How Do I Prepare My Basement for Epoxy?

Applying an epoxy coating to your basement floor helps give your floor a shiny luster and improves its resistance to impact and moisture damage. Before applying basement floor epoxy, you must prepare the concrete floor for a new coat. Prepping the floor eliminates any dirt and blemishes, allowing the epoxy to adhere to the surface. Here’s ATK Epoxy Floors’ complete guide to preparing your basement for epoxy coating.

Clean the Floor

The surface must have no contaminants for the epoxy coating to bond on your concrete floor. Contaminants like oil, grease, mold, and wax affect the adhesion process, causing the coat to release. You can eliminate such contaminants by adequately cleaning the surface.

Some methods that our experts at ATK Epoxy Floors recommend for cleaning your floor include:

  • Acid Etching: This is the cheapest cleaning technique since it does not require special machinery. You must pour acid solution all over your floor and spread it evenly using a bristle broom or scrubber. Let the solution sit for some time to lift the grease and dirt off the surface before removing the spent acid. You should also neutralize acid remnants by cleaning the floor using a diluted solution of simple green for the ultimate clean.
  • Diamond Grinding: This method involves using a machine to grind on the floor to scour layers of dirt and grime that might have built up over the years. The diamond grinding machine leaves your floor smooth by exposing a new concrete layer on your floor. Beware of ring marks that your diamond grinder can leave on the floor, so to avoid this, ensure the machine is constantly in motion when turned on.
  • Shot Blasting: The shot blasting method utilizes a machine that pelts metallic beads on the floor to blast stains off of the base. With this method, you enjoy a flatter surface and no residue left over, so there is no need to clean afterward.

Repair Cracks and Holes

The cleaning process exposes defects on your concrete floor that you must cover before applying the epoxy. Failure to repair holes and cracks on your floor will result in an unattractive epoxy coat or uneven application.

Our experts at ATK Epoxy Floors use an epoxy paste to repair and fill small cracks and holes. We use an epoxy patch kit for larger gaps and cracks manufactured explicitly for this role. Repairing the floor eliminates defects so that your concrete has the right integrity before applying an epoxy coat.

Sand the Concrete

You need a smooth surface for your epoxy coating to hold, so you should sand down the concrete after repair. Repairing cracks and uneven areas leave rough a concrete surface. Wait for the repair sites to dry before sanding them down. Sanding down such surfaces removes the rough exterior and leaves enough texture for the epoxy to adhere.

At ATK Epoxy Floors, we use aluminum oxide paper to abrade the surface. Smoothing the surface will help eliminate any old coating before sanding, exposing the solid surface for your epoxy to bond. The rough sandpaper will create grooves that your epoxy coating will grip as it dries.

Vacuum All Debris

Sanding a concrete surface leaves some loose dirt you should remove before applying an epoxy coating. You should start by sweeping and brushing down areas with visible dirt. Vacuum all the debris from the ground and repeat the process until the whole room is clean.

Dry the Floor

Epoxy only adheres to dry surfaces, so you need to dry the floor completely before applying. Drying the surface may be as easy as leaving it for some hours until you can no longer notice dark areas on the floor.

The basement area can be quite cool, so drying your floor may take a long. ATK Epoxy Floors experts accelerate the drying process by using a heat lamp or hot air gun to warm the bonding surface. We also use fans to improve air circulation in the confined space for a faster drying period.

Apply a Primer

The final step in prepping your basement floor should involve primer application. At ATK Epoxy Floors, we use primers to offer your epoxy coating a better chemical bond. This often results in a durable concrete floor coating and a better-looking surface.

Basement Floor Epoxy Coating Experts

A proper epoxy floor will enhance the look of your basement and improve your floor’s ability to resist damage from water, grime, or regular wear. It’s all about properly prepping the concrete before applying basement floor epoxy.

ATK Epoxy Floors is a premier epoxy flooring company serving Staten Island and its surrounding areas. Our experts have extensive experience preparing your concrete floor and handling epoxy installation for an excellent finish. Contact us today for free estimates on your epoxy flooring project.