New garage floor Epoxy? Pad? Tiles?

echo2400May 4, 2009

Has anyone upgraded a garage floor with a floor that you have had success with,?Please let us know. The only product I have seen is the epoxy coatings and I have only herd good things about them. I see that Costco has a rubber matt that can cover the whole floor, and 1' squares. I'm leaning toward the epoxy but would like to stain it to look like stone. And then when it gets aged I can look at covering with something else.

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We have always used epoxy so I can't really help you much. Saying that, not all epoxy coating are alike. Be sure you research them. We have been real happy with Concrete Solutions coating enough that this is the second house we have used it one.

One more tip we have learned, if you live in a rattlesnake area, they match several of the tan coatings.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2009 at 9:16AM
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We will probably go with the epoxy on our new detached garaged. I like the stone look as well. One thing to keep in mind is if you can see any of the garage floor from the outside when the doors are down, it can look a bit strange depending on how well the color blends with your house. We have about 8 inches of garage floor showing, so we are not sure which pattern we'll choose.

BTW, I DO live in rattlesnake area! I wouldn't have thought about the color of the floor in relation to them. Thanks for the tip.

    Bookmark   May 7, 2009 at 12:37AM
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After a year and a half on our epoxy floor (warranty expired) ours is beginning to fail due to 'hot tire pick-up'. One friend has a garage floor done with the commercial grade vinyl tile from HD (looks like what used to be called 'vinyl-asbestos' tile) that's been down 6 years and still looks like new. That tile has the color all the way thru and he's used automotive polishing compound to remove the occasional mark. We'll be putting that down once we get the ambition to empty out the garage....

    Bookmark   May 7, 2009 at 9:00AM
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We've had the epoxy coating (U-Coat It) for about 10 years. We used that more-expensive product due to the life-time warranty; however it's failing due to "hot tire pick-up" as others mentioned. I think it's the nature of the product. The average person would not see it unless they looked really close and it wouldn't take much to touch it up. The rest of it looks like new. U-Coat It claims it's due to poor installation; however I followed their instructions to the letter.

I have also used the Rust-O-Leum product on a set of semi-enclosed stairs in a rental place & it worked great.

If you go with an epoxy product they have the coloring flakes & the aluminum oxide crystals (I think that's what they're called). The flakes hide imperfections in the concrete & add interest. The aluminum oxide crystals helps with slickness when wet and it DOES get slick so use an ample amount. The crystals will make it pokey if you walk on it with your bare feet though.

We live in a rural area with lots of snow & mud (think buckets-full that drop off the pickup). The epoxy cleans up very easily & really looks nice. I'd do it again in a heartbeat. It's a lot of work but worth it in the end.

    Bookmark   May 7, 2009 at 9:49AM
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Forgot to mention, there is a waiting period between new concrete construction and application of an epoxy product. Be sure to check into that with any of the products you're using to made sure you don't compromise the concrete.

    Bookmark   May 7, 2009 at 9:52AM
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Commercial vinyl tile would be my vote. I worked in a machine shop that had that for flooring, and it held up for many years, even with metal shavings and fork lift traffic. The company would periodically strip it and rewax it, and it stayed looking good.

    Bookmark   May 7, 2009 at 3:44PM
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We used Griot's Garage 2 part epoxy on our garage/shop floor and it's stood up VERY well to commercial level traffic for 12 years now. Hubby restores cars as a hobby & there's always something being pulled in or out of the shop or up on a lift. There's been times when brake fluid has stood on the floor for over a week before we could get to it to clean it up and there's been standing hydraulic fluid from a slow leak from the lift with no issues. It is beginning to lift in spots now, after 12 years, but it certainly performed beyond our expectations as far as longevity and wear. There are commercial companies that can also apply a 2 part expoxy coating, but for a DIY install, I don't think there's anything that beats Griot's. They have lots of other cool stuff for gearheads as well.

