How to Paint a Commercial Tile Floor

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Painting your tile floor can give it a whole new look.
Painting your tile floor can give it a whole new look. (Image: Tiled floor image by Simon Amberly from Fotolia.com)

Over the course of time, tile can begin to get worn out in its appearance. Whether it's a buildup of dirt and grime, or cracks or broken tiles, the tile will lose the glean look that it once had, and this can be especially unappealing if it's in your business. You could replace all the tile, but that can be very expensive; if you're on a tight budget, you might want to consider painting your tile floor. A fresh coat of paint can give your tile a whole new look, for a lower price tag than replacing the whole floor.

Things You'll Need

  • Replacement tiles
  • Grout
  • Dropcloth or tarp
  • Tile cleaner
  • Brush
  • Rubber gloves
  • Water
  • Bleach or hydrogen peroxide
  • 220-grit sandpaper
  • Orbital sander
  • Vacuum cleaner
  • Tack cloth
  • Painter's tape
  • Oil-based primer
  • Roller
  • Semi-gloss paint

Replace any tiles that are cracked or damaged. Add grout to any spaces between the tiles that might need it. Allow the grout to set for a week before painting.

Cover any wood surfaces near the floor with a dropcloth or tarp.

Use a tile cleaner or other substance that will remove grease, oil and dirt from the tile. Rinse it off thoroughly with water.

Scrub any mold or mildew off with a solution containing bleach or hydrogen peroxide.

Sand the surface of the tiles with 220-grit sandpaper. You could do this by hand, but with a commercial floor, it'd be a lot easier and quicker with an orbital sander.

Clean the tile with a vacuum and tack cloth, to remove all the grit (any grit left behind will be visible in the paint).

Cover any objects or walls that come in contact with the tile with painter's tape.

Use a roller to paint the tile with two coats of an oil-based primer and let it dry.

Sand the area after the second coat dries. Clean the grit from the tile like you did in Step 6.

Paint the floor with an oil-based semi-gloss or high-gloss paint. Apply a thin coat and allow it to dry. If needed, add a second or even a third coat if necessary to get the color that you want.

Use the painter's tape to mask the edges of the tile so that you can paint the grout.

Paint the grout with a thin coat, applying a second or third coat if necessary.

Allow the paint to dry and remove the tape.

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