DIY: How To Apply Epoxy Floors
Why Coat Garage Floors with Epoxy?
Many of you may be wondering why you would want to paint over the existing concrete with epoxy in the first place. There are multiple advantages to ditching the boring concrete floor and upgrading to an epoxy versoin instead. Here are our favorite reasons to make the switch
- Create an easy to clean, seamless surface: if you have ever had your car leak fluid onto your floors, you know how unsightly and impossible to clean concrete can be. This is because concrete (unlike epoxy) is poreous - allowing bits of fluid and filth to penetrate below the surface and stain your floors permanentally
- Safety Epoxy floors can have additives build right in which make the garage floor heat, checmical, and impack resistant. Most epoxy kits even come with a non slip additive to help prevent falls
- Resale Value- althought epoxy floors aren't going to make a huge differece - they are a dramatic home upgrade that many people can appreciate
- Aesthetic: Coatings are usually available in an array of colors and patterns to fit your specific style.
- Chemically resistant: Epoxy coatings can survive continued exposure to potent chemicals, which is perfect for warehouses or plants that may be exposed to such materials.
How much does it cost to apply epoxy floors?
The number varies widely depending on multiple factors, including the size of your garage, and the type of epoxy you purchase. Typically, an epoxy kit complete with everything you need (including decorative flakes etc for a garage that measures 400sq ft will cost you around $5-$700
What You'll Need:
- paint roller and extension
- nylon paintbrush
- stiff-bristled push broom
- safety goggles
- carbon filter paint odor mask
- plastic spackle knife
- floor scraper
- 5 gallon bucket
- Two-part high-gloss epoxy kit (1 gal. /250 sf.)
- concrete floor patch
- degreaser painter’s tape
- 1/2"-nap roller cover
- clay cat litter
- Make sure your garage is at 60 degrees or higher, and your slab is at a minimum of 50 degrees. It will be near impossible for the epoxy to set if you try to do this in colder temperatures
- Assemble your tools before you start. Epoxy is a time sensitive procedure
- Apply more epoxy than you think you'll need
- Make sure to plan an exit strategy - don't paint yourself into a corner! (it’s funny, but we're serious)
- Yes, you need the flakes. They provide traction on in the floor
Step 1: A thorough cleaning.
- Use a broom to completely sweep your garage, including against walls and garage door tracks!
- Scrape up any hard dirt or grease with a scraper. Apply full concentration degreaser and get up all of the grease with the scrape
- You will use the dry cat litter to pull any remaining oils out of the floor
- Use diluted degreaser to wash the entire floor. This must be done quickly and excess water cleaned up with a squeegee. the point is to not over wet the floors
- Apply etch treatment as per the manufacturer’s instructions (Mix the citric acid concrete etch with warm water per the instructions. Then apply, scrub, and squeegee off the floor in the same manner as the degreaser. The citric acid will help open the top pores of the concrete so the epoxy adheres well.)
- Allow to dry completely
Step 2: Making the Perfect Surface to Apply the Epoxy
- Test your garage for any existing sealer. Do this by dripping water onto the slab. If the water beads up, then you have a sealant and that can prevent your epoxy from adhering.
- If you do have a sealant, then do another round with the etching coating.
- Patch any cracks or damages to the concrete surface (they will show through the epoxy)
- Mix concrete patch at a 1 part a to 2 part b solution and allow to dry for 8 hours
- clean the garage floors again
Step 3: Prepping the Epoxy
- Your epoxy kit should have come with a large and small can. The large can of Part B may feel light but it is only partially full so that you can pour Part A into it.
- Pour Part A into Part B.
- Then mix thoroughly until the liquid is homogenous.
- Allow the reaction to happen! Dependent upon temperature, allow the epoxy to react for the recommended time on the container. Do not cheat this step otherwise you will have a non-hardening sticky mess.
Step 4: Applying Epoxy
- One of the most important steps is to "cut in" the epoxy. This means going around to all of the edges of your garage floor and using a paintbrush to get the epoxy right up against the walls. Don't get too far ahead of rolling because you’ll want to keep the epoxy wet until the flakes are applied.
- Use a roller and start rolling the epoxy out in 4' x 4' sections. Keeping the wet edge, lightly broadcast the surface flakes into the wet epoxy.
- Allow the floor to cure (usually 1-3 days)
Enjoy your new, durable, chemical, heat, impact resistant epoxy flooring!