Here is a link that might be useful: Griots Garage

    Bookmark   May 7, 2009 at 5:08PM
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We used the Rustoleum epoxy on both of our garages going on two years now. They still look great! Hubby said the prep was quite easy and we did buy a few extra bags of the "sprinkles" because the kits supply was kind of skimpy. We get lots of compliments and questions about it. The same year my husband DIY'ed it he helped three other friends do the same.

    Bookmark   May 8, 2009 at 11:03AM
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What would any of you say to ceramic tiles? I soon will be providing them - specialty ones that can withstand chemicals, impacts, and are actually meant for garage use. I will assist the do-it-yourselfer with various means of support, including logistics/ shipping, application info etc. I will be buying in quantity and saving you money by doing so. These are attractive, and will last a lifetime. I have experience with this tile, and there is none better. Beats epoxy, vinyl or any other type of flooring for a garage. Please get back to me on your interest level. My email is

    Bookmark   May 11, 2009 at 1:35AM
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I found this company last year. They're in the States and in Canada. They're supposed to be very good.

Here is a link that might be useful: Garage flooring

    Bookmark   May 14, 2009 at 4:36PM
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That flooring is ok as long as you don't actually use your garage as a shop: weld grind etc. It also is quite expensive - Usually around $7-$8 minimum installed per sq foot. It also can look poor when repaired. The other question is what does it do when the concrete underneath cracks? I've considered this type of flooring also, but isn't do-it-yourselfer friendly. I've seen floor tile in Europe that has been in use for more than 60 years in an automotive shop(VW,Audi,Porsche Dealer), and still looks great. I once dropped a fully dressed Audi 5 cylinder engine from about 12 feet, and the floor didn't crack! This place had a 2 level shop, and the lower level had a room for scrap metal. The upper floor had a trap door to drop scrap metal into this room....I was shocked the floor below hadn't cracked!

    Bookmark   May 15, 2009 at 1:47PM
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I just finished my garage floor and used a comination of solutions discussed above. First, I used a Behr 2 part expoxy paint wall to wall and after it fully cured, put down 2 of those car mats sold at costco (GT brand - about 180 bucks for a 7.5' x 17' roll). It is exaactly what I was looking for.

I have two 2car garages that we designed to give us plenty of room for vehciles and storage. Garage 1 is about 750 square feet anf Garage 2 is about 850. After the construction was finished the dust and dirt were awefull. The cost to put down tile or wall to wall vinyl rolls was too expensive. So I opted for the paint wall to wall to help keep dust & dirt down and the car mats to protect the floor against salt in winter. Total cost of paint plus mats for for garage 1 was about 800 plus I bought a pressure washer from HD for 99 bucks which I will have many other uses for so I did not include in the total.

Here are some tips that I learned about the expoxy:

1) Clean the floors twice. The kits come with an crystalized acid that you mix with water to use as a cleaner and etcher. It was OK for the first clean but not good enough for total clean & etch. If I had only done one cleaning and put paint down I am sure it would peel. Prior to the first cleaning, use a scrapper for chisel to get any glue or paint off the floor. For the second cleaning I purchased 2 bottles of muriatic acid for 10 bucks at HD and used 1 pint per gallon in the mix and put down using a plastic flower watering can. I scrubbed and then used the power washer to really work the floor. Amazing amount of dirt & debris pulled up on second clean. Make sure the floor is really dry before you apply the paint.

2) The kits greatly over estimate how many square feet they cover. The Behr kit said it covers 200 to 250 sq feet. That is total BS! I used 6 kits to cover 750 square feet with a nice coat (but not too heavy). I just had enough paint to finish.

3) Purchase extra sprinkles if you have a lot of imperfections in your floor. The sprinkles are the magic ingredient that cover up any marks in the floor when they floated it. I used 10 bags of sprinkles for a 750 square foot floor and just had enough (6 came with the kits and I bought 4 more).

