- 1 The 6 Best Concrete Floor Paints for your needs
- 2 Tips For Painting Your Concrete Floors
- 3 Maintaining and Cleaning Your Concrete Floor
- 4 Final Thoughts
- 5 FAQs
Concrete is one of the toughest construction materials on the market, but the natural gray color of cement does have the tendency to look dull and bland. A fresh coat of paint can make all the difference, giving your garage, driveway, or basement a more inviting look. However, if you want to refresh your space and give it some life, you’ll need the right paint to ensure the job is done properly. Here are some of the best paints for concrete floors, and a few tips to help you get that perfect look.
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The 6 Best Concrete Floor Paints for your needs
You’ll get the best results in terms of durability and finish by choosing one of the following paints for concrete floors.
Made for interior concrete surfaces, presents a high-gloss finish with pearlescent shit resistant to cracking, peeling, and chemical spills. Quick to complete coating, walk ready within 10 hours, suitable for garage floors, workshops, and basements.
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Liquid Rubber Concrete Foundation
Highly flexible sealant, preventing cracks and taring. Easy to apply and environmentally friendly, based on water, safe for humans and pets, usable indoors and outdoors.
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Masonry & Stucco Paint
Usable on any type of indoor or outdoor surface, provides a quick-drying of only 30 minutes, with a semi-gloss like finish.
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Rust Olem Concrete Patch
Helps to easily repair any concrete cracks or holes, for indoor and outdoor surfaces, with an elegant and smooth finish. Fast curing in only 8 hours after applying.
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Valspar Quart White Porch and Floor Latex
Used for painting supplies, paint, and stain accessories, this product manufactured in the United States is a porch and floor latex, easily applied without any primer.
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United Gilsonite Lab Dove Grey Paint
All-in-one paint and primer formulated to protect and decorate all kinds of interior and interior surfaces, for homes and industrials spaces. Non-flammable, easy to use, and effective solution for the new and previously painted surface.
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1. Rust-Oleum Rock-Solid Pearlescent Garage Floor Coating
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This product replicates the look of sophisticated granite or quartz. It also protects the floor against harsh chemicals such as gasoline, oil, and salt. The ingredients are free from VOCs as well, making it environmentally friendly.
Style: Ready to Use
Size: 3.43 lbs
- Coating is ready to walk on within 10 hours, and ready to drive vehicles over within 24 hours
- Provides a pearlescent shine with a high gloss finish
- Resistant to chemical spills, peeling, and cracking
- The roller brush that it comes with doesn’t work with epoxy, enamel, or urethane.
- The product does not come in a can, it comes in two square plastic bags.
2. Liquid Rubber Concrete Foundation and Basement Sealant
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This protective finish is easy to apply, and is suitable for both indoor and outdoor use. It works well on concrete, wood, metal, planter boxes, deck and fence posts, shower liners, basements and much more. This sealant is a water based product that is free from harmful odors and VOCs.
Style: Ready to use
Size: 1 gallon
- Resistant to chipping and cracking
- Easy application with a sprayer or roller
- Resistant to impacts and abrasions
- Completely waterproof
- Need to skim and coat the surface with grout before using; but the instructions don’t mention this.
- Rolling it on can cause problems, so spraying is the better option.
3. Masonry & Stucco Paint
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Use this paint on indoor or outdoor surfaces such as cinder, cement, brick, masonry, plaster, or fiber board. It provides a semi-gloss finish and dries within 30 minutes of application.
Style: Ready to use
Size: 128 FL oz
- Dries within 30 minutes
- Outstanding coverage
- Extremely durable
- Some users have reported that it’s tricky to apply
4. Rust Olem Concrete Patch
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Repair and patch up holes with Rust Olem concrete patch, this fast acting solution will permanently bond concrete. Additionally, it provides complete protection against cracking and shrinkage.
Style: Ready to use
Size: 24 ounces
- Doesn’t contain any solvents, and has very little odor
- Can be painted over within 8 hours
- Leaves a hard finish that’s almost impossible to penetrate
- Works better indoors than it does outdoors
- Some users have reported that it’s still sticky one week after application
5. Valspar Quart White Porch and Floor Latex
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As a ready to use paint for indoor or outdoor applications, it can be applied to most surfaces, providing a vibrant and satin finish.
Style: Ready to use
Size: 32 Fl Oz
- Works well with no primer
- Can be used on wooden floors
- Users have reported that the can is not a full gallon
6. United Gilsonite Lab Dove Grey Paint
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This all in one paint and primer works well on both indoor and outdoor surfaces, including concrete steps, sidewalks, patios, garage floors, masonry floors, and much more.
