DIY Versus Professional Garage Floor Coating

January 1, 2024

Broadcasting the color flakes into the wet epoxy is the most technical component of the floor’s appearance.

Epoxy flooring is ideal for garage surfaces but can quickly wear off with time and use. However, epoxy that is applied correctly can last forever. While plenty of DIY kits are available in the market for this purpose, hiring a professional to do the job is still recommended. Consider why hiring a professional to apply a garage floor coating is worth the investment.

Surface repairs and preparation

For surface repairs and preparation, DIY kits include a mild acid wash, which is not strong enough to prepare hard surfaces and does not remove oil stains or cure the concrete. Generally, acid washing needs multiple clear water rinses, which allows moisture to become trapped in the concrete pores for days. If prep isn’t done correctly, it could cause the epoxy to peel off over time.

An experienced professional installer carefully evaluates the garage floor surface. Grinding the surface is the most recommended way to prepare the concrete floor as it removes surface dirt, oil stains, and the smooth, top surface of the concrete. That exposes the pores, which allows the new epoxy coating to seep into the concrete, resulting in a strong bond. A professional can also repair any surface cracks.

Adhesive quality

DIY kits are water-based, and the resins provided are generally diluted to make the application easier. Most DIY kits include a 30% to 40% solid content, which means the material is very brittle. That is why DIY kits are cheaper, and the coverage rates go much farther, which means the thickness of the coating is super thin.

Floor coating professionals use a solvent-based, high-build epoxy with a solid content of 90% to 100%, which means it has extreme strength and can withstand hard impacts and normal wear and tear. The adhesives seep into the concrete to make them adhere for solid reasons.

Color flake broadcast

Broadcasting the color flakes into the wet epoxy is the most technical component of the floor’s appearance. Most people have never broadcast flakes, and the finished product is usually very blotchy with heavy and light-flaked areas. Most people don’t want to purchase a $100 set of shoe spikes, so applying the flake evenly throughout the floor is challenging.

Broadcasting color flakes is a technique learned by installing many floors. An experienced professional can broadcast the flake into the floor very evenly throughout. The flake broadcast is crucial in having a floor that looks professionally done.

Quality of the topcoat

The quality of a DIY topcoat is usually very thin and diluted for easy application purposes, but it tends to wear off quickly. Professionals, however, use top coats that include a high solid content. They include strong tensile strength and high chemical resistance. Only a good quality coat can resist typical garage door wear.

Dry time

DIY kits usually take three days to finish and require 5 to 7 days of drying time to be ready for use. However, most professional installers can complete the job in 1 to 1.5 days and have the floors ready for use in 2 to 3 days.

Long-term performance

Long-term performance doesn’t exist in a DIY coating, as these coats are a cover-up that needs to be constantly re-coated. On the other hand, a professional-grade floor coating system is designed to withstand the test of time, and if the concrete is prepped suitable and high solid coating is used, it shouldn’t ever have to be replaced again.

Overall, while DIY garage floor coatings are tempting due to their more affordable price, they cost more in the long run when they have to be redone. Investing in professional services that can do a high-quality job that shouldn’t need replacing or repair the first time is much more economical. Remember these tips, and be sure to call a professional when the garage floor needs coating.

Quick Response Garage Floor Coating offers epoxy, flake, solid, stain, and specialty flooring options to Phoenix Valley residential and commercial clients. Call us today for a free estimate at 602-428-8626.

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