Today’s garage is more likely to serve double-duty as a workshop for the do-it-yourselfer in the family in addition to being a parking place for the family’s automobile. All the more reason to considering applying concrete floor sealer to preserve and protect this much-used and heavily trafficked space.
Concrete floor sealers
Concrete floor sealers are designed to protect the surface from spills, dust and dirt accumulation, ultra-violet rays, and other hazards that can shorten the concrete floor’s useful life. Not all concrete sealers are created alike.
There is a concrete floor sealer made specifically for indoor use and another that should be used outdoors for sealing patios and driveways. If you are not sure of the proper type of sealer for your application, ask the salesman who sells the product to get the best concrete sealer for garage.
The garage floor is subjected to a variety of substances that can stain it, including gasoline, oil, antifreeze, de-icing salt, and other grime carried onto it by your car wheels. Because concrete floors are porous, these substances can not only discolor your floor, they can also cause it to crack, weather, and deteriorate.
The garage floor sealer not only protects the garage floor from damage but also enables you to walk and park onto a smooth, attractive surface that resists slipping and staining.
Garage floor epoxy sealers are among the most popular for the durable finish they offer. Many garage floor sealers also include a non-slip additive as one of their ingredients, and this makes your garage floor a safer environment especially when the floor gets wet.
Garage floor sealers are tailor-made for the DIY people as they are easy to apply so long as you prepare the surface properly and follow certain directions. Garage floor sealers require a thoroughly clean surface so that they will adhere properly, so sweep over your garage floor with a heavy broom and then use a commercial oil degreaser to remove any existing grease stains.
After the garage floor has been washed and brushed, be sure it’s completely dry before applying garage floor sealer.
Concrete sealers might be toxic or flammant so protect yourself
Because garage floor sealer contains chemicals that can prove toxic if splashed onto the skin or inhaled, it’s important to wear protective gloves, eyeglasses, and clothing, including a mask while applying the sealant. Also, make sure the area is well ventilated.
Good ventilation and careful attention to safety are extremely important when applying a concrete floor sealer, especially in a small interior room with no windows. The fumes generated in solvent-based sealers are most often toxic and on regular basis not anything you want to breathe.
It would be best to not only open all windows and doors but to also wear a mask. If the sealing of the floor is going to take more than a few minutes, it is also wise to take periodic breaks and get some fresh air. Depending on the floor, of course, you can’t just drop the roller in the middle of the floor.
Another word of caution when applying an acrylic or solvent-based concrete floor sealer is that the product is extremely flammable. Just like you would not smoke around gasoline, make sure there are no cigarettes or any other sources of ignition anywhere near the work area.
Keep the garage doors fully open or bring in a fan for ventilation.
Before applying a concrete floor sealer, you should do any other work that you may want to do to the floor. If you are thinking of doing a stain or dye, do so before the sealer is applied. You may also apply several coats of an epoxy-based product to give the floor more protection and finish of your concrete floor.
There are two basic types of concrete floor sealing products. The first is a surface type sealer that adds a lustrous, glossy look to the floor. It will be on top of the concrete floor and it will provide protection while also enhancing the appearance of the floor. The main disadvantage of this type of sealer is that it can sometimes become slippery.
The second type of sealer is called a penetrating sealer. This sealer penetrates down into the microscopic cracks and pores in the cement and makes the cement floor quite waterproof. They are used primarily in industrial applications like a warehouse floor where functionality and safe footing take precedence over beauty and décor.
Sealing a garage floor is a fairly straight-forward process. Garages are susceptible to water and chemicals from our cars. A good concrete floor sealer can keep water from damaging the surface and it can also make a dull and drab finish look more attractive.
Applying the concrete sealer
Preparation is the hardest part of the job. You will need to remove everything from the floor and do a thorough sweeping to get rid of any dirt and debris. Next, check for any cracks or holes in the concrete and repair them if necessary.
It’s important to apply the sealer evenly with a long-handled roller brush, working from the farthest corner of the room all the way to the exit door so that you don’t have to track over the freshly applied sealant while it is drying. Take care that there is no area of the floor where the sealer is too thickly or thinly applied.
Allow the sealer to dry overnight or until it is not tacky to the touch. Other touches such as adding some texture by sprinkling in special gritty material can help keep the floor from becoming too slippery. One of those things is quartz sand, if you sprinkle it the surface can be as gritty as sandpaper. I’d practice before sealing as you don’t want it to be too gritty really.
Garage floor sealer takes as much as three to four days to completely dry, so plan your sealer application project over a long weekend or a time when you won’t need to use the garage for parking or workshop projects.
Garage floor sealing is a manageable project if you prepare it well. Make the surface clean and dry before starting and remember to have good air ventilation during the sealing. This should get you through the project easily.
Also, sealing an old garage floor is as important as sealing new one. In a sense, you get more gains when you do some work on the old surfaces as they aren’t new and shiny.