Garage Floor Paint

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Garage Floor Paint

Postby hennesse » Thu May 23, 2019 10:14 pm

I'm moving soon, and I have the opportunity to paint my new-to-me detached garage/workshop floor before I move in. I would really like to do this only once before they cart me off to the nursing home (15 years?). I want a nice-looking gray floor that doesn't soak up oil or gasoline, and resists turning tires. Just a hobby motorcycle / woodworking shop, not commercial or industrial - but - I don't mind spending a few extra dollars for a commercial/industrial product if it will go the distance.

If you've painted your garage floor, or have experience with industrial floor coatings, I need your help. Tell me (us) what product you used, and how it turned out. Good experience or bad - doesn't matter - we wanna know!

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Re: Garage Floor Paint

Postby wz507 » Thu May 23, 2019 11:19 pm

2-part epoxy floor coatings have been the workhorse of the industry for many decades. That said, more recently 2-part polyurea floor coatings have made a significant entry into the marketplace, as these materials are known for their toughness and tenacious adhesion to clean concrete surfaces. Polyurea coatings are often top-coated with an aspartic ester coating (another polyurea coating variant), especially when a colorless clear coat is applied over color flake.

The most important part of a successful application of any floor coating on concrete is the preparation of the concrete surface. The concrete surface needs to be free of all contamination – oil, grease, glycol, wax-based sealers, salt, stains, excess moisture, concrete scale, etc. Removal of contaminants is accomplished via abrasion - typically rotary grinder or shot peening. The floor is then cleaned/vacuumed to remove any debris remaining after the cleaning process. This is an absolutely filthy job (you should wear a respirator or at a minimum a damn good dust mask) and everything in the garage will be likewise filthy, so be sure to remove as much from the garage as you possibly can before undertaking this activity. I have seen floors cleaned with rotary grinders that made a huge mess, i.e., dust cloud that looked like a white-out snow storm, and operators that likewise were snow men, and I have seen floors shot-peened with a device employing full time vacuuming, which resulted in a dramatically cleaner process where the operators didn't even wear respiratory protection. Either way be ready for a serious mess.

The above couple paragraphs provide a general introduction to the subject. You can Google some of the key words and read ad nauseum more than you’d ever want to know about all the chemistry along with conflicting pros and cons offered by the myriad vendors of the various coatings. There are many small compounders/formulators out there that tweak each chemistry, thus it is nearly impossible to compare the products of vendor A to vendor B to vendor C etc. Good luck and let us know what you find out.

I personally have polyurea/aspartic ester floor coating with color flake in it that is about 7 years old and holding up fine(concrete was cleaned by shot-peening). I also have friends that have beautiful color flake floors that were prepared via rotary grinding that are likewise holding up well. In all cases oil spills simply wipe up cleanly with no penetration whatsoever.
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Re: Garage Floor Paint

Postby Simon » Sun May 26, 2019 10:56 pm

Go to Garage Journal - there is a whole section on flooring:

You should definitely be able to find some good advice there also.
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Re: Garage Floor Paint

Postby Ferrous_Head » Mon May 27, 2019 1:46 am

Did mine 3 years ago and very happy. 2 part epoxy with a clear top coat over the flakes.

Just be aware there are two part water based paints out there, Don;t bother with them.

Diamond ground mine - some will tell you can get away with an acid etch. You can't.

As always painting is 90 % preparation. The other 10 % is using the right materials/equipment The painting itself is not worth counting..

All up it costs me around $1200 for a double garage size workshop. One of the best investments I have made.
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Re: Garage Floor Paint

Postby Ferrous_Head » Mon May 27, 2019 1:49 am

Oh ! Should have added.

After grinding wash it out completely. I used a high reassure water blaster.

You don't want any dust left behind. Allow it to dry completely before painting.
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Re: Garage Floor Paint

Postby leobrady » Mon May 27, 2019 6:13 am

Used Rustoleum Polycuramine from Home Depot 3.5 years ago on a new construction 24 x24 carport here in Guam. Swept concrete with broom. $1,200 for 2 coats. Cures very quickly at 85 degrees. Very slippery when wet like when washing something.

Cars, motorcycles, dogs, people, gas, oil no effect. Would buy again.

Water based stuff worthless.

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Re: Garage Floor Paint

Postby chuckthebeatertruck » Mon May 27, 2019 9:20 am

Ferrous hit this one on the head. Plus, if you have any hydrostatic pressure under the slab, you'll want the more expensive stuff.

Diamond grinders can be rented cheaply.

Benjamin Moore makes an affordable semi commercial epoxy. It is spread with a squeegee, seriously.

It also is roughly the same cost for high density pvc tiles $4-6 square foot. I have a 750 square shop, 250 is being tile and 500 coated.

A lot of times, it is very cost effective to have it done vs yourself.

Beware road salt WILL eat the big box store epoxies after 6-7 years, and they get patchy around the 8-10 year mark. I have had three I did over the past 15 years all do the same, even with good prep. At the old shop, I used white line marking paint with a pint of black mixed in. It held up better than the epoxy for 14 years. Prep was the key.
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Re: Garage Floor Paint

Postby Tim The Grim » Mon May 27, 2019 12:13 pm

I Used a two part epoxy I got from Lowe’s.
This was back in 2000 and I did a 3 car garage in late spring.
I did an acid wash and then a TSP wash after that.
Non skid sand was added prior to application.
It lasted 8 yrs before some lifting but 19 years later it’s still better than nothing.

A word of caution... I believe the epoxy fumes knocked out my immune system really badly for a few months. I was at a great point in my life, very happy, working out, great job, two running bikes. I got so sick so often the next few months I have to attribute it to the fumes.
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Re: Garage Floor Paint

Postby jOe » Mon May 27, 2019 12:16 pm

Two painted garage floor experiences. Both professionally done,both not cheap.
The first was the epoxy with flakes. The upside was that it looked great and seemed to hold up pretty well, but then we lived there for only 3 1/2 years . The downside was it was difficult to clean. Mops hung up on the flakes and a squeegee didn’t work at all very well. The other negative was spotting small bits and hardware that fell on the floor. They seemed to blend in with the background and took time to find.
The second floor I had painted a solid tan, smooth epoxy. Initially it looked outstanding. But over time and projects, jack stands , dropped tools , oil, chemicals all started taking a toll on the work area. Small dings and gashes grow. Any liquid that gets in the scars will cause it to bubble and flake.
The garage I’m in now I kept bare concrete and laid the Harbor Freight Tools Anti Fatigue mats down. For $50 I can cover an 8’X16’ space. They’re washable and cheaply replaceable.
I live in rural area where road grit getting on the garage floor is a real problem. I don’t think a painted floor is a good option here. Another downside to a smooth floor paint is that it’s slippery when wet and snow is melting from the wheel wells around here.
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Re: Garage Floor Paint

Postby Ferrous_Head » Mon May 27, 2019 4:29 pm

One other tip.

If your driving your car into the workshop DON'T turn the wheels left or right while they are still warm/hot from use. Especially if you use the water based stuff.

I put clear over mine to stop problems with the flakes.

Where my main work bench is I have a rubber ,at.Better for standing on, better for not breaking things that fall, easier to find stuff that does fall (It's actually conveyor belting). NOTHING affects that rubber mat.

I hired a guy to do the floor grinding. He had the right equipment. Grinders with vac attachments. But the painting is easy enough to do yourself. And later when your mates ask, you can say "I did that" (I'm very happy with how mine looks)

I lived with bare concrete for years. But same could be said of my last wife. Neither was a smart idea. One was as cold and hard as concrete. The other on was too but shed concrete dust all the time.
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