Which Garage Flooring Option is Right for You?
When it comes to the garage, one of the most important considerations is right under your feet. Choosing the right garage floor can help improve safety of your garage, reduce money spent in repairs, and help make your home more valuable. At Blue Sky Builders, we would like to share the most popular flooring options, along with the pros and cons of each.
Garage Floor Epoxy
The standard for a tough, good-looking surface on the garage floor is garage floor epoxy. Although it is common to hear people refer to “epoxy paint,” in reality epoxy and paint are different products, with different chemical compositions. Preparation and application are a bit more complex than is the case with paint.
Benefits of Garage Floor Epoxy
Epoxy floor coatings offer many advantages when compared to other traditional coatings applied over concrete:
- Epoxy offers a hard wearing durable surface able to withstand heavy and continuous traffic.
- Resists oil stains, beads water, and wipes super clean and will create a seamless surface
- Epoxy floor, when applied properly can last several years.
- Can be combined with paints and colors to mask off chips and cracks
- Provide a chemically resistant surface ideal for manufacturing plants
- Epoxy floors offer enhanced safety by creating an anti-slip surface, heat and fire resistant solution to concrete floors.
- Different patterns can be combined to create driveways and/or identify walkable areas.
- Prevent wear and tear to the existing concrete floor.
- Epoxy floors are considered environmental friendly solutions.
- Some of the products used can also be combined with self-leveling products that can be applied over new or old concrete.
- Require little or no major maintenance.
Types of Garage Epoxy
Two-Part 100% Solid Garage Epoxy: Two-part epoxy floor coatings that are 100% solids are the best choice if you are looking for a tough, long-lasting garage floor.
- Pros: Long-Lasting, Durable
- Cons: More costly than other options, harder to install
- Popular Brands: EpoxyMaster, Epoxy-Coat, Performance Epoxy
Two-Part Solvent Based Garage Epoxy: The most readily available epoxy for flooring, these products are water-based, like latex paint, and are easier to work with and clean up than 100% solids coatings.
- Pros: Easy to work with, Easier to clean, more cost effective than 100% solid, easy to find
- Cons: Thinner coating, less durable
- Popular Brands: Behr, Quikrete, Rust-Oleum
One-Part Solvent: Not exactly a true epoxy, this is convenient, but not much more effective than paint. If you have low garage traffic, and don’t mind retouching every few years, this is a fair option.
- Pros: One-Part solvent is simple
- Cons: Basically paint
- Popular Brands: Behr, Kilz
Learn more about Epoxy by reading How to Epoxy-Coat a Garage Floor
Garage Floor Paint, Stain, Dye
If your garage floor is stained with oil, grease and rust, you can easily give it new life with some garage floor paint. Latex paint intended for use on concrete floors is relatively inexpensive and easy to apply.
Benefits of Garage Floor Paint
- Easy to Install
- Provides Moderate Amount of Protection
- Will withstand automobile fluids if cleaned quickly
- Lasts 2-3 years
- Mold and Mildew Resistant
- Water Resistant
- Easy to Clean
Types of Garage Floor Paint, Stain, and Dye
Latex Acrylic Concrete Paint: There are a number of latex paints formulated specifically for use on concrete flooring. These paints are relatively inexpensive and after proper surface preparation, easy to apply.
- Pros: Easy to Install, Cheap
- Cons: Not as durable as epoxy options, requires specific preparation work
- Popular Brands: Sure Step, Drylok
Acid Based Concrete Stains: These Stains react with the calcium hydroxide found in concrete and penetrate into the flooring surface. Because they are chemical and solvent based, health precautions must be taken during the application due to volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in the formula.
- Pros: Penetrate the Floor, allow many color options
- Cons: Volatile Organic Compounds require additional precautions
- Popular Brands: Butterfield, SRI Concrete Products
Concrete Dyes: Concrete dyes can be used with stains (both chemical and water based penetrating) to enhance color and create a variety of effects.
- Pros: Many Colors Available, No VOCs, Minimal Time to implement
- Cons: Literally a dye, no protection offered
- Popular Brands: AmeriPolish, Scofield, H&C Concrete
Other Garage Flooring Applications
Of course, there are many other options, including porcelain tiles, Interlocking PVC tiles, rolled vinyl, Vinyl Composite Tile, and Polyvinyl Peel-and-Stick flooring. These have their own benefits and disadvantages, and often require professional installation.
Blue Sky Builders thanks all of the contributors advising garage flooring, and as a builder of custom garages, hopes that this information will help you make the right choices in garage flooring that will bring safety and security for years to come. We welcome you to contact us at 630.852.8485 for a garage consultation.