How to Make a Cheap Pebble Floor

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Chattahoochee floors, also known as pebble floors, look really great and can be done inexpensively with advanced DIY skills. Collect your own stones and pebbles for a walk though memory lane while going through your own house. Pebble floors have smooth stones or small pebbles suspended in resin over a concrete base using a two-part epoxy. Resin is the result of mixing two liquid epoxy chemicals together. When the liquid mix dries, it forms a hard, clear bond with the stones. Vary patterns, pebble sizes and colors to create a wonderful floor finish with durable and lasting results.

Smooth Pebble Floor
(pebbles image by Edsweb from Fotolia.com)

Things You'll Need

  • Floor scraper
  • Power washer
  • Wheelbarrow
  • Cement Mixer
  • Rake
  • Broom
  • Gloves
  • Clean Rags
  • Concrete finishing trowel
  • Shovel
  • Pebbles
  • Resin
  • Resin cure liquid
  • Resin solvent
Step 1

Remove all of the existing carpeting, vinyl and wood flooring in the area to be pebbled. Scrape the slab until the surface is smooth and all glue or other debris is removed. Clean floor with broom and vacuum. Fill carpet tack holes and small dents with quick set concrete repair paste. Slab cracks will transmit through the epoxy.

Clean And Dry Concrete Slabs Are The Best Surface For Pebble Floors
concrete image by Empath from Fotolia.com
Step 2

Lay pebble floors only over concrete slabs. Epoxy finishes create a complete moisture barrier to the slab. Damp slabs will continue to wick moisture and the epoxy will bubble and chip off. Do not use epoxy finishes on damp slabs.

Do Not Use Epoxy Over A Damp Slab
particles of a mud image by Michael Avdeenko from Fotolia.com
Step 3

Check the slab for moisture before starting any preparation work. Make sure that the floor is dry. Tape an 18 inch by 18 inch piece of heavy, clear plastic over a section of the slab using blue painters tape. Leave the plastic in place for two days. Moisture condensates on the plastic if the slab is still drying or if the atmosphere is too damp for an epoxy finish floor. Moisture free slabs are best for epoxy finishes.

Check For Moisture On The Slab
pluie image by Ingrid from Fotolia.com
Step 4

Power-wash the slab with water and tri-sodium phosphate with a rented high pressure washer. High pressure washers remove grease and grime by increasing the water pressure going through a special hose and nozzle. Pressure washers rated between 2000 and 3000 PSI. or pounds per square inch, are best for concrete cleaning.

Rinse with clear water until all soap residue is removed. Allow the slab to dry.

Power Wash Equipment
sand-wash image by sasha from Fotolia.com
Step 5

Wash pebbles or stones with a mixture of water and tri-sodium phosphate and rinse completely. Tumble rough surface stones in cement mixer with a bucket of sand to smooth edges. Sharp edge stones will not work for flooring surfaces and should never be used.

Wash The Stones and Pebbles Before Using
Concrete mixer image by zalisa from Fotolia.com
Step 6

Follow the epoxy manufacturer’s instructions completely. Mix the two-part epoxy with the pebbles in a portable cement mixer. Transport the pebble mixture to the job site in a wheelbarrow in batches. Spread the mixture onto the slab using a shovel, rake and a broom. Use a steel trowel to smooth and level the mixture to 3/8 inch to ½ inch thickness. Use a solvent soaked rag to wipe the trowel after each pass.

Spread The Pebble and Epoxy Mixture
cement ,concrete ,shoes image by Greg Pickens from Fotolia.com
Step 7

Keep a four-foot level handy to check that the floor is lying flat and even. Make the batches of pebble mixture small enough to use within one hour of mixing.

Work and Level One Section At A Time
cement,concrete image by Greg Pickens from Fotolia.com
Step 8

Wash all equipment with solvent after use. Epoxy will set up on the tools quickly and is almost impossible to remove.

Epoxy, Resin And Solvants Are Toxic. Use Caution.
Toxic hazard flag image by Stasys Eidiejus from Fotolia.com
Step 9

Keep pets and children off the floor until the resin is completely dry. Allow the floor to dry for four days before anyone or anything walks on it. Another two weeks of curing is necessary for a floor ready to accept furniture and traffic.

Keep Everybody And Everything Off The Floor For Four Days.
dog image by Ramona smiers from Fotolia.com
Step 10

Wash pebble floors wash with soap and water. Pebble floors resist most stains but may discolor over time. Wash often to remove dust and mud from the irregular surface.

Clean Pebble Floors With Soap and Water
cleaning brushes for sweeping the floor image by L. Shat from Fotolia.com

References

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