Practical considerations for floor painting
Painting the floor of a garage, basement or other room is a worthwhile home improvement project that protects and beautifies the floor. The coat of paint keeps the floor free of stains and gives it a brand-new look. However, finding the right concrete floor paint is important to creating the proper finish.
Types of Floor Paint
Selecting the right paint for your project takes a bit of time and research. There are many types of concrete floor paint available; in general, though, a water-based paint will produce results that are inferior to a solvent-based paint.
For a garage floor where vehicles will be parked, select only epoxy floor paint, as it will withstand the heat generated by the vehicle's tires. Epoxy paints are also thicker than ordinary oil-based or latex paints, so it will usually only take one coat of epoxy paint for the same coverage that would take two or three coats of the latter types.
Epoxy paint is the perfect garage floor paint, but it makes for good basement floor paint, too. For a more decorative finish in the basement, colored paint chips or sand can be added to the epoxy paint. This can help tie in the wall color or other design elements of the room, lending it a more comfortable, put-together feel.
Preparing the Floor for Painting
The first step in preparing the floor to be painted is to thoroughly clean it. All dirt, dust and debris must be removed, or else the painted surface may be bumpy or the paint may not adhere properly. Scrub the floor with a stiff brush, and then rinse it well with clean water.
After the floor is completely dry, repair small cracks in the concrete with a concrete-repair or mortar-repair compound. If there are large cracks present, use concrete patch to fix them.
The floor may also need to be etched to allow the new paint to permeate and properly adhere to it. To check if the floor needs to be etched, sprinkle a few drops of water on the cleaned floor and observe. If the water is rapidly absorbed into the concrete, no etching is required. If not, apply a commercial etching compound, carefully following the manufacturer's instructions.
The last step before actually painting the floor is to apply a coat of primer. Mix the primer well and lay down a thin, even coat. Allow it to dry completely before applying the paint.
Apply the concrete floor paint according to the manufacturer's instructions. Let the paint dry thoroughly before determining whether a second coat is required.
A painted floor can be the perfect finishing touch to a garage or basement, and floor painting makes a quick, easy do-it-yourself home renovation project.