DIY epoxy flooring in 5 steps

DIY epoxy flooring in 5 steps

Does anyone give it much thought as to why someone would do a DIY epoxy garage floor? How many homes have you visited that had the basement floor painted?

The answer may be none, but there is always the first time. If you dislike the dirty look of your concrete basement or garage floor, consider applying an epoxy finish to give it a shiny, smooth, and brighter look.

It’s simpler than ever these days as epoxy floor kits are becoming more and more common. Some arguments could be better.

They aren’t quality in some places, but you can research them. If it’s a set sold as a kit when the primer and epoxy are sold on the shelves, you should be good to go.

What exactly is epoxy flooring? For example, take the showroom and garage of a dealership; their floors are clean and shiny with a high luster.

Their garage area looks excellent even though cars are repeatedly fixed and driven over the concrete. That is the beauty behind epoxy flooring: it is very durable.

Epoxy floor coating is made of resin and a hardener. When they are mixed, the bonding results in a thermosetting reaction.

The result is a tough sealant that strengthens concrete, cleans easily, resists chemical absorption, and provides a showroom look to your concrete floor.

Essential tools needed for painting epoxy

Applying epoxy paint to a basement floor is relatively easy with the proper tools. The items needed before getting started are Protective clothing, rubber gloves, mask, eye protection, paint pan, roller, paint brushes, masking tape, drill to mix paint, paint mixing paddle, gallon bucket, 5-gallon bucket, and thinner.

Once all the listed supplies are in order, the measurements of the concrete flooring that will be epoxied with epoxy floor paint are needed. In general, one gallon will only cover an area that is 24×24.

Step one: clean the floor

The next step involves prepping the concrete floor with plain dish soap and water and allowing it to dry completely. Also, pay attention to any stains from oil and paint on the floor; remove these stains from the concrete using a thinner.

After removing the stains, rinse thoroughly with water and allow to dry for 24 hours.

If you’re working in a space that doesn’t allow water use, use a vacuum to clean it entirely and use thinner and water on the stains only. Most importantly, it’s clean of anything other than concrete.

Step two: apply acid to the floor

In this next step, protective clothing, gloves, mask, and goggles are needed, as muriatic acid and water will be applied to the concrete floor.

The formula to follow is one cup of muriatic acid to one gallon of water. Mix the two ingredients in a bucket and pour some of the mixtures onto the concrete floor.

Take a broom with stiff bristles and brush it over the entire floor. Follow up with another plain cold water rinse.

We do this because poured concrete cured isn’t the best surface for anything to adhere to. When we use muriatic acid, it will make the surface so that the epoxy can adhere.

If you can’t use muriatic acid, the same can be achieved by grinding the surface and vacuuming it clean. Like this, it would be the first and second step of this guide.

Epoxy garage flooring works because its durable and chemical resistant

Step three: mix the epoxy with hardener

Next, skip this step if the epoxy floor coating is a one-component epoxy-like epoxy floor paint. If it is the two-component epoxy paint and hardener, they will need to be mixed into a five-gallon bucket for five minutes.

Use a drill and paint mixing paddle to mix the two components thoroughly. I’ve had trouble with poorly mixed epoxy, so I don’t recommend mixing with a stick for beginners.

If the manufacturer label says to wait for a time, do so. If it’s ready to use immediately, proceed to the next step. I recommend using epoxy, which has a more extended working period for beginners.

Fast-setting epoxy paints start to get gum-like fast, so it might not work out for a beginner.

Step four: add tape and paint the edges

Using the masking tape, tape off the edges of the wall along the floor to prevent the epoxy from getting onto the walls. Using a flat, narrow paintbrush, paint along the edges of the walls and any other unreachable small areas with a roller.

Now, it’s crucial here that you remove the tapes after you have done the borders. The epoxy will harden into a rubber-like coating, so if you get a lot on your tapes, it will be hard to get them off nicely once the epoxy has cured.

You can’t remove them after you have coated the floor, as they need to be left alone for a few days. You should check the manufacturer’s label to see what it says about when it can be walked on.

Step Five: use a paint roller to paint the surface

Next, pour some of the paint into the roller pan, roll the paint roller into the paint to coat the roller, and roll the epoxy paint onto the floor, starting at the far edge of the room and working your way outwards.

It would help if you worked systematically. Epoxy with hardener has a short working time, so you need to plan when you work. You mix the stuff and then start rolling as fast as you can. If you work like a painter in old movies, the epoxy will only be workable once you get to the other end.

This, of course, depends on the hardener. The ones we use at balconies have 30 minutes of working time, so it’s good to check. If it’s a short time, get one of your friends to help you so they can mix more if needed on a big surface.

Allow the paint to dry completely for at least 24 hours before walking on the floor. More time might be needed depending on the thickness of the layer. Depending on the paint, it may need to be painted twice.

Conclusion

Transform your garage into a modern workspace with a DIY epoxy flooring project. Not only will it provide an aesthetically pleasing look, but it will also protect your garage from oil leaks, stains and cracks.

Epoxy flooring is a perfect solution for homeowners who want to create a space that is both functional and visually appealing. You can easily park your car on the surface without worrying about any spills and stains. 

However, it’s essential to note that epoxy flooring has a hard surface, which means that any installation mistakes can be challenging to fix. If you make a mistake during installation, you may need to cut the surrounding area with a utility knife and pour a patch like you would with concrete.

Additionally, working with hardeners requires quick work. For slow workers, it’s better to use a product that doesn’t require a hardener as they are easier to use and closer to traditional paint.

Apart from these two issues, epoxy flooring has many benefits. It is durable, long-lasting, and easy to clean.

However, it’s crucial to understand that using it in areas prone to extreme temperature changes, such as garages, can cause it to crack. So, before deciding on an epoxy flooring project, it’s essential to consider the specific needs of your garage.