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Old 09-04-2009, 09:07 AM
 
Location: Keller, TX
5,578 posts, read 4,399,335 times
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Debated posting this to the "House" forum but figured this was a better spot for it.

I believe the choices are carpet tile ($3/sq ft), epoxy resin, vinyl tile, rubber tile, concrete stain, and latex paint.

What do YOU think is the most desireable, and which do you think is the best value? Which have you installed?

Thanks!
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Old 09-04-2009, 10:52 AM
 
Location: The Big D
14,874 posts, read 34,535,336 times
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We just had the concrete stained in our new garage.

Here is the kicker on most treatments:
if there is ANY oil or grease on the concrete it will not stick and will come up after awhile.

From those that have done the epoxy treatment it does bubble over time and doesn't last. So we have been told by those that have done it and what they are experiencing.

I would not do carpet tile in the garage. Talk about an allergen trap. YIKES!
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Old 09-04-2009, 11:28 AM
 
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Depends on what you will be doing in there... The epoxy should be across the entire surface area as a base coat and then I would use rubber tiling (those big puzzle pieces) around work bench areas and possibly in a dedicated bay for prized vehicle. The epoxy looks great and is very functional for working on the vehicles as cleanup is a breeze and obviously nothing gets through, the rubber foam tiling is great for areas which you will be doing alot of areas where your standing.

I personally would never tile an entire garage unless it was a garage that only stored show cars that were not worked on in that area... other than that they just trap crud and if its hard, sealed tile your just putting a hard surface over a hard surface which is kind of a waste when you could make the floor look good with just epoxy. Ideally EVERY garage floor gets at least a good epoxy coating for protection and if you choose to rip up tiled sections later its already there. You really ONLY need an epoxy coating and if you have some artistic skills the floor is your blank canvas.

I have to disagree with momof2dfw... For our transportation company we have a warehouse which constantly garages about 20+ of our fleet vehicles. The entire floor is epoxy coated and on top of this floor are vehicles ranging from 8000 to 30000 lbs. These vehicles (buses mainly) are constantly turning their tires in stopped positions trying to maneuver out of the bays which exerts an enormous amount of stress on the floor surface, leaking all sorts of fluids, slipping the tires on slick spots... etc. Also all the workers dropping tools and other heavy objects, the floor holds up just fine.... Its been fine for the nearly 8 years we have been in it. Not to mention seasonal temperatures up here range from ~0 to ~100 every year.
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Old 09-04-2009, 12:55 PM
 
Location: Eastern Washington
12,105 posts, read 39,474,898 times
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Griot's Garage recommends their (rather expensive) epoxy paint, I have not tried it, looks good in their catalog.

I would definitely not put carpet tile anywhere I parked a car, it's pretty much guaranteed to become a fire hazard over time.

Definitely recommend getting something that's intended for a garage floor rather than improvise, depends on if the floor is relatively new and clean, or has some oil stains, and what you plan to do in there - is it a working garage, just used to park cars, and if just for parking, are these daily drivers or garage queens?
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Old 09-04-2009, 07:09 PM
 
10,315 posts, read 38,040,655 times
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Commercial quality epoxy floors, properly installed, are a great way to go for a residential garage.

The problem with most residential epoxy garage floors results from:

1) Improper prep, typically just an "acid etch" and not a correct open, porous, clean, dry and grease/oil free surface (usually created by grinding or blast-tracking)

2) Cheap (in every sense of the word) epoxy products which aren't able to handle the adhesion to the substrate or hot tire issues in service.

I've installed many industrial quality floors in manufacturing, warehouses, retail and commercial facilities, including police garages, fire dept garages, fleet garages, pharmaceutical and food manufacturing facilities. The floors hold up very well and are considered an essential part of the facilities maintenance and upkeep.

The key to doing a durable residential garage is to prep the floor correctly and use quality materials in accordance with the manufacturer's installation directions. Pay close attention to cure times/temps, re-coat windows, and return to service curing time.

I've recently spoken with a number of residential garage floor "specialists", who are doing turn-key epoxy floor installations ... a coat of primer, a body coat, and a urethane seal top coat ... for $1.00 per square foot, installed. Guess how well their cheap stuff holds up? And that includes at least three visits to the job-site for the project to install about 8-10 mils of floor.

A more realistic price for quality 100% solids epoxy on a typical 900 sq ft/two car garage would be in the $2.25-2.50 psf range. That doesn't include floor repairs or patching, that's only blast-tracking a floor, priming it, and then a substantial body coat, topped with a high solids (98% or better) two-part catalyzed urethane (about 3 mils DFT), or a polyaspartic (two-part, catalyzed) which will have and retain a higher gloss and a much more rapid return to service cure time.

Typically, it takes a day to prep a floor, and the latest 100% solids epoxy with a polyaspartic topcoat will be installed in one day. Allow three days before return to service, although foot traffic can be tolerated the next day at 65-75 F temperatures.

If somebody used an over the counter "epoxy floor" from a box store ... well, I've never seen any of these products/systems work. Likewise, the "cheap" solvent based epoxies in the very inexpensive flooring systems will not durably perform. You've got to use the quality stuff if you expect performance.