4) The kits tell you to paint a 3' x 3' area and then apply sprinkles. I did not like this approach because what they don't tell you is that sprinkles go everywhere including the next area to be painted. So you wind up rolling over sprinkles which is bad - it might actually prvent paint from getting on the surface. It also results in a patchy look when done. I took some advice from the pro's and made myself a pair of spiked shoes. I used 2 pieces of 1 x 6 big enough to support a shoe. I drilled a bunch of 1.5" screws into the board and then glued a pair of old water shoes onto the top of the board. I rolled all the paint on 1/2 of my garage (I have a cement seem running down the middle so it provided a natual break) and once all the paint was down - put on my spiked shoes and walked carefully out on the painted surface and tossed the sprinkles. This approach allowed me to make sure I had uniform sprinkle coverage acorss a very large section of painted surface. It looks great! The spike shoes do not leave any marks in the floor - the paint closes up over after you move.

5) I used the anti-slip additive and I like it. It does take the sheen out of the floor but when it gets wet it will provide good foot traction.

6) The GT mats from costco are great - and a fabulous price for the size and quality of the material.

7) I did the entire job myself. It would have been nice to have someone help with the trim but DW is horrible with a paint brush.

8) I bought the Behr product becuase there was no wait time after mixing and it had an 8 hour pot time. It was dry to the touch in 2 hours and I could walk on it after 8. The first half of the garage was done in low humidity so it dried very fast. Second half was done in higher humidity so it took longer to dry.

9) When you apply the paint with the roller - roll on in 2 directions. I rolled east to west first and then south to north second. I divided up 1/2 the garage floor into 3 sections, each about 125 square feet, using tape on the walls to make sure that I spread a full paint kit over each section. This allowed me to make sure that I was applying a uniform amount of paint over the floor and that I would have enough to finish.

I got most of my tips reading posts on the garage forum. This site saved my bacon again!

Good luck with the floor!

    Bookmark   May 28, 2009 at 10:08AM
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As far as cost goes the link I added might be helpful. It gives some great information for do it yourselfers. Hope it helps!

Here is a link that might be useful: Do it yourself Epoxy

    Bookmark   January 12, 2013 at 7:16PM
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Annie Deighnaugh

I'm glad you asked this question. DH has a workshop/garage area in the lower level and he needs to eventually do something to finish the floor in there...once he cleans up all the compound the animals ... otherwise known as sheetrockers...managed to glop all over the place...grrr.

I like the look of the epoxy, but my fear is always this given all the horror stories I've heard blaming incorrect prep or installation:

Would regular concrete paint stand up? DH did that to the foundation floor in our store room and it's stood up nicely....but we're not driving on it or spilling oil....

    Bookmark   January 13, 2013 at 9:05AM
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I did the epoxy in my garage about four years ago and I still love it. It's a grey epoxy with white and black paint chips in it. I liked the design better with the chips in it, plus the flooring guys said it helps hide dirt. It's been super easy to clean and just looks awesome. My neighbors are always saying how classy and good it makes my garage look, plus it's just so much easier to maintain and clean. I definitely recommend the epoxy!

Here is a link that might be useful: Epoxy Flooring Company

    Bookmark   August 8, 2013 at 1:11PM
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Check out Sani-Tred. I used it on my cracked garage floor 10 years ago and it's still holding up. It's a rubber based system. It's not cheap but it did the job for me.

Here is a link that might be useful: Sani Tred

    Bookmark   August 13, 2013 at 10:03PM
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In our first home we used a store bought epoxy. We used I think the Rustoleum kit. Not happy with it and part of it was our fault. We learned about preparation of the floor the hard way with that one.

For the home we are in now we went with a commercial epoxy kit from a company called Epoxy-Coat. What a difference! Our first floor looked just like the one in the picture from the post above. We've had this floor for almost a year and it still looks new. I like to work in the garage and nothing has stained it yet.

My wife learned about what we did wrong from this site with information about epoxy and garage floor coatings. It was very helpful. I think next time we might do the plastic tiles. They seem so much easier!

    Bookmark   September 19, 2013 at 3:47PM
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Sorry- resurrecting this old thread to keep all the info in one place.

