How to Level Low Spots in a Garage Floor

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There are a number of ways to level a garage floor. You may float a new layer of concrete over the surface, fill depressions with cement, or patch the floor with an epoxy-based concrete patching compound. Although epoxy-based formulations are unlikely to match the color of the surrounding floor exactly, they are extremely durable and stronger than the original floor. In addition, epoxy resins are easy to work with and do not shrink or crack during the drying process.

Things You'll Need

  • Grease-cutting detergent
  • Stiff-bristle scrub brush
  • Rotary wire brush
  • Electric drill
  • Angle grinder
  • Cold-chisel and hammer (optional)
  • Vacuum cleaner
  • Rubber gloves
  • Protective eye gear
  • 2-part epoxy-based concrete patching compound
  • Steel trowel
  • Steel straightedge
  • Scrub all the low areas clean with a grease-cutting detergent, fairly hot water and a stiff-bristle scrub brush. Thoroughly rinse the areas and allow enough time for the floor to dry.

  • Roughen the insides of the depression by scouring the surface with a rotary wire brush fitted into an electric drill.

  • Cut a 1/16-inch-deep shoulder into the concrete around the perimeter of the low spot with an angle grinder. If you do not have access to an angle grinder, cut the shoulder with a cold-chisel and hammer. This strengthens the patch and acts as a key to bond the epoxy to the edges of the depression.

  • Remove loose material and dust from the area with a vacuum cleaner.

  • Mix enough 2-part epoxy-based concrete patching compound to fill each depression in turn. Follow the written instructions and mix the resin with the hardener in the exact proportions required.

  • Fill the depression with the epoxy mix, using a steel trowel. Once the depression is full and fairly level, sprinkle a few drops of water onto the surface.

  • Place the edge of a steel straightedge across the top of the repair with the ends on the finished floor. Slide the straightedge across the repair while moving it from side-to-side in a zigzag motion. This removes excess epoxy and highlights low spots. Add more filler where necessary, and repeat until the surface is level.

  • Allow enough time for the epoxy to stiffen somewhat. Smooth the surface down with the face of the trowel. Keep the trowel wet by frequently dipping it into water during the finishing process; do not add enough water to work the surface epoxy into a slurry.

  • Allow sufficient time for the epoxy to cure as directed in the instructions.

Tips & Warnings

  • Keep the garage well-ventilated during the floor leveling process.
  • Wear rubber gloves and eye protection while applying epoxy based concrete patching compound.
  • Wash the trowel and steel straightedge in water immediately after use; the epoxy is almost impossible to remove once it has cured.
  • Some manufacturers recommend feathering out the edges of an epoxy patch level with the surrounding floor. If this is the case, skip the process of cutting a shoulder around the perimeter of the depression.

References

  • Photo Credit Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images
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