Style: Water base
Size: 1 Gallon
- Protects your concrete floor as well as making it look good
- Works well on both new and old concrete floors
- Outperforms normal floor paint
- Not designed to hide large cracks
- You will need to etch the floor before using it
Tips For Painting Your Concrete Floors
If you are planning on painting your concrete floors yourself, here are a few tips to ensure you do a fantastic job:
Temperature is Key: If you’re painting concrete outside, you will need to do it at the right temperature. Some people who paint their own concrete complain that the paint doesn’t adhere very well. In most cases, that’s not because of the paint, it just wasn’t applied at the right temperature. If the mercury rises above 90 degrees F or drops below 40 degrees F, the paint won’t bond. It’s also important to mention that the concrete also needs to be the right temperature. Experts advise that you use a precision thermometer to take the temperature of the concrete before painting. You will also need to take into consideration the fact that concrete will be slightly warmer when it’s under direct sunlight.
Time to Cure: As tempting as it is to paint a new concrete slab as soon as it’s been laid, concrete needs around four hours to cure beforehand. Although it’s hard enough to walk over, the concrete still has a lot of moisture that needs to escape. If paint is applied on top of trapped moisture, it will escape by cracking and blistering the paint, which means the coating will need to be redone.
A Proper Clean: The instructions on most coating products will tell you to etch concrete with muriatic acid before painting. However, in order to form a hard protective covering, the concrete paint must bond with the porous surface of the concrete. If the pores are clogged with grease, dirt, or efflorescence, the bonding will fail. When the paint has nothing to grip, after some traffic, it will start flaking. If the concrete is in the garage, hot tire treads will immediately pull the paint off. Therefore, give your concrete a proper clean before painting over it.
Let the Concrete Dry: If the concrete is wet after cleaning, you’ll need to let it dry completely before painting. The coating will fail if the paint is applied on wet concrete. If you’re painting outside, it’s also advised that you check the weather to make sure it’s not going to rain. In spring and early fall, there is a risk of the concrete getting damp during the evening and first thing in the morning, so the best time to paint is during full daylight hours. It would be wise to rent a moisture meter, it will let you know whether the concrete is dry enough according to the manufacturers recommendations.
Painting Over Epoxy Floors: If your flooring already has a layer of epoxy over it, you’ll need to treat it differently than you would a bare surface. Epoxy paints are one part hardener and one part oil; these parts are kept separate until they are mixed just before application. Because of its durability, you can’t just add a layer of paint over epoxy. Here are some tips on painting over epoxy floors:
- When Not to Paint: When epoxy coating has delaminated, don’t paint over it. Delamination is when the layers lose their adhesion and start flaking off. By painting over delamination, you’ll just make the problem worse.
- Choose the Right Paint: To paint over epoxy floors, you’ll need to choose the right paint, namely, one that’s compatible with the existing paint. Experts suggest using linear polyurethane paints (LPUs) over epoxy coatings. They dry glossy and hard, and they’re sustainable under sunlight. However, you will need to do a lot of preparation before applying an LPU. They have a very high gloss which highlights flaws on the surface. Additionally, LPUs don’t do well in humidity, and their ingredients are very toxic, so use it at your own discretion.
- Older Coatings: An older coating of epoxy will require a stronger grit to ensure that the exposed concrete gets prepped well. You could use a 60-80 sanding screen for a buffer, or 80-100 grit sandpaper. Stronger grit also works well for coating that has worn down to the concrete. After you’ve finished sanding, vacuum and sweep, then wipe the area down with denatured alcohol.
- Make Sure You’ve Got Enough Paint: Measure the area beforehand to ensure you have enough paint. Epoxy dries quickly, so you’ll need to make sure the area is painted in one go.
Color Selection: As with all types of paint, epoxy is available in several colors. Ultimately, the color you choose should match the area you’re painting. Here are a few suggestions:
- Ivory: Ivory is a soft color, it makes a room look nice and clean. It also reflects light, making the space appear brighter.
- Green: Green makes a space feel more inviting and natural, it also helps achieve a warm atmosphere.
- Beige: If you’re looking to warm up an area, beige is your best option.
- Gray: Gray is the most popular color for concrete, it’s neutral and provides a uniform, finished and clean look.
- Brown: A brown concrete floor doesn’t sound very exciting, but brown tones are actually a very popular choice. Brown provides the same warm look as wooden floors.
- Multi-Colored: If you want to be a bit more adventurous, colors can be combined to form a distinct pattern, or a mottled effect. The use of stencils can also create a unique design.
- Terra Cotta: Terra cotta gives an earthly, sun-baked, and warm feeling to any space.
- Everglade: This muted yet vibrant soft color is the perfect choice for creating a restful atmosphere.
