How to Epoxy Concrete

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Applying epoxy paint makes cleaning easier and adds a professional-looking finish to any concrete floor. However, you don't need to hire a professional to do it. Most epoxy kits come with everything necessary to do the job. The epoxy will resist grease and oil stains, make water bead, and allow you to easily wipe up any mess. Choosing the right time to paint is crucial for a successful application. When you paint the epoxy, choose a time when the concrete is not moist from a rainy day and the weather is between 50 to 80 degrees. Otherwise the epoxy could peel or bubble.

Things You'll Need

  • Broom
  • Mop
  • Water
  • Dish soap
  • Stiff-bristle brush
  • Degreaser
  • Painters tape
  • Plastic sheeting
  • Epoxy paint kit
  • Plastic watering can
  • Bristle broom
  • Wooden paint mixing stick
  • Paint tray with a liner
  • 3-inch paintbrush
  • Paint roller with an extension handle
  • Rubber boots
  • Rubber gloves
  • Protective clothing
  • Choose the epoxy kit that fits your needs. Most come with enough etching mixture and epoxy paint for one coat and a top coat. If you want to add a second coat, you will need to purchase additional paint and hardener. The kits and paint are available at any hardware store or online.

  • Clean the concrete floor. The epoxy will not adhere to concrete covered with dirt and grease. Sweep up all dirt and debris, and mop the floor with a mixture of dish soap and water. Use a degreaser to scrub away grease stains with a stiff-bristle brush. You can purchase a degreaser at any hardware store. Let the floor dry completely.

  • Tape plastic sheeting to the walls and along the edges of the floor to protect any surfaces you do not want to epoxy.

  • Pour water in a plastic watering can. Add the etching solution to the water. Read the manufacturer's instructions for the correct amounts of water and solution. Be sure to wear protective clothing, rubber boots and gloves while working with any chemicals.

  • Hose down the entire floor with a garden hose. Starting at the farthest corner from the exit, apply the etching solution over a 10-foot-by-10-foot area.

  • Scrub the solution in one direction with a bristle broom. Then scrub the solution again in a direction that is perpendicular to the first. Continue applying and scrubbing the solution in each 10-by-10-foot section until you have etched the entire floor.

  • Rinse the solution from the floor with a garden hose. Continue hosing down the floor until the rinse water is clear. Let the floor dry completely.

  • Stir the epoxy paint with a wooden paint-mixing stick. Slowly add the epoxy hardener while you stir. Use the mixing stick to get all the hardener into the epoxy mix. Stir for about five minutes and set the can aside for 30 minutes to allow the chemicals to react with each other. Do not place the can in the sun. For the epoxy mix to cure properly, use it within two hours of mixing. If you are applying a second coat, wait until it is time to paint the second coat to mix the paint and hardener.

  • Pour the paint into a paint tray with a liner. With a 3-inch paintbrush, paint along the edges and seams of the floor. Keep your working area well ventilated.

  • Paint the rest of the floor with a paint roller on an extension handle. Start at the back corner and work your way out of the area you are painting. If you are applying a second coat, let the first coat dry completely.

  • Repeat Steps 8 through 10 to apply the second coat.

  • Repeat Step 8 to mix the top coat sealer and the hardener. About one minute before painting the top coat, stir the mix again. If you are using anti-skid granules, stir them in at this time.

  • Repeat Steps 9 and 10 to paint the top coat. Although it appears white while it is wet, it will dry clear.

Tips & Warnings

  • If your concrete is painted, rent a floor maintainer. Use a light sanding pad and run it over the painted surface to scuff it up before Step 2.
  • To add color flakes, sprinkle them onto the wet epoxy paint one section at a time.
  • Once the job is done, give the floor at least 72 hours to dry before parking your car on it.

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References

  • Photo Credit concrete image by Empath from Fotolia.com
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