What are you all new home builders doing with your garage floors? Leaving the 'au naturale'? Epoxy? Concrete Stain? Mats?

At this point (Framing finished) costs are piling up and I'm thinking spending the extra $$ on staining the concrete may not be worthwhile (I'm not even sure what the extra cost is). I hate that my current garage is so grungy though..... Does staining the concrete help hide the tire marks and oil? I'm scared of Epoxy - too many pictures of 'hot tire pickup' on the internet.

    Bookmark   July 2, 2014 at 10:30PM
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I've used U-Coat-It and it's a very easy DIY and durable system for not a lot of money. It's what I am going to use on my new garage. For a 28x30 garage it's going to be 500-600 for standard or 900-1000 for glossy with flake. Highly recommend this product.

    Bookmark   July 3, 2014 at 8:12AM
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    Bookmark   July 6, 2014 at 1:56PM
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Is U coat epoxy? It just seems that epoxy is a lot of work (or money) for a short lived product. Does concrete stain work?

    Bookmark   July 7, 2014 at 10:39AM
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5 more years added to the wear and tear of my epoxy floor since this thread originated, and it's still holding up relatively well, except some spots where the jack and car dolleys (with the weight of a car) rolls around on it changing the car positions inside the second bay. Where we used the texture under the lift, and it gets the most traffic, it's perfect. It's anything but a short lived product if you do the prep correctly! Concrete stain isn't an appropriate material for a garage.

    Bookmark   July 7, 2014 at 12:43PM
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Yes Ucoatit is a epoxy.

    Bookmark   July 7, 2014 at 1:05PM
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I used Valspar Garage Floor Coating on our floor. This was new construction last year and the floor never had a vehicle drive on it and I waited about 7 months after the concrete was poured before applying the coating. So far it has held up well and was an easy product to apply, Even though the floor was never driven on I cleaned it with a Valspar product 2 times just to be sure.

Here is a link that might be useful: Garage Floor Epoxy

    Bookmark   July 9, 2014 at 9:17AM
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One of the toughest and most durable finishes that you can apply to a garage floor today is an epoxy coating. Unlike paint that has to dry, epoxy cures. Epoxy flooring is moisture resistant, which makes it the perfect choice for garage floors that get their fair share of spills and leaks. It also resists stains, including motor oil and other engine fluids.

    Bookmark   December 10, 2014 at 4:10AM
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Ralph, christ your over here now as well digging up old posts to spew about how great epoxy flooring is!!

    Bookmark   December 10, 2014 at 7:07AM
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I'm just curious why people in a rattler area would paint the floor to match....wouldn't you want to see the darn things, so that you can avoid them?
(yeah, Im a northerner...)

    Bookmark   December 10, 2014 at 7:39AM
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I THINK people are saying 'DON'T paint the floor the color of a rattle snake'.

Where's the best place to buy the plastic garage tiles and about how much money to do a 2-car garage?

    Bookmark   December 10, 2014 at 7:56AM
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An update on the Valspar Coating from my above post...the coating held up great UNTIL my son recently had new tires put on his car and all 4 places that the tires rest when he parks have completely came loose and peeled off. My wife parks in the other stall and zero issues there or anywhere else in the garage.
I plan on contacting Valspar with this issue.

    Bookmark   December 10, 2014 at 1:49PM
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I used plastic snap-together tiles from costco on the main part of my floor and they look fine. They've been in about 7 years now.

There's a small step up to a landing before the door to the house where I used epoxy from home depot. I think it was Rustoleum. It still looks fine, although it's picked up some stains that haven't come out with some casual mopping. One thing I noticed is the concrete cracked slightly and obviously that shows clearly through the epoxy. If the concrete cracks under the tiles it doesn't show.

    Bookmark   December 12, 2014 at 6:29PM
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5 years later, and I'm still planning on using commercial vinyl tile. Now that the house and garage are actually built. it's more of a reality. It will have to wait for spring, though. It's a bit of work, but only about $1/sq ft for materials.

    Bookmark   December 13, 2014 at 5:59AM
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