Most garage coating systems are comprised of an epoxy and/or urethane coating product which bonds to a concrete or cement floor and dries to a ceramic-like finish. Many epoxies consists of a single or two-component liquid emulsion which, when mixed, is used as a primer, sealant and protective finish. This material lends itself perfectly to use as a garage floor coating.
As homeowners are constantly looking for ways to improve their home, garage coatings are becoming much more popular. For aesthetic as well as cost benefits garages are being re-purposed as play areas, workshops, offices and gardening getaways, and therefore more homeowners are finishing off their otherwise basic garage floors. Garage coating systems are designed to resist oil, solvents, fuel, mud, water and grease and other chemicals often found in a garage. This is what makes them perfect for alternate uses in laundry rooms, sunrooms, work shops and entryways.
Many of the garage coatings on the market are designed for do-it-yourselfers who are finishing their home garages as a weekend project. The issue that comes into play is that most home owners don't have access to the tools necessary to properly prepare the surface for the epoxy coating system nor do they have access to the professional grade materials to create a long lasting trouble free installation.
As in most things in life you do get what you pay for.
If just plain old gray doesn't meet your garage decor requirements, don't worry, there are many base colors and options available. Epoxy coatings can be filled with color chips or quartz aggregates and may provide a speckled or granite effect. Another popular choice is the use of acrylic flakes or color fleck which ends up looking like terrazzo. Additional finishes might include sheer black, silver or gold and a variety of sparkle finishes and designs can be created to match almost any taste and budget.
Epoxy garage coatings are a practical way not only to beautify your garage, but also to protect the concrete floor against weathering, cracking, oil, chemicals and moisture. Some products claim that garage coatings are actually stronger than concrete, thereby extending the life of your garage floor. Although we would recommend you hire a professional to apply a garage coating, there are many products that can be ordered online or purchased at your local home improvement store that are low odor, self-priming and quick dry, the major downside is the longevity and durability of a "residential grade" finish.
A professional can coating your garage floor in a couple of days for not much more than you can do on your own, while having the right tools and knowhow to provide a professional grade finish.
First, the garage floor must be degreased, cleaned and etched , or roughed up. This allows the epoxy to bond with the concrete. Patching holes or cracks is the next step.
Depending on the finish you want, you may begin and end with the base coat. If you choose a more decorative finish, color chips may be added, followed with either one or two topcoats. The result: a tough, yet beautiful finish to your otherwise boring and utilitarian garage floor.