How Tos / Tech

Paint and Park: Bringing a Floor Back from the Dead with Rust-Oleum Epoxy Shield Garage Floor Coating

 

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Up until recently, our at-home car projects have been at the mercy of Mother Nature. Tired of working in dirt and snow, the decision was made to search for new digs and a garage to go along with them. We found the ideal abode and garage, but the new workspace was in dire need of some restoration. Built in the late 1970’s, the concrete slab was in decent shape but exhibited 40-some years of use.

That’s where Rust-Oleum’s Epoxy Shield Garage Floor Coating comes into play.

Our first experience with Rust-Oleum floor coating was doing my dad’s floor in 2006. The floor is still holding up well 10 years later, but that kind of longevity can’t be achieved without thorough prep work. As such, there are a couple of things to keep in mind before getting started:

  • Get used to scrubbing. The bigger the space, the more time it takes. Our floor was approximately 25 x 35 feet, which means we put more time into prep than paint.
  • Our personal preference is use the smaller Garage Floor Coating kits. You’re working in sections (10 x 10 feet at a time is the suggested method) and this takes time. Why take the chance that you’ll have to pause and lose half a gallon of coating you just mixed?
  • Our garage is around 875 square feet. The project consumed four kits down to the last drop. We got roughly 218 square feet of coverage per kit, which is slightly under the 250 square foot average printed on the kit box.
  • Rent, borrow, or buy a power washer and a wet/dry vac. You’ll cut your prep time in half!

Follow along with the photos and see how we applied Rust-Oleum’s Epoxy Shield Garage Floor Coating. Should you decide to do this for yourself, you won’t be disappointed with the results!

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Rust-Oleum Epoxy Shield Garage Floor Coating—your garage floor’s new best friend. Designed for indoor use, the coating protects your floor from gasoline, antifreeze, motor oil, salt, and hot tires. Each Rust-Oleum Epoxy Shield kit includes the water-based epoxy coating, degreaser, etching solution, decorative chips you mix into the coating, paper instructions, and an instructional video.

The kit’s degreaser solution works great at removing even the worst stains. When applied through a power washer, the results are unbelievable.

Helper Steve is cheap labor. He works for beer and doesn’t complain when he has to scrub the same stretch of floor 4-5 times in a row. Each step requires a scrub with degreaser and a rinse. We also sprayed the floor with degreaser using a power washer before going back over it with plain water.

How well did it work? The center is ‘before,’ the edges are ‘after.’ And that was with just a quick pass. More work, more clean—and you want it clean for the paint to properly adhere.

Waiting for the floor to dry is like—well, waiting for a floor to dry. You can shorten the wait time with a wet/dry vacuum. Add a squeegee and leaf blower to the mix for extra fun.

After degreasing, it was time to move onto the etching phase. Citric acid is used for this stage. We mixed the acid with water in a bucket and applied it with a sprayer. It’s best to spray in 10 x 10 foot sections, followed by more rinsing and drying.

You can really tell how well that degreaser/washer combo worked!

Epoxy Shield is a two-part system. Pour small can A into big can B and mix thoroughly.

As with the prep, applying the epoxy paint is best done in small sections. Rust-Oleum recommends 4 x 4 foot sections. If you want to use the decorative chips, throw them on the floor while the paint is still wet.

Cure time varies on weather conditions, but give it approximately 16 hours just to be safe. This is what you should see once the paint has dried thoroughly.

How well does this stuff hold up to abuse? We applied Rust-Oleum Epoxy Shield Garage Floor Coating on my dad’s garage floor in 2006. When he moved out of his house this year, we found that—after a cleaning—some areas still looked new. How’s that for an investment?

Rust-Oleum makes a couple other products that can help improve your floor’s condition. RockSolid Concrete Crack & Patch (RLL-60629) will fill in cracks up to a half-inch deep. Our cracks had been previous repaired with caulk, and cleaning all that out would have been a nightmare, so we skipped that step.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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