If you need a high-performance g surface that is smooth, durable, and can withstand heavy loads, epoxy floor coatings are the best. Designed for commercial and industrial markets, epoxy flooring will provide the solution you need for your concrete floor. Epoxy garage floor installers will take care of cracks and imperfections before sealing and coating your floor.
When applied by a professional garage flooring contractor, an epoxy coating will protect your floor for many years.
Step-by-Step Epoxy Floor Installation
Professional epoxy installers have nailed the most effective ways of installing epoxy flooring, using the best available products. Here’s a breakdown of how they do it.
Step 1 – Prepping the Concrete
For an epoxy floor installation to be successful, preparing the concrete sufficiently is vital. Roughen the surface up by using a diamond grinding process that cleans and profiles the concrete. It is a dust-free process, as the equipment attaches to a vacuum that sucks up the dust as it’s created.
Some contractors prefer to use acid etching or high-pressure cleaning with water. These prepping methods don’t prevent the epoxy from developing imperfections, peeling, chipping, or flaking.
Grinding the floor reduces moisture and speeds up the installation process by allowing the epoxy to seep into the concrete slab. It also ensures that the epoxy and concrete form the necessary structural and chemical bonds that will guarantee a long floor life.
The contractor will patch holes, fix any cracks or imperfections with epoxy patching material. There are very few holes and cracks that are beyond repair.
Step 2 – Primer Application
Primer is vital for a successful epoxy flooring application, particularly in areas of high traffic. Grinding should create a surface on the floor that has the proper finish for the primer to adhere to. The surface must be spotlessly clean, with no oil, dirt, or dust. A bare concrete cleaning solution will take care of any residue that could prevent the primer from adhering successfully.
Apply primer to the surface in thin coats, either using a roller or a spray. The contractor will take care to avoid over-coating, which can cause puddling.
The primer coat soaks into the concrete and creates a foundation for the next epoxy layer. Low viscosity epoxy of industrial-grade gives maximum penetration and concrete slab bonding.
The primer needs to dry for at least two hours before the next step—factor in high humidity that will increase drying time.
Step 3 Epoxy Paint Application
Once the primer is dry, the contractor inspects the surface and removes any debris or dirt. Then he’ll stir the high solids, high build epoxy paint, and begin applying multiple coats. Apply each coat thinly and evenly to avoid a lumpy finish. This coat is thicker than the primer.
The primer and epoxy paint create the right floor color. The number of coats affects design preference, though two to three coats are recommended for most floors.
Step 4 – The Flecked Look
To mimic the flecked look of a granite floor, add decorative flakes and chips by hand. Apart from design appeal, these also make the floor less slippery by providing traction. The flakes also aid with durability and add style and color to your garage floor.
The contractor wears the right shoes while adding the flecks. After adding the flecks, allow a further 6 – 10 hours for drying. Sweep away, or vacuum up any extra flecks once dry.
Step 5 – Epoxy Sealant for Protection
To finish off, brush a clear coat of sealant on. A sealer adds a durable finish that lengthens the life of the floor. Blend the sealer properly. Apply the sealer and leave the floor to cure for 24 – 36 hours. Avoid foot- and vehicle traffic completely.
Why Hire a Professional Epoxy Floor Contractor?
DIY these days is as easy as watching a video online, right? Not always. Knowing the steps to complete a task isn’t always enough, especially when it comes to a home improvement that should last the next twenty years.
Here are four reasons to hire a professional flooring contractor to get the job done.
1. A Professional Will Assess and Handle Your Flooring Correctly
An epoxy flooring professional will assess what needs to be removed from your garage floors, such as paints, sealants, coatings, and dirt before beginning the process.
All repairs and cracks will be properly treated to ensure a completely level surface across the entire floor.
Professionals have the right tools, experience, and know-how to open concrete pores to just the right depth. This is a vital step to ensure the primer soaks in properly.
2. A Professional Will Help You Avoid Making Costly Mistakes
A professional has the right tools to measure the moisture content and do moisture removal from your concrete slab before the epoxy solution is poured. Incorrect moisture levels will not only make your DIY kit fail as a floor sealant but will make it hard to remove. A contractor will do the job right and help you avoid messy, time-consuming, expensive do-overs.
3. Contractors Use Professional Products and Tools
DIY kits are widely available, which creates the illusion that they are the best product for the job. This isn’t always the case, as DIY kits contain over 50% water. This creates a thin, brittle coat on your floor while also lengthening drying time.
Professional epoxy garage floor installers use industry-grade kits. They are suitable for commercial and industrial use, promising a better result and lifespan.
DIY’ers seldom have all the right tools for the job. Professionals have an entire arsenal of tools available to do the job well.
4. Hard Labor
Applying an epoxy floor covering is a labor-intensive job that requires strength and stamina. Professional installers use teams, which eases the workload, instead of being a one-person job.
Common Mistakes Found In DIY Epoxy Flooring
Avoiding a professional’s service fee can lead to some expensive fixes. DIY’ers tend to make the following mistakes.
Short Cuts In The Floor Preparation Process
For epoxy to attach to the concrete surface of your garage floor, the floor will need to be a spotless surface. The top layer of concrete has to be removed to create the right surface that the epoxy floor sealant will attach to.
DIY’ers don’t always get the floor properly clean or the right degree of scoring on the concrete. Both these issues will lead to adhesion problems.
Badly Mixed Epoxy
An epoxy mixture needs even mixing for it to harden correctly across the entire floor. DIY’ers aren’t always able to get this mix done right. This leads to adhesion problems and expensive fixes.
Concrete Moisture Levels That Are Too High
This is common when an epoxy floor is thrown on new concrete that hasn’t had time to dry sufficiently. Damp concrete will cause bubbles and cracks in the epoxy coat.
FAQs – All About Epoxy Flooring
These are some of the most frequently asked questions that clients ask when finding out about the benefits of epoxy floor covering and the process of applying it.
Q: What about the huge crack in my garage floor? Does this mean I can’t get epoxy flooring?
Most holes, gouges, and cracks can be repaired with epoxy patching material. Your professional contractor will have a look at your crack before starting and make the call.
Q: Is it hard to keep my epoxy garage floor clean?
One of the most attractive features of an epoxy floor is how low maintenance it is! Blow loose debris off with an electric leaf blower. For mud or oil stains, a regular green cleaner and water will do the trick.
Q: What is the lifespan of an epoxy floor coating?
Factors that influence an epoxy floor coating lifespan are how much the floor is used and correct installation. In a residential garage, epoxy flooring should last at least 20 years. This is part of what makes it a top choice for garage flooring.
Q: From start to finish, how long will the installation process take?
While each project comes with its challenges and variables, typically, you should set aside two days of being garage-less.
Q: Does a brand new concrete floor still need to have the surface ground?
Yes! Concrete has a layer of brittle concrete that dries on the surface. That’s called the laitance layer. Break this layer up so that the epoxy primer and coating can sink in and be properly absorbed. Grinding also cleans the surface, which is good for bonding.
Where To Hire Professional Epoxy Garage Floor Installers?
An epoxy garage floor covering is an asset that adds value to your home when done right. It will save you cleaning time, it looks good, and is hard-wearing.
If you’re looking for epoxy garage floor installers who use the best products and offer exceptional quality, request a free estimate today!
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