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Thread: Painting concrete shop floor

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2007

    Painting concrete shop floor

    Hay Folks,
    Well the priming OSB topic had helpful answers so I thought I would try it again.

    I am thinking of painting the concrete floor in m shop. I have looked a little into Waterborne Epoxy but it seems somewhat complicated. I am thinking masonry paint with a bit of gloss on it may be a better solution.
    If anyone has painted their concrete floor I would be interested to hear what you used and how it went and how it has held up.

  2. #2
    First step: Tape a piece of foil or polyethylene down to the floor, sealed on all edges, and leave it for a few days. Pull it up and look for any moisture on the side that was down to the floor. If there's moisture you will have trouble getting paint to last.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Thanks Paul I will give this a try. I do not think I have the moisture problem though.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2019
    Averill Park NY
    Quote Originally Posted by Izzy Camire View Post
    Thanks Paul I will give this a try. I do not think I have the moisture problem though.
    you would be surprised how many people told me that, when I was a epoxy flooring contractor. The secret to getting anything to adhere well to concrete is surface prep. Make sure it is thoroughly cleaned before applying paint. If you wash the floor give it a couple of weeks to dry out. Several people paid me a lot of money to fix their mistakes. If you go the epoxy route you need to mechanically etch the floor. Before applying epoxy. Please don’t use the crap the big box stores sell. If you have an Elite Crete dealer in your area. Go take their seminar so you can buy their product. Feel free to ask any questions.
    Some Blue Tools
    Some Yellow Tools
    And a Pet Grizzly
    Blue and White 50 Watt

  5. #5
    I've done the Rustoleum Epoxyshield kit for my basement floor. I used 6 kits, putting down two coats of solid, and a coat of clear. This was about 4-5 years ago, I have not noticed any problems, other than one small area I screwed up almost immediately when moving a freezer. I did not etch the concrete, though I did go over most of it with a angle grinder to remove a variety of nasty adhesives and the like. I also do not park cars on it, and it's mostly light foot traffic.

    That having been said, you might want to go with the pros on this one. Two issues with DIY.

    First, the Rustoleum kits sold in the big box stores has about 50% epoxy solids, 50% water. The professional installers use much closer to 100% epoxy and no water. Rustoleum adds the water because it makes the epoxy easier to work with, and slows down curing. However it means that the kits don't have the same thickness of coverage, which is why I did 3 coats. I do not believe there is a DIY kit that is the same consistency as the pro kits. I could be wrong, there might have been some introduced since I did mine.

    Second, the epoxy sets up very quickly, unlike paint. If you watch videos of the pros doing it, they are lightning fast, and use really big squeegees. Like olympic curlers or something. In my case I had a friend helping, with one of us cutting in around the edge, and the other doing the large areas. The Rustoluem kit I used setup in about an hour, I believe the pro mixes setup in about 15-30 minutes. It might sound like a lot of time for painting, but it's really not, particularly over a large area. One thing I did which helped was do everything possible for pre-work before I mixed the epoxy.

  6. #6
    I painted a small low traffic area of my basement with one of the DIY kits. It has held up 8 years now, looks good.

    An alternative to paint might be vinyl tiles. I did my shop with these and it came out nice: Clean, durable, colors/patterns, reasonably cheap. Less harsh on chisels/etc if they get dropped. The one downside is once waxed they are slick. Epoxy over concrete isnt as bad because some surface texture still.

    You will love being able to sweep the floor.

  7. #7
    I used the Rustoleum product in the basement shop in my last house and it held up great. I did do all the prep including pressure washing and etching the floor. Like Andrew said you have to work quick because it will start setting before you know it.

  8. I used the Rustoleum 2-part waterborne expoxy. The kit is specifically for basement floors, or other concrete surfaces that will not have cars driven onto it. The instructions specifically say not to do an acid etch, but use a cleaner/degreaser. I did mine about 6 months after the slab had been poured. Even though there was no evidence of moisture after taping down a piece of clear plastic, I let a dehumidifier run before and after washing the slab. As I was concerned about the floor being slick when there was sawdust on it, I added a fine texturing compound as I was mixing the two parts. The edges were done with a brush and the rest with a roller. Colored flakes were thrown in the air (to get a relatively even spread) once there was epoxy on a 6 x 6 area (approximately). After one year the coating is completely intact and really doesn't show any evidence of wear. I'm very satisfied with the results thus far.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2016
    Modesto, CA, USA
    One theory is to just use regular latex paint. Easy prep and easy touch up every few years. As long as no car or lift traffic it will stand up to light foot traffic.
    Bill D

  10. An alternative: etch the concrete with acid and pigments then put a clear sealant over it.

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