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Epoxy Coat

I got really excited to go home and knock out the epoxy coat today. I called up the representative from Epoxy-Coat to clarify a few things. Mostly just to get a rep to give me some reassurance and confidence I’m doing everything right so far.

What I learned:

  • Detailed difference between Home Depot Rustoleum $125 kit vs. Epoxy-Coat $500 stuff I got (Additionally I added $350 of Primer, Clear and Poly)

Water Base vs. Solvent Base

  • Home Depot Epoxy is Water base instead of Solvent Base, so when it dries in reality is much thinner and probably adhere’s differently to concrete.
  • Thickness difference
  • Home Depot stuff are rated to be 6 mil thickness, but they’re water based (instead of Solvent based), so by the time it cures/dries, it really is about 3 mils. – This is why this detail informationis almost impossible to find on the packaging. The rep explained why they’re pretty much garbage and drastically different than what I got. They claim with clear coat it’s 19.4 mil. With polyurethane will be even more.
  • Acid Etch vs. Grinding Etch
  • Most people only do the acid etch which essentially is just pouring this acidic powder with water and use a broom to rough up the concrete surface. Renting a Concrete floor conditioner (not polisher as they’re different things – weaker and meant for different application) with a Diamabrush really roughs the concrete up. Another tip, Diamabrush is ideal because it’s very forgiving unlike an actual Diamond cup which is designed to remove and flattens out the concrete. The Diamabrush only scuffs up the surface for epoxy preparation.
  • One thing I’ll never find out is acid etch for this time around (with different epoxy $500 vs. $125) would have be sufficient.

    The rep really reassured me it’s less to do with my methods of applications rather it has everything to do with the product I purchased.

    They claim to be NASA’s #1 customer. And because I did literally all the coating and grinder the floor, it would be really tough for me to make this epoxy peel. I guess only time will tell.

    Not to worry about the walls with epoxy

    Enough with the informational stuff. The rep also said they don’t usually paint the side walls with epoxy, rather they use concrete paint to match it.

    No wonder I wasted so much of that 30 mins cutting in/trimming! (Especially with the corners). The told me to this time around just focus on the floor and pour 2 giant lines across the garage floor.

    Pouring

    So this time I poured differently. I did the best I could to make sure I can push the epoxy around much easier.

    This time around it was a lot better in terms of my worries. I didn’t come around getting a longer push stick for the squeegee tool, but 30 mins was just the sufficient amount of time for me to push the epoxy around the entire garage.

    Mistakes from the day before

    Aside from all these little bumps created from the previous day – how? I was panicking so I was using a half cured foam brush and it was chipping off leaving bits behind, mixed with dirt and dry wall particles spreading out to the floor…which epoxy later cured with it. Facepalm.

    Oh well, I didn’t really care, just hand twisted some of it off and left the floor as is. I kept having to remind myself it’s a garage floor after all so I can move on and not dwell over it.

    Don’t Roll brush or Mix too fast

    Another Tip from the Rep is I should not roll or mix the 2 part epoxy with hardener too fast as it introduces air bubbles. Which I know I did because I was panicking to have everything work under 30 mins.

    He also mentions that if I continue to work past that start-to-cure-time of 30 mins, it will also introduce air bubbles.

    Lost my Motorized seed spreader

    I got very upset because I spent an hour looking for my fancy seed spreader I got from Amazon for the Color Chip flakes. I gave up and decide to just hand toss them.

    Push and don’t Drag Squeegee

    One key thing I found made this process WAY easier was to push instead of dragging the squeegee. Seems like a no-brainer but it’s easy to just go all over the place when I’m panicking.

    Here are more pictures of the rest of the coating process:

    I managed to cover the floor within 30 mins. But I may have went a little bit over (15 mins) to roll and flatten / even out the epoxy coat.

    I trimmed the Corners & Walls anyway

    Still because the temperature was so cold and the epoxy was still no where near curing (compared to yesterday) so I figured why the heck not to just covered the side walls with epoxy.

    I really was worried it wouldn’t be the same color as the primer. Also I want to eliminate the need to go thru another process of painting the concrete walls. (Unnecessary extra $ & time)

    Fortunately this time around the epoxy was still relatively easy to pick up from floor to transfer to the small roller brush to paint.

    Color Chips

    This was supposedly the fun part. Unfortunately because of the fume smell, I did not bother to ask my wife to help this time around. (Last garage she helped with this process and she did a WAY better job)

    I royally goofed up as I threw it in the upward arm motion (which meant more color chips fell back down in a concentrated area) Facepalm.

    If only I had my seed spreader….grr. I tried different techniques but I just gave up in the end andoverkilled the floor with color chips.

    I even decorated my shoe by accident:

    And I also messed up my front entrance (Wife’s gonna be upset)

    More Facepalm

    But here’s the result of Day 2:

    Final Note:

    It does get really slipper with the spike shoes so Be warned!

    Categories

    DIY, Garage

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