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jaxops

GARAGE FLOOR COATING -Big Dog Garage

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I noticed on the last "My Classic Car" TV series that Jay Leno's garage floor was all chipped and mostly coming up in his working area. I had seen the episode a few years back when they applied the coating. I was wondering if a few years is all that you can expect with heavy use for epoxy floor coverings?

I realize that most of us don' have that much traffic and repair work in their garages, but the coating used was supposed to be a commercial use product. Just wondering out loud before I think about putting a floor paint/covering on.

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I have noticed the same thing. I would like to have the same finish as you would see at Home Depot, they see plenty of traffic & abuse and always look great.

It looks like polished concrete.

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Funny this comes up now as I have done TONS of research for my new detached garage floor.

Here's what I have found.

Epoxies. Technically, stronger than the concrete itself. Not UV stable and will yellow.

Polys. Stronger than epoxy in that they are UV stable. More expensive than epoxies.

When it comes to these kinds of "paints" it seems that the water based are not as strong as the solvent based versions. Either will allow you to put flecks in for a nice look, and if clear coated can shine like they are wet.

However, almost as many that say it is holding up well also say it peeled where tires were parked or that it came off like sunburned skin.

Prep is important too, and most of these products say to clean the floor with a muriatic acid solution to ensure good bonding. That being said...some professional installers say that it is the acid washing that causes the product to not adhere well to the cement. Apparently rinsing it all out is problematic.

Oh yes...cost. Any of the "quality" products can cost a small fortune. For my 32x26 I was quoted from $800 to $1200 for the products to do it myself. There are products at Home Depot and Lowes...even some paint stores....but I have not read stellar reviews on these.

So, what to do? My brother in law used a Behr cement stain on his older garage floor and all he did was wash with a Purple Power type cleaner and roll it on.

Now, this stain sounds good to me. It penetrates the surface like a wood stain penetrates wood. (It is a much thinner product so if you have rougher cement...it will stay that way. Some of the thicker (expensive) epoxies have some ability to fill...and the flecks hide the defects.)

Stain is available in solid colors (can be tinted at the store) or in transparent colors.

A transparent stained cement surface takes on an interesting look. You can find pics on line...but I'd say it reminds me of a leather texture. This costs about $25 a gallon.

I am going to do the stain in my garage.

Oh yes...back to the prep. The professionals I spoke to said that the key is to sand the floor...then clean it will and apply the product. My floor was not as smooth as we wanted it to be so the contractor made a few passes with big wheeled sanding machine. We'll blow it out a few times and be ready to go.

Hope this helps.

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Matt,

Staining seems like a great idea. If it wears down, just restain it like you do on the deck. I had used a clear cement sealer on a house I had in Massachusetts, and it was easy to use, and basically did the job.

I would hate to go through the effort to lay down a nice floor and then have it coming up. Definitely an alternative if you have a basic garage for parking and getting out of the weather!

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jaxops...my thinking exactly. I don't mind doing the work, or the expense really...if it gave me a great floor. But....to have it fail would really upset me.

I have read so many stories of epoxy floors having tire pick-up, peeling off, flaking....that I was concerned. I even had some e-mails with a very helpful pro epoxy type floor installer.

(I do realize it was many years ago...but our studio at the time had started as a gym and we wanted the floor to be a neutral gray to match the walls....as well as smooth enough to look good on videotape. We had a company come in and sand the entire floor, prep, epoxy...you name it. Cost a fortune. The first time we pulled our production van out it pulled the paint).

My brother in law does all sorts of work in his garage from painting to welding, mechanical and he says this cement stain is very tough.

Again, I'd be really annoyed if I spent a small fortune and then had a problem. Then you'd have to sand it all off....uh boy.

Once I get the stain done...I'll have to post an update. I picked up a color chart today.

