Garage floor coatings are one of the most cost effective and aesthetically pleasing ways to enhance a plain gray concrete garage floor. These heavy-duty epoxy-based systems don’t just upgrade the feel of the floor, they increase resiliency to stains and tire marks and hide minor flaws.
How to Apply a Garage Floor Coating
- Make sure the area is ventilated
The chemicals used in the process of applying garage floor coatings may produce harmful fumes, so it is important that your work area is properly ventilated. Also be sure to wear proper eye protection as well as gloves as the garage floor coating chemicals can cause damage to your eyes and skin.
- Clean the Concrete Floor
Before painting, the area must first be cleaned thoroughly of dirt and stains. To aid in this step of applying your garage floor coating you may use a 3-to-1 water-to-bleach mixture or a commercial concrete or driveway cleaning product available locally. It is also necessary during this step to wear proper eye and hand protection.
After thoroughly scrubbing the area with the cleaning product rinse the entire area well with clean water spraying from the back of the garage to the front. Tough stains may be removed using a pressure washer.
- Repair the Cracks
After the floor is clean and dry repair any cracks found in the concrete you wish to apply the garage floor coating. For small cracks a concrete repair compound may be used. For larger cracks use a concrete patch. The cracks must be very clean and dry before applying the compound.
- Etch the Surface
Etching is a process that opens up the pores of concrete to allow for greater absorption of paint. To determine whether etching is necessary in your garage floor coating job sprinkle a small amount of water on the floor. If the water is absorbed by the concrete slowly apply a commercially available concrete etcher. After doing so you may notice it “fizzing”. This is normal and means that it is working.
It is important to allow the floor to dry completely (at least overnight) before beginning to paint. To speed up the process fans may be used. If the etching is performed correctly the concrete will have a texture similar to medium-grit sandpaper.
- Apply the Primer
Before applying paint a primer coat is necessary. Use a long-handled paint roller to apply the primer coat. It is critical a good primer coat is applied to ensure your garage floor coating lasts for years to come.
- Apply the First Coat of Paint
Be sure that the primer coat is completely dry before applying the top coat of paint (allow at least 8 hours for primer to dry). Ensure that your selected garage floor coating paint is thoroughly mixed before applying a thin first coat. Allow enough time for the first coat to dry (24 hours) deciding whether to apply a second coat.
Tips for garage floor coating success:
- Use nylon brushes
- Avoid applying more than two coats of paint
- Wait 24 hours before walking on the freshly painted surface
- Wait a week before driving on it
- Touch up heavy-traffic areas once a year