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How To Prepare and Paint a Concrete Floor

Sep 2, 2008
Unpainted, concrete can appear dull and drab looking. But with a little hard work, you can completely transform that floor and give it a completely new look. Painting concrete is great way to spruce up a garage floor or laundry room at a minimal cost.

Concrete is more difficult to paint than sheet rock, and it requires a few more steps. If you are planning to paint a concrete floor there are some tools and material that you will need to complete the project. You will need a mask, eye protection, gloves, a paint brush, a paint roller, a paint tray, concrete primer, concrete paint, etching acid, tri sodium phosphate (TSP), hydraulic cement, a scrub brush, bucket and mop.

Thoroughly cleaning of the surface to be painted is probably the most important step. You must remove any oil or grease from the surface. Larger grease stains can be absorbed by using kitty litter to absorb it.

This first step in painting a concrete floor is to mix the TSP cleaning solution according to the manufacturer's instructions. Mop the floor thoroughly with the TSP solution, rinse well and allow it to completely dry.

Next, use the hydraulic cement to repair any cracks or holes in the concrete.

Wearing gloves and eye protection, mix the etching acid with water according to the manufacturer's instructions. Make certain to mix the etching acid thoroughly before you begin using it.

Pour a small amount of etching acid on the concrete floor and using the mop spread the acid in a small area. Continue this process until you have completely etched the entire floor. Allow the acid to fully dry and then use a shop vac vacuum to clean the etched concrete and remove all dust and debris from the floor.

Once you have completely etched and cleaned the floor it is now time to apply the primer. Stir the primer using a stir stick make sure to mix it well. Pour some primer into the paint tray reservoir. Using your brush, cut in around the entire perimeter of the room and around any other fixed objects in the room such as poles or floor vents. After cutting in the room, using the roller and paint tray, roll a coat of primer on the floor working in about four foot sections. Make sure not to paint yourself into a corner. Allow the primer to fully dry before applying the paint,

After the primer is dry, using the same steps that you used when applying the primer, now apply the concrete floor paint in the same fashion. Drying time will vary depending on what type of floor paint that you used.

The last step is applying a sealer to the floor. Sealers can have strong fumes, so be sure to keep the area well ventilated and wear a mask. A coat or two of a quality sealer will protect your painted floors for many years to come.

Although painting a concrete floor can be a tough job, the results are great. Just follow the guidelines in this article and I believe you will be happy with the results.
About the Author
The author is the owner of Pigeon Forge Painting in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee and has over twenty five years experience as a professional painting contractor. For more information visit
Pigeon Forge Painting
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