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When I bought my current house 8 years ago I had the garage floor professionally coated before I moved in. I believe they used a Sherwin Williams product but I do not know if it was epoxy or polyurethane. I know they powerwashed the new concrete before applying and they had a hard time with the application because it was cold. I let it cure for a week before putting anything on it and it was probabaly at least a month before a car sat on it as we were moving in. Since then I have parked cars in Texas summer, rolled jacks, used jackstands, spilled every kind of solvent, and basically beat the snot out of it. It now has some surface scratches but it has never lifted or shown any damage that went all the way through - best money I ever spent. I will try to find the product name, maybe the key is new versus old concrete?

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I would like to find out what Home Depot uses, it always looks great. Granted they only have foot traffic & a few forklifts using the floor but it looks great.

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Check Leno's web site. This week, he posted a video commenting on the defective floor and recommends a plastic tile installation.

Phil

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I have some experience with the plastic floor tiles too. My attached garage has them made by SportCourt and while they look great...they're far from perfect.

The most reasonable price I could find was about $2.43 a square foot for the tiles I got.

They look great, and you need no real surface preparation as they sit on top.

Cons? They make a clicky sound when you walk on them, which I suppose could be muted with a rubber pad underneath. They also dent if you use a floor jack. (I got a big piece of aluminum to put under my jack)

When you install the tiles, you need to leave a gap around the edges as they will swell in the sun.

(I'd bet Jay Leno got a smokin' deal on them for doing the video)

Here's my tile floor.

DSC00070.jpg

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On my new floors in house garage and shop I use the Rustoleum floor product, The video provided was easy to follow for prep and painting and I had great results. Four years later the house garage used daily looks almost new. No tire pick up or peeling. Tan and gray were used and I left off the flecks where I work on cars to see all the stuff I drop. The product can be thinned with water for more coverage.

The shop floor looks great too. ez to clean up grease

dirt, I mop it and it looks new.

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I finally found the invoice for my garage floor coating, it was Sherwin Williams "Tile Clad" 2-part epoxy. Applied to new concrete 8 years ago and still in great shape.

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Sheldon,

When you used the concrete stain did you use the non-skid additive? What was your prep like? I'd appreciate it...thanx!

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Hi Jaxops

The Rustoleum has a video and the floor prep all included in the packaging. Basically new concrete must age appox 1 year, and hose floor and brush with the cleaner. Remove any grease spots

Roll on paint and dry in couple days.

I used the paint flecks for decoration. I did not put them on floor where I work on cars to make it easy to see all the parts I drop. The floor does not seem to be slick.

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The home I bought has a shop on it ( one of the reasons i bought it, haha, anyway, the floor in the shop sweats bad. It gets wet and slipery in the winter cold nights warmer days. Summer is no problem. Since I don't keep the shop heated, due to cost and my job, ( I buy the parts during winter, work on the cars in late spring summer, early fall. ) I have been wondering what would work good for the floor. Painting it won't stop the floor from seating.

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The best solution is to get a small dehumidifer that is what I do.

We put heavy plastic under the cement and lots of gravel and still sweats on right conditions.

The dehumidifer is only about $100 and does a 30x40 steel building very well.

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<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Originally Posted By: Sheldon Rody</div><div class="ubbcode-body">Hi Jaxops

The Rustoleum has a video and the floor prep all included in the packaging. Basically new concrete must age appox 1 year, and hose floor and brush with the cleaner. Remove any grease spots

Roll on paint and dry in couple days.

I used the paint flecks for decoration. I did not put them on floor where I work on cars to make it easy to see all the parts I drop. The floor does not seem to be slick.</div></div>

Thanx Sheldon!

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I pick up used carpet from my local carpet store, usually free, some times $10.00. I can score enough to do a 24x24. Nice to keep the car on, and also great to lay on for under work. When it gets dirty, I change it out for a new color. Always a lot of used carpet avialable. The cars like it too. Doug

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Here's an update guys. I don't have pictures on this computer, but I went with the Behr Solid Color Cement Stain. I had it tinted a light grey, and sprinkled a slight amount of the flakes in the final coat.

