Did you know that epoxy floor coatings have been around for a surprisingly long time? The use of epoxy as a flooring material dates back to the early 20th century, around the 1920s. But, it gained popularity in the 1950s when it was used for industrial and commercial applications.
Today, epoxy coatings are widely used not only in garages but also in various settings. Just look at the floors of warehouses, hospitals, schools, and even art studios.
Whether you already have installed a garage floor epoxy coating, or you’re thinking about getting one, you need to know how to clean and maintain it.
Keep on reading for our full breakdown of everything you need to know about the epoxy coating. We’ll start from the different options available on the market and move to the nitty-gritty of keeping it clean and shiny.
Garage Floor Epoxy 101: What Is an Epoxy Coating?
Garage floor epoxy is a type of coating applied to concrete garage floors. It enhances their appearance, durability, and functionality.
It is a two-part resinous material consisting of epoxy resin and a hardening agent (curing agent). When mixed together, these components undergo a chemical reaction that creates a tough, glossy, and adhesive surface.
The purpose of applying garage floor epoxy is multifaceted. Firstly, it creates a seamless and non-porous layer over the concrete. This prevents water, oil, and other substances from seeping into the floor.
This protective barrier enhances the floor’s resistance to stains, spills, and chemical damage. It makes it easier to clean and maintain.
Moreover, garage floor epoxy significantly improves the floor’s durability. It increases its resilience to daily wear and tear caused by vehicle traffic, footfalls, and heavy objects.
With a properly applied epoxy coating, the floor can withstand abrasions and surface degradation over time. Whether you’re dropping hammers and other tools, your floor will stay safe and un-pitted.
Beyond functionality, epoxy coatings also serve an aesthetic purpose. They come in various colors and finishes. Basically, it’s a great way to tie in your overall garage design.
What Are the Common Epoxy Floor Coating Options?
When it comes to epoxy coatings for garage floors, several types are available, each offering distinct properties and applications.
Understanding these different types can help you choose the most suitable epoxy for their specific needs.
100% Solid Epoxy
This type of epoxy contains no solvents and is composed entirely of epoxy resin. It provides the highest level of durability and is ideal for heavy-duty applications. That’s why it is a popular choice for commercial garages or industrial settings.
It can withstand significant wear, chemical exposure, and extreme temperatures.
Water-based epoxy is a more user-friendly and environmentally friendly option. It contains water as a solvent instead of chemicals, making it low in volatile organic compounds (VOCs).
This type of epoxy is easier to apply and generally has a milder odor, making it suitable for residential garage floors.
Solvent-based epoxy contains solvents to help with the epoxy’s penetration and adhesion to the concrete.
It offers excellent durability and resistance to chemicals. However, it may emit strong fumes during the application process and requires proper ventilation.
Flake Epoxy Flooring
Flake epoxy flooring combines epoxy resin with decorative color flakes, creating a beautiful, textured finish.
This type of epoxy is highly customizable, allowing you to create unique patterns and designs. It also provides additional slip resistance, making it a practical choice for garage floors.
Metallic Epoxy Flooring
Metallic epoxy creates a stunning, three-dimensional appearance with a glossy, marbled effect. It utilizes metallic pigments blended into the epoxy, resulting in a luxurious and eye-catching floor finish.
This type of epoxy is favored for its ability to elevate the aesthetics of the garage space.
Before choosing an epoxy coating for your garage floor, you should consider factors such as the intended use of the garage, desired level of customization, and budget.
Mortar Epoxy Flooring
Mortar epoxy is a thicker epoxy system that incorporates sand or aggregates to create a more robust and impact-resistant surface.
It is commonly used in areas where the floor may experience heavy impacts or where repairing uneven or damaged concrete is necessary. Generally speaking, you’re not going to need this kind of coating for residential needs.
But, regardless of which kind of epoxy coating you’re interested in, you can always rely on us to give you a free quote based on your needs.
Cleaning Your Garage Floor Epoxy: The Basics
We all want to keep the appearance of your garage floor epoxy pristine. And, you can. You simply need to use the appropriate cleaning tools and materials that won’t harm the surface.
