After building a garage in your home, it is important you think about coating the garage floor with either paint or epoxy. The latter will give you the best results. After all, epoxy coating is resistant to abrasion, staining and chemicals. The coating also seals the concrete properly, so you will not have to worry about water damage in the garage. To get the best outcome possible, it is recommended you hire a professional to install the epoxy floor coating.
Epoxy Paint Vs Epoxy Coating
Property owners can choose either standard acrylic paint or epoxy floor coating. Many manufacturers usually add a small amount of epoxy to acrylic paint and call it epoxy paint. This gives the acrylic paint greater durability and adhesion. However, this type of paint differs greatly to epoxy coating.
Epoxy Coating Explained
Epoxy floor coating is a product that has two main components; epoxy resin and polyamine hardener in equal parts. Before application to the concrete floor, the two must be mixed together. When the two chemicals are mixed, a chemical reaction is initiated. The temperature in the garage will determine how long you have to apply the epoxy coating before it hardens. It is important to note that there are also colored epoxy coatings. It is usually the resin that has a tint, and not the hardener. Therefore, if you want to have a colored garage floor, be sure to choose epoxy resin with the right tint.
How to Prepare My Cement Floor for Epoxy Coating
Proper preparation of concrete surfaces is the key to having a durable or long-lasting epoxy floor. There are many ways to prepare a concrete floor, including :
1. Sand Blasting
With this method, fine particles of sand, copper nuts or steel grits are propelled at high velocity onto the concrete floor to prepare it for the epoxy coating. Special sand blasting equipment is often used to propel the sand particles or steel grits. Shot blasting is a wonderful alternative to sand blasting.
One of the best ways of preparing concrete floor for application of epoxy coating is grinding. This method is perfect for removing existing coating on a concrete surface and cleaning it in preparation for the epoxy coating. Usually, a grinder with a diamond grinding disk is used to prepare the surface for application of the epoxy coating. However, there are many other types of abrasive grinder disks that can be used for this purpose. Whichever surface preparation method is used, it is crucial you put on a face mask to ensure you do not breath in contaminated air.
3. Chemical Etching
This is one of the most effective surface preparation techniques available on the market. It entails the use of corrosive acids to prepare the concrete surface for the epoxy coating. The three most commonly used acids are; phosphoric acid, muriatic acid and sulfamic acid.
How Chemical Etching is Done ?
– Surface Cleaning:
The first thing you need to do is sweep or vacuum the concrete floor to remove dust and other impurities. After that, you need to wash the floor with liquid detergent or floor. Be sure to thoroughly clean areas that have water beads because they probably have oil or grease stains on them.
– Prepare Acid Solution:
If you choose to use muriatic acid, be sure to mix 10-15% muriatic acid with water. 1 gallon of the mixture can clean up to 50 square feet of space. In case you prefer phosphoric, use 20-40% solution. Sulfamic acid is the last option. The chemical comes in powder form. One pound of the powder should be mixed with one gallon, and this can clean 300 square feet of space. You can use an acid pump to apply the solution or just pour it from a can. Let the acid sit for around 10 minutes.
The next step is to rinse the floor and dry the surface. You can mop up excess water and vacuum the surface once more. After that, you can apply the epoxy coating.