The concrete floors in your garage or basement can be finished to create additional living space in your home, for very little money. Concrete floors may require a bit of prep work before they are able to be finished properly, but the money that is saved makes it worth the extra effort.
Planning and Preparation
The planning and preparation is the most important aspect of any do-it-yourself project. Painting concrete floors allows for creativity and is an inexpensive way to turn drab concrete into a colorful attractive floor. Carpet is a simple method for covering a concrete floor; it is not expensive when you lay the carpet yourself. Finally, epoxy kits provide a simple and low-cost way to finish concrete garage or basement floors.
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Concrete floors in basements or garages may have moisture problems. Before all the hard work is ruined, cover a section of the floor with plastic and tape it in place. Leave the floor covered for twenty-four hours and then remove the plastic. If there is moisture under the plastic, you have a moisture problem that you will have to address before prepping the floor for paint or carpet. Determine where the moisture is coming from, and divert the moisture from entering the basement or garage. Check the gutters and drain spouts to keep rainwater from entering the home.
Cleaning the concrete floor thoroughly is a necessary preparation that allows paint to properly adhere.
When painting a concrete floor, be sure to use paint designed for concrete floors. Using lower quality paint will result in poor adhesion. Use tape to create the design of your choice on the concrete floor. Paint can be applied with a roller or brushes. Allow the floor to dry before adding a second coat of paint.
For carpeting over concrete, use a carpet pad to protect the carpet and make the floor a little softer. A carpeted floor works well in a basement that you have converted into a playroom for the kids.
Epoxy kits come with different parts that must be mixed together before they are applied to the floor. Apply only the amount that you will need to cover your concrete floor. The epoxy kit will specify an amount of time that the epoxy must sit after mixing before it is applied. You must also apply the coating to the floor in the time specified in the instructions. Epoxy is applied to the floor in the same way as paint. Use a roller or a brush to apply the coating to the floor. Wait for the floor to dry completely before adding a second coat.
Allow the painted floor to dry thoroughly and add a sealer to protect the paint. Apply the sealer in multiple coats to ensure that the painted floor is durable. A sealed floor can hold up for many years if the sealing is done properly.
Epoxy-coated floors may require a full month before they are fully cured. The amount of time will largely depend on what the room will be used for. Expect to wait a longer time before parking cars on epoxy-coated concrete floors.