- Gray-Brown: Combination colors are ideal for making the perfect tone. For some, gray can be a bit harsh, and for others brown can be a bit bland, but combine the two, and you have a warm, uplifting color that lights up any area.
- Neutral Stone Hues: The colors gray and cream can be replicated with neutral stone hues. These gentle neutrals create warm, inviting, and intimate spaces.
- Red: If you’re feeling really brave, red concrete is the way forward. It breaks all the rules for color trends, but it adds boldness, joy, and optimism to any space.
Maintaining and Cleaning Your Concrete Floor
Once you’ve painted your concrete floor, you should keep it in good condition with regular maintenance and cleaning, so here are a few tips:
Spot Cleaning: Most problems start off small and escalate over time. You can avoid this by spot cleaning. This is especially true in garages, where oil spillages are common. Although epoxy floors can withstand gas, oil, and other harsh chemicals, leaving them on the floor for an extended time will eventually damage the finish. Basically, as soon as you notice the mess, get out the mop, vacuum or broom.
Sweep Often: Dirt will scratch your concrete floors quicker than a piece of heavy machinery. When dirt particles are left on the ground, they will cause damage. It’s advised that you sweep often using a soft brush to protect your floors.
Get Rid of Stains: There will be times when you miss spillages and your concrete floor ends up stained. In some cases, rust is the culprit; when you notice a stain, use some warm water and a scrubbing sponge to get it up. When you’ve got a stubborn stain, it can be tempting to use a chemical cleaner or steel wool. Stay away from such products because you’ll just end up causing even more damage to your concrete floor. You should also avoid any cleaning products that contain acid or citrus. Warm water is your safest option.
Watch Out For Soap: Soap isn’t always ideal for epoxy floors, it won’t cause as much damage as other harsh chemicals, but after repeated use it can start stripping the epoxy, making it look worn out. If you really need to use soap, use a very soft soap.
Cleaning Chemical Spills: Cleaning chemical spills (such as antifreeze, paint, and car oil) needs special attention. Start by wiping the spillage up with a cloth. Depending on what you’re cleaning, use a degreaser or some warm water, and gently scrub the area until the floor is clean. For a stubborn spill, add 3 ounces of ammonia to a gallon of water and go over it again.
Get Professional Help: You may have the best DIY skills in the world, but if you’ve tried everything and the spillage still won’t budge, get professional help to avoid causing further damage to your concrete floor.
Now that you know what the best paint is for concrete floors and exactly how to paint them, it’s time to get going. However, painting large areas of concrete is not advised for beginners because of the level of precision required. What you don’t want to do is to make a mess of your concrete, and end up spending more money trying to fix it. Instead, hire a trusted professional to do the job for you. It will take less time and could potentially save you some cash in the end.
What is the best paint for concrete floors?
Epoxy is the best paint for concrete floors because it’s durable and leaves a solid finish. If you have a lot of people walking over a certain area, epoxy paint will prevent it from wearing out. It also offers protection against diesel, acids, heat, oil spillages, and grease.
Can you paint a dirty concrete floor?
Yes, before painting a dirty concrete floor, you will need to clean it. Start by sweeping away any debris and leaves. Then use a scraper or a power washer to remove any paint or stubborn dirt. If the concrete is stained, that’s fine, the aim is mainly to get the surface free from all loose dirt.
How do I seal a concrete floor before painting?
To start, you will need to prepare the floor for sealing; here are the steps you will need to follow:
Take everything out of the room
Use a putty knife to take the skirting boards off the walls
Sweep the floor
Open the windows to ventilate the room
Remove any grease with a degreasing product
If you need to scrub any stubborn areas, use a wire brush
Mop the floor and leave it to dry
Use a quick-drying concrete filler to fill any cracks
Once you’ve completed this process, you can start sealing the floor by following these steps:
Transfer some concrete sealer into a flat container
Start from the furthest end and move towards the exit
Use a paint roller to apply the sealer to the floor
Spread the sealer around the edges using a paint brush
Wait around 12 to 24 hours for the sealant to dry
You can accelerate the drying process by using a dehumidifier or fan
Does concrete paint last?
Concrete paint lasts for 3-5 years, but the exact time will depend on the brand and general wear and tear.
How do you get paint to stick to a concrete floor?
Use sandpaper to give the floor a rough texture, this will provide the friction required for the paint to stick.
Does concrete paint need a primer?
Yes, some concrete paints need a primer for several reasons, here are the most important:
Primer extends the lifespan of the paint.
Primer protects the cement from damage
Primer bonds the paint and the concrete
Primer fills small gaps and voids
Primer transforms a poor surface into one that is easy to paint over