How to Apply Epoxy Garage Floor Coating

How to Apply Epoxy Garage Floor Coating

How to Apply Epoxy Garage Floor Coating

Concrete flooring is hard and durable, but with all the vehicles and equipment that are used and stored in a garage, it is possible to cause some damage. Chips, cracks, scratches and stains are all frequent occurrences for garage floors, and they compromise their integrity and aesthetics.

The best solution for preventing this sort of damage is to apply a commercial epoxy floor coating, which can be accomplished by following a few simple steps.

Examine and Evaluate the Floor

Before a commercial epoxy floor coating can be applied, it is necessary to evaluate and prepare the floor so that it will hold the coating well. When applied correctly, the epoxy coating will resist oil, grease and other damage for several years.

Epoxy coatings are best thought of as a type of paint, and all good house painters know that a successful job depends on careful preparation and planning. You should give yourself a full day to examine and evaluate your floor. While the first coating of epoxy can be applied on the second day, you should allow time for cleaning and filling cracks.

In most cases, only new and unsealed concrete is suitable for epoxy coatings. In addition, it is necessary to see that no moisture is coming through the floor. To check for moisture, secure a plastic bag over the center of the floor with tape. After 24 hours, lift one corner of the bag to see if it is wet underneath. If it is, the epoxy will not hold and you will require professional help or a new floor.

New concrete floors require a minimum of 28 days to fully cure before epoxy coatings can be applied, but many experts recommend two months just to be sure the floor has thoroughly dried. Finally, for best results with the epoxy, the garage should remain between 15° C and 30° C for the duration of the job.

Cleaning the Floor

If the floor has been previously painted, the paint must be stripped before it can be cleaned. Once the paint is removed, you will then want to use a scraper or a similar tool to loosen any hard debris that may be stuck to the floor. After the surface is fairly smooth, the floor can be swept.

If the floor has any oil or grease stains, these will have to be cleaned with a degreaser solution and stiff-bristled brush. When the stain appears to be gone, clean the spot with a towel. This process may need to be repeated several times before the stain has been fully removed.

After the grease spots have been removed, it is time for a general cleaning with twenty litres of concrete cleaner and an electric floor scrubber that has a brush attachment or a course scrubbing pad. When you are finished, the dirty cleaning solution should be removed with a shop vac for proper disposal.

Final Preparations

After the floor has been cleaned, it will then need to be etched with a solution of muriatic acid. To do this, you must first wet the garage floor, the driveway and the sides of the driveway with a hose. Then, mix the solution so that it is 10 parts water to one part acid. Pour the solution into a watering can, sprinkle it on the floor and scrub it with a power scrubber for several minutes. The acid solution can then be rinsed away with a large volume of water. Ten minutes of spraying the floor with a hose should do the trick.

The final preparatory task to be completed is to fill any cracks or holes in the floor with epoxy crack filler. The epoxy should levelled and smoothed with a putty knife and given four hours to dry.

Applying the Epoxy

The amount of commercial epoxy floor coating you will have to use depends upon the square footage of the floor. The batch should be mixed and applied within the given timeframe. A strip of tape is then placed under the door so that it can be closed when you are finished. Use a paintbrush to apply about 10 centimetres of epoxy around the perimeter of the floor, and then use a 20 centimetre epoxy roller to complete the job. It is recommended to apply the epoxy in a series of W patterns about one metre in width. Each pattern should be finished within one minute.

When the entire floor has been coated, you can close the garage door, place a do-not-enter sign on the outside and wait at least 16 hours for it to dry before applying an optional second coat.

Matthew Clark is a specialist in the field of concrete finishes including polishing, resurfacing & coatings.

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