FWIW ... I've seen broadcast filled epoxy garage floor systems used in car dealership workshops (and showrooms) that have lasted well over a decade and still look great. I demo'ed a flake broadcast product line in one of my old houses garage 15 years ago and the floor still looks beautiful ....

BTW, do not install an epoxy system on concrete unless it's 30 days old, unless you are purchasing one of the systems specifically designed to go in on "green" concrete ... for which you will pay substantially more money for the accelerated installation schedule. You should also test for moisture migration in the floor to be coated ... over 3 lbs of water vapor per 1000 sq ft per 24 hours is the threshold level for failure for most epoxy systems. You'll need a "breatheable" moisture vapor control epoxy system to deal with more moisture than that. How do you test? a "patch test" on your prepared floor will give an indication, but a chloride test kit or a protimeter is much more accurate to guide your installation choices.

OP ... if you want specific epoxy product systems, PM me and I can advise.
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Old 09-04-2009, 07:21 PM
 
Location: Eastern Washington
12,105 posts, read 39,474,898 times
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Ala Verde to Sunsprit as usual.

In general in my experience paint failures of all sorts are generally from 3 causes:

1 Inadequate prep. Adequate prep can be a lot of work, but, tough, do it or fail.

2 Cheap materials. Usually the good stuff is "only" about 2X what the cheap stuff is, but, the cheap stuff is not going to give you a proper surface, and wastes half the money that you could have spent on the good stuff. And it wastes your time applying it, then it wastes even more time when you have to sand or strip the crap off so you can get down to good substrate and do a proper prep job (see #1 above)

3 Impatience. The American vice. Unwillingness to let stuff cure for the specified time, and/or trying to press the item into service or push it out of the paint booth before it's ready. Like the quality whisky makers strss, some stuff just can't be rushed.

Whatever you are painting, keeping the above in mind is worthwhile.
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Old 09-28-2009, 09:26 PM
 
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I came across this thread while researching ideas for my garage floor. I recently dvided my garage into two rooms, one is a typical garage/storage space, not my concern at the moment...the other side is where I have the question. We made this space into a music/garage band room. I picked up the "puzzle piece" rubber floor tiles to put down, I was wondering though what if anything should be done to the floor underneath. The floor becomes slightly damp in a few areas, no puddles or anything like that...I am worried about mold and such under the rubber tiles. Any suggestions, I seem to be reading some conflicting recommendations. Thanks!!!
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Old 09-29-2009, 05:37 AM
 
10,315 posts, read 38,040,655 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brustleen View Post
I came across this thread while researching ideas for my garage floor. I recently dvided my garage into two rooms, one is a typical garage/storage space, not my concern at the moment...the other side is where I have the question. We made this space into a music/garage band room. I picked up the "puzzle piece" rubber floor tiles to put down, I was wondering though what if anything should be done to the floor underneath. The floor becomes slightly damp in a few areas, no puddles or anything like that...I am worried about mold and such under the rubber tiles. Any suggestions, I seem to be reading some conflicting recommendations. Thanks!!!
What's going on in your "band room" floor is moisture vapor transmission due to the area being an enclosed space over a slab-on-grade that was installed without an effective moisture vapor barrier.

You can measure the amount of moisture with a protimeter, or a calcium chloride test, or a simple "patch test" to ascertain how serious a problem this may/may not be. Judging from your observation about "slightly damp" in places and given that you don't have anything on the floor at this time, it sounds potentially like a serious problem.

Until you mitigate the moisture problem, no flooring system will be bonded to the floor for any length of time. Also, you do risk having moisture/mold/bacteria accumulate in the floor, even if all you put down is sheet goods or rubber tiles without gluing them down. The moisture, in addition to causing functional issues with your flooring, may create health issues in the area. It's essential that you control the moisture to a level less than 3 lbs of water/in 24 hours/per 1000 sq ft.

A possible way to deal with this condition will be to use a breatheable epoxy moisture vapor barrier coating. You'll have to prep the floor to an open, porous, and accepting surface condition by either grinding or shot blasting (my preferred way), or, in some cases, by acid etching (not a very good way to do it, but it's how many flooring companies will do it to save money).

Depending upon the rate of MVT, there are products from Koster, SW, and a number of other commercial/industrial epoxy suppliers that may control the moisture in your band space. Don't bother with trying to "seal" the floor with a coating (epoxy, urethane, paint, etc) that is not breatheable, you'll only have it build up moisture pressure and delaminate in spots with liquid filled blisters. You won't find the breatheable systems at your local box store, these are professional level products sold only through the industrial/commercial coatings industry. They're not especially difficult to install, but they aren't targeted to the retail marketplace; expect to see price points for a smaller area in the range of $1.50 per square foot for the coating material.

You might find it easier to call in an industrial flooring professional with the proper equipment and knowledge of the products to prep and install the MVT barrier coating for you. After the coating is installed, then you can install your preferred floor system, such as the rubber tiles, which can be glued down if desired.
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