list of tools and supplies that you will need. If you are purchasing a garage floor epoxy kit from an online vendor, some of these tools and supplies may be included with the kit.
We also included optional tools such as 18 rollers. They are not mandatory, but the wider rollers make the application process go much quicker. We highly recommend these if you are covering areas larger than 500 ft².
- Tarp for mixing station
- Variable speed drill
Spiked shoes allow you to walk out onto the coating during installation and for tossing the color flakes. We recommend a pair for each installer.
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Maintenance Of Your Epoxy Coating
Your applied epoxy coating should last 1012 years if its well looked after and is subjected to normal wear and tear. Maintenance includes
- Wiping up all stains immediately or scrubbing them off with non-caustic cleaners
- Placing a mat inside the door into the garage from outside
- Regular mopping
- Epoxy coating can color under UV rays, so keep your garage door closed whenever possible.
Applying The First Coat
Getting ready for the color base coat after the epoxy primer was applied Photo courtesy of SupremeCrete
Depending on which epoxy coating system you are installing, your first coat will be a primer coat or the color base coat. Contingent on the manufacturer, you will have approximately a 40 minute working window during ideal conditions.
This window will shorten if the temperatures are warmer than ideal and lengthen if its cooler. Pay close attention to this window.
If you are applying polyurea, then you have plenty of time to get the product applied. In most cases, you will be working out of a paint tray.
Make sure your chip brushes, rollers, and epoxy are staged and ready to go. If this is your color coat and you are applying vinyl color flakes, make sure they are staged and ready as well.
After the epoxy is mixed, immediately start pouring it out in a 1-2 ribbon along the back border of its designated section. Continue working the ribbon back and forth across the entire section until its all poured out.
Once poured out on the floor, start in the back corner and begin rolling it out. Be sure to preload your roller with a ribbon of epoxy first. This will remove air in the roller and alleviate the chances of rolling air bubbles into the coating. Take care to keep the roller loaded at all times. Its OK to roll rather quickly.
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How To Prep A Garage Floor For Epoxy
If you have a new garage or you want to give your old garage a new fresh and clean look, the best way to do it is by using an epoxy coating.
It provides all the benefits you will need to keep your garage looking its best and is durable enough to provide the protection you need that is hard-wearing and long-lasting.
Not only does it upgrade the look of your garage, but it also will increase the resale value of your home in the event that you may be looking to sell it any time in the near future.
Its not a hard DIY project, but you are going to want to make sure you take all the necessary steps to ensure a flawless end result.
Suggestions For The Perfect Epoxy Flooring
- Always be sure to give your floor another good look after cleaning before applying the epoxy to be sure there are no spots you may have overlooked.
- It is always best to measure the humidity and moisture before you start to be sure the conditions are right.
- Make sure you remove all the acid residue before it dries.
- You should never use an all-purpose silicone sealant to repair unwanted cracks or minor dents on your concrete floor because this type of sealant is not designed to be painted over and wont work well with the epoxy.
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Tips For Applying Epoxy Floor Coatings
Applying epoxy floor coatings is almost as simple as rolling paint on a wall or across a porch floor. But before you begin, you need to thoroughly clean and patch the floor to be coated. You should also carefully calculate how much mixture is required to cover the area you wish to coat. Many floor epoxy kits supply only enough for one coat, and you’ll need a minimum of two. Measure the square footage of the area to be coated, and compare that with the coverage supplied by your preferred floor epoxy kit.
Time is of the essence once the epoxy paint and the hardener components are mixedthe epoxy mixture is only workable for about 2 hours. Consider this time frame as you determine how you will paint yourself out of a garage, patio, or room.