Opt for soft-bristled brooms, microfiber mops, or dust mops for regular sweeping and dusting. These tools effectively remove dirt and debris without scratching the epoxy’s glossy finish.
Next, you’ll want to avoid using abrasive brushes, steel wool, or stiff brooms, as they can leave unsightly marks on the epoxy coating.
When cleaning spills or stains, use gentle cleaning agents. You get bonus points if you use specifically formulated for epoxy surfaces.
If you have some mild dish soap on hand, dilute it in water. This is generally sufficient for most cleaning tasks. Stay away from harsh chemicals or acidic cleaners. They can deteriorate the epoxy’s protective layer, compromising its integrity and appearance
Step-By-Step Instructions for Cleaning Your Epoxy Floor
Cleaning your garage floor epoxy requires a simple step-by-step process to maintain its beauty and longevity.
Begin by removing loose dirt and debris with a soft-bristled broom or dust mop. For regular cleaning, fill a bucket with warm water and add a few drops of mild dish soap. Dampen a microfiber mop in the soapy solution and gently mop the epoxy surface, making sure not to leave excess water behind.
For spills and stains, address them promptly to prevent any potential damage. Blot liquids with an absorbent cloth or paper towel, and clean the affected area with the same mild soapy solution.
For stubborn stains, create a paste with baking soda and water and apply it to the stain. Let it sit for a few minutes before gently scrubbing it with a soft cloth.
Rinse thoroughly to remove any residue. Always allow the floor to air dry or use a clean, dry mop to remove any remaining moisture.
The Importance of Using Non-abrasive Cleaners
Using non-abrasive cleaners is crucial to preserving the pristine appearance and integrity of your garage floor epoxy.
Epoxy coatings are designed to be durable and scratch-resistant. But, abrasive cleaners can compromise this feature. Harsh chemicals, stiff brushes, or abrasive pads are a big no.
They can scratch the epoxy’s glossy finish, creating unsightly marks and reducing its resistance to stains.
Non-abrasive cleaners, on the other hand, effectively clean the surface without causing damage. Opt for mild dish soap or specialized epoxy cleaners that are gentle yet effective in removing dirt and stains.
Additionally, when scrubbing the epoxy floor, use soft-bristled brushes or microfiber cloths. By prioritizing non-abrasive cleaning methods, you can maintain the beauty and functionality of your epoxy floor for years to come.
Special Considerations for New Jersey and New York
Listen. We love our city, even if the humidity or extreme cold can be a literal pain in the bones.
But, if you want to keep your epoxy floor coating looking fresh, you’ll want to add seasonal cleaning to your schedule.
In winter, road salts and deicers can be tracked into the garage, posing a risk to the epoxy’s surface. You’ll want to immediately remove salt residues with regular cleaning to prevent potential damage and staining.
Spring cleaning, on the other hand, addresses the accumulated dirt and grime from winter. Use gentle, non-abrasive cleaning agents to avoid harming the epoxy’s gloss and finish.
Regular seasonal maintenance ensures that your epoxy floor remains in prime condition throughout the year, standing up to weather challenges and heavy usage.
Extreme climates can impact the performance and durability of garage floor epoxy coatings. In regions with hot temperatures, epoxy may be susceptible to heat-related damage. This can look like discoloration or softening.
To counter this, consider using epoxy formulations designed to withstand high temperatures. In colder climates, freezing temperatures can lead to surface cracking or delamination.
Opt for epoxy coatings with excellent adhesion properties. You should also get one with higher resistance to temperature fluctuations.
Moreover, in areas with high humidity levels, moisture may seep into the concrete substrate and affect the epoxy. You can thank the Hudson for its delightful effects.
Ensure proper surface preparation and moisture testing before applying epoxy. This helps prevent potential issues and ensures the coating’s longevity.
Floor Coating Done Right
Epoxy floor coating has stood the test of time when it comes to durability, performance, and customization.
If you had no clue about the different kinds of garage floor epoxy you can get, we hope that our article has given you a solid start on what might best fit your garage.
And, if you already have an epoxy coating, we’re happy that you’ll be able to keep it clean and dazzling for years to come. Remember, if you have any concerns, or you feel like your flooring needs an update, contact us now and we’ll get things settled for you.