Do you want to protect your garage floor from spills, stains, and other damage?
Garage floors are exposed to a lot of abuse. From oil drips and gasoline spills to kids playing with toys, it's no wonder that most garage floors need some sort of protection.
If you want the best protection for your garage floor, then we recommend using an epoxy coating. This is the strongest type of coating available on the market today.
Let's get right into how to apply garage floor epoxy.
How to Apply Garage Floor Epoxy – Pro Tips
Make sure you have all of your equipment ready before you start applying garage floor epoxy. Make sure you have tarpaulins and some disposable overalls so that when things go wrong you can clean up easier.
You will want to protect every surface in your garage from any spillages, and using a pair of disposable overalls means that when it's time for cleanup, you can just throw them in the bin without worrying about washing or cleaning anything else.
When it comes to the epoxy mix, only mix what is required and don't make excesses. Never add accelerators or hardeners to your mixture unless it specifically states that you can do so.
Accelerators speed up the curing process, but can also make your garage floor more brittle and prone to cracking. Hardeners increase the durability of your epoxy coating but you need to ensure that no harm is done if added. Always read the manufacturer's instructions before you proceed with mixing your proportions of ingredients.
Always wear a pair of disposable overalls when applying any type of epoxy products to your garage floors. When using strong chemicals like this, there is never any way to tell how they will interact with clothing or skin, better safe than sorry.
You'll want to protect yourself from spills and splashes by wearing high rubber boots as well. With these on you'll be able to easily wipe up any spillages without having to worry about getting any chemicals on your skin.
Durability, ease of use, and looks when applying epoxy to your garage floor
Applying epoxy to your garage floor is much easier than some DIYers are willing to admit. The main cause of difficulty lies in choosing the right type of products and making sure that they will be durable enough for your needs.
To give you a bit more insight into what makes a good epoxy coating, let's talk about durability, ease of use, and looks.
Durability when applying garage floor epoxy
Epoxies are regarded as being among the strongest coatings on the market today. There are many types available on the market today and most feature between 2-5 year warranty periods depending on the brand name or manufacturer.
This means if anything were to go wrong with them within this time period then you could have it replaced without any hassle.
You will also notice that the tougher epoxies tend to be a lot harder to work with since not only do they set faster but they are much more likely to damage your tools if you apply too much pressure when spreading it out evenly.
Ease of use when applying garage floor epoxy
This depends on which garage floor coating you decide to use.
There are two types of products available on the market today, water-based and solvent-based coatings. Solvent-based coatings are easier to use as they require less preparation and cause fewer problems while mixing.
They can also cover a wider area per gallon than water-based products without changing the ratio of ingredients. However, this comes at an expense as most solvent products emit strong fumes during application, which can cause discomfort for some people.
Water-based epoxies are more expensive but they are better to apply since you will have fewer issues with clogging up your tools during use and it is easier to clean up after application. Plus, the odor of these products is much less hazardous than solvent-based coatings and dissipates quickly once applied.
Looks when applying garage floor epoxy
Even though a good garage floor coating is meant to last a long time and be durable enough not to peel or fade over time, many DIYers choose them mainly because of how great they look in the end.
The smooth finish of an epoxy primer makes for easy cleaning as well as providing a nice stained surface that blends in nicely with most home decor motifs.
When choosing an epoxy coating for your garage floor, make sure to look at the different types available and decide whether you want one that will be easy to clean or if you would like a finish that is more on the decorative side.
Disadvantages of epoxy flooring
Even though epoxy, in general, is a good idea, there are some disadvantages to the whole process. These include the following:
Cost of epoxy flooring
One of the biggest problems with using an epoxy coating on your garage floor is the cost. The best products can be found at around $30 a gallon, which would mean a total outlay of more than 400 dollars for enough to cover just 500 square feet.
Protection from spills and bumps when using epoxy
With such an expensive product you will want to make sure that it covers all your bases and keeps you protected against accidents in addition to looking good. This means that you'll have to use extra protection when applying it to avoid any spillages or bumps in the future dirt/oil stains, etc.
Some types of epoxies are much harder to apply than others depending on how durable you want the finish to be.This means that if you are not careful when applying them, they could end up looking uneven and full of bumps, meaning extra work for you to smooth it out again.
Damage to your tools
Some of the stronger epoxies on the market today tend to be pretty hard and brittle in texture.