My garage is 832 sq. ft and I used exactly 4 gallons. At $23 each, it was very reasonable.

The floor was a new slab, and it was ground down as it had some irregularities due to it being rained on and covered with plastic just after the pour. The floor was covered in plastic since it was ground, and we did a very thorough vacuuming.

We applied one coat of Behr adhesion promoter, then two coats of the stain 8 hours apart. On the first coat, you could see the stain sinking into the cement..much like wood stain does into wood. Two coats were needed, and I even contemplated a third. I wanted to ensure it was bonding well to the cement not the previous coat, so I stopped at two.

My truck parked on this for two weeks and did not lift the stain.

The cons?

Had I put down more flecks, it may have hidden more imperfections, but the fact that it is a flat finish helps. (A clear top coat is available.)

The pros?

Cheap. $23 a gallon.

Seems durable. Have already mopped with Simple Green, dropped tools, etc and seems to stand up well. Even to hot tire pick up.

Easy touch-up. If you get a wear area, you can just touch it up and you're done. No need to do the whole floor.

In the end, it stands to reason that this should be tougher than a coating as it permeates the surface. I liked the look of the coatings, but it just wasn't in the budget.

This floor has gotten compliments, which is nice.

Before I did the floor, I took all the gallons of stain...mixed them into one big bucket...then put them back into the gallon cans to ensure a consistent color. I kept an extra gallon (that was mixed with the others) for later touch-up.

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I believe the process Home Depot uses on their concrete floors is a sanding/polishing procedure called Retroplating.

They basically sand and polish the concrete with a series of higher and higher grits.

It's a very dusty and messy procedure, but gives a nice polished look and is permanent.

It might look even better if you were to use a color enhancer in the concrete when poured, as the retroplating brings out the slight differences in the color of the original concrete.

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I had my shop floor stained before I started moving stuff in. Stained, two coats of Urethane and a coat of water base wax.

My builder went under before the house was done so I didn't get to have the floor ground to make it smoother but it's pretty good. It holds up to steel wheels from engine stands and hoists and cleans with hot water and soap real good. Just add more wax.

Marc

post-70446-143138355798_thumb.jpg

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I had my shop floor stained before I started moving stuff in. Stained, two coats of Urethane and a coat of water base wax.

My builder went under before the house was done so I didn't get to have the floor ground to make it smoother but it's pretty good. It holds up to steel wheels from engine stands and hoists and cleans with hot water and soap real good. Just add more wax.

Marc

If you don't mind me asking -- is that a connecting rod boring machine in the background? What kind of machine work are you doing there?

p.s.: nice floor!

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Thanks on the floor. It does look good and holds up. I need to scrub again especially where I pour babbitt. maybe next week. The vertical one on the left is a Vulcan Rod machine and the one on the right is a Simplicity or one of the other names they were sold under. I use the Vulcan for big rods and will be using the Simplicity for A & T Rods. I use the K-W LBM, board hanging on the wall, for most main and cam bearing boring. I have a TA-14 I just finished overhauling and used on a 1904 CD Olds block.

On the floor are T Blocks with A crank caps I'm building for stock or I might put one in my speedster.

I am retiring in March and will get to spend more time on engines and the A, T, and two Mustangs. Maybe buy a Hupp in a year or two and sell the T Speedster.

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I once worked for a contractor that applied floor coatings.

Urethanes, epoxies, solvent & water based.

We first would clean the floor several times over using a citrus based solvent and a floor scrubber.

Step 2 was to etch the floor with muriatic acid to open up the pores of the concrete and remove any cure & seal the contractor may have Applied.

Then, let it dry with fans blowing across it for 24 hours before applying the coating.

We did some nasty floors that came out great and held up with time.

We did many sections of the old Graco factory here. Some sections of the machine shop building were 80 years old and were exposed to as many years of oil, grease, cutting fluid an lord knows what else.

Like anything else, it's all in the prep.

I've always been a bit skeptical of these DIY kits I've seen.

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