This means that if you are not careful when applying them, they could end up scratching or damaging your trowels or rollers. Some epoxies can even dissolve certain types of tools if you are not careful, so make sure to read the instructions beforehand and pay extra attention during application.
Time needed to apply epoxy
Once you have chosen a type of coating and purchased it from a local supplier, you will then need to get out your toolbox and start working on your flooring.
Depending on the size of your garage, this job could take anywhere between one day and as long as two weeks. Most experts recommend getting everything prepared before starting so that once you've spread the product over the surface area, there is no going back.
Common epoxy questions people ask
Here are the most common questions people ask when it comes to applying garage floor epoxy.
Where can I buy an epoxy coating?
Epoxies are available in most large hardware stores and home improvement shops, as well as online through websites such as Amazon.com. For the best quality products, it is good to go with a local supplier so that you can get advice from them about which type of coating would be the safest and easiest one for you to use.
How much does an epoxy garage floor cost?
The price of a garage floor coating depends greatly on which brand you choose. The cheapest ones available are less than $10 per gallon, while more durable brands can reach up to $500 or even more.
This makes it difficult for homeowners to decide based on looks alone whether they will save money in the long run if they bought a cheap product or splurge on a top-of-the-line one.
How long do epoxy coatings last?
The best kinds of epoxies for garage floors can last up to 20 years before you need to apply a new coat over them again, which makes it clear why so many homeowners are willing to invest in coating their flooring with this product.
It is important that when cleaning your floor after spills, accidents or any other damage has been done, you use a safe cleaning agent and avoid damaging the coating underneath as much as possible to keep it looking good.
Moreover, if you want to get the best results out of your flooring, you must avoid exposure to extreme sun or rain.
These conditions can cause cracks and water damage, so make sure that you have a cover available for when there are storms in the forecast.
Can I Epoxy my garage floor myself?
The answer to this question will depend on your experience with different DIY projects and how much time you have available for the job.
Applying a garage floor epoxy coating is not that difficult, but it does require that you can work safely without damaging the already existing surface.
If you are not very experienced in performing home improvement projects, it is a good idea to hire a professional contractor instead.
He or she will most likely be able to do the job much faster than you would and will also have access to the specialized tools that are necessary for ensuring smooth application.
Can I paint over my epoxy flooring?
Most people decide to use an epoxy coating to protect their garage floors, so once they have applied the first coat they do not repaint them.
However, there are some cases where you would need to repaint or apply another layer of finish if anything happens (spillages, scratches, etc..) – usually by professionals that know what they are doing.
Do I need to use specific tools to apply an epoxy coating?
You will need a paintbrush, roller, or other tools that you already have at home to apply the epoxy on your garage flooring.
If you want it done properly, though, most experts recommend using concrete coating spreaders and other professional machines to avoid leaving any uneven patches.
How do I extend the life of my epoxy garage floor?
The best way of extending the lifespan of your new coat is by cleaning it regularly with products specially designed for this purpose.
This does not involve scrubbing too hard or using chemicals that could damage your surface – just plain water will suffice. Also, make sure that the products you use are safe for plastic materials if you use such material for your flooring.
What if I spill something on my epoxy garage floor?
Unfortunately, many people have already experienced the frustration of spilling wine, motor oil, or another liquid on their brand new garage floors and are afraid that it will damage them right away.
Fortunately, most epoxies are good at resisting different liquids to prevent damages – especially spills like these.
The only thing you need to worry about is handling chemical substances too roughly so as not to scratch the protective layer underneath them.
This means that even if you spill some bleach on your garage floor, all you have to do is clean off with some water afterward
What is a concrete hardener?
Concrete hardeners are compounds that you can use to strengthen the surface of your garage. They can be applied lightly over the existing epoxy coating so that it will last longer and protect the underlying product better.
This also makes for easier cleaning in case of spills or stains, as well as making it stronger against scratches and other damage. If you have just applied your coating recently, it might be a good idea to wait before considering this option.
Final thoughts when it comes to applying garage floor epoxy
It is not very difficult to apply an epoxy coating on your garage floor but it requires some tools and an understanding of what you need to do to achieve the best results.
If you are not sure whether or not you can do this yourself, it is a good idea to hire a contractor instead so that your new layer of protective finish will last much longer.
Just make sure that he or she uses quality products for the application process as well as concrete hardener compounds if they are available at a home improvement store near you in order to yield the best result possible.