Garage floor
#11
  Re: (...)
Hi folks. My concrete garage floor is 17 years old and heavily stained, mostly from oil-based finishes, solvents, paint, and heaven knows what else. The floor also has some lengthy cracks that I have filled over the years. I would like to refinish or cover the floor and would appreciate your thoughts.

The garage is packed tight with heavy woodworking equipment, workbenches, and lumber. Emptying the entire space for a thorough cleaning and etching will be challenging. I could do one bay at a time, but the thought of having to re-do this every few years is undesirable.

Anyone have experience using rolled goods on their garage floors? The cost seems high, but if the surface is durable and there is little or no surface prep required, maybe the upfront cost balances out over time if I don't have to refinish the floor every few years. My garage has 3 bays: 2 for woodworking stuff and 1 for my wife's car.

Any other ideas for a low-maintenance garage floor?

Thanks for any feedback and ideas.

Rich
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#12
  Re: Garage floor by RichK (Hi folks. My concre...)
Be careful if you plan to etch the floor using muriatic acid. As it works it emits gases that almost immediately cause cast iron to rust. It happens so fast you can almost see it happening.
Howie.........
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#13
  Re: Garage floor by RichK (Hi folks. My concre...)
The plastic / rubber roll out floors and the similar tile products seem to have high reviews for durability and ease of installation but with a con of high cost. You seem to see them in hobby automotive workshops more than woodworking ones.
Shame on the men who can court exemption from present trouble and expense at the price of their own posterity's liberty! - Samuel Adams
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#14
  Re: Garage floor by RichK (Hi folks. My concre...)
My garage floor is over a crawl space. In the rainy weather the crawl space is substantially cooler than the rest of the area and my floor gets wet with condensation. A rolled floor would grow mold or mildew in my situation.

If that is not your situation try a roll of the stuff. They sell it for about $80.00 at Sam's Club though I have not looked for it recently. It is cheap enough to test out.

I bought horse stall mats for my dog to sleep on. It gives excellent insulation and seems to wear well. If you are standing on the floor for long periods of time this will act as an anti-fatigue mat and also keep your feet warm: http://www.greatmats.com/horse-stall-mats.php

At 3/4" it is thicker and seems much tougher than the stuff you see in the stores. (More expensive too.)

http://www.greatmats.com/horse-stall-mats.php
No animals were injured or killed in the production of this post.
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#15
  Re: Garage floor by RichK (Hi folks. My concre...)
My garage was 30 years old when I bought the house. It had never been sealed and was spalled pretty badly and had some oil stains for good measure. I spent a lot of time cleaning it and skimming it with concrete patch, then used an industrial two part epoxy to coat it. That last maybe 2 years before it started to flake and loosen in spots. I've done it twice more in the subsequent 25 years and nothing but nothing will stay bonded to it more than a couple of winters. My conclusion is that epoxy and other sealers probably work great on new concrete but not so good on stuff that has heavy damage/contamination, despite cleaning and repair. When I get a few years older and am too old or lazy to clean the driveway I plan to get it torn out and replaced with a concrete one with hot water heat under it. I'll get the garage floor torn out and replaced at the same time. I'll be the envy of the neighborhood.

I wonder how those roll out mats work with wood working equipment. Can you roll equipment onto them easily? Are they slippery when sawdust gets on them? I have no clue, but those are questions I'd be looking to answer. Interlocking wood/rubber panels would seem like another option to research.

John
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#16
  Re: Re: Garage floor by jteneyck (My garage was 30 yea...)
About forty years ago I did my first concrete job, a garage floor. I got my best friend to help and neither of us knew what we were doing. When we were through the surface was flat and level but very rough. I bought some of the cheapest 12x12 vinyl floor tiles I could find and glued them to the concrete. They worked great for my woodwork shop but I never drove on them.
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#17
  Re: Re: Garage floor by jteneyck (My garage was 30 yea...)
John,

I'm wondering how well epoxy keeps the adhesion to anything exposed to temperature gradients. I think the different expansion rates will cause it to loose its grip. I was using "high strength" epoxy to glue 2 glass pieces together on an item that sees a modest rate of temperature cycling. The pieces of glass were rock solid to start with but after about 25 cycles they came apart. I would not trust epoxy paint on my garage floor.
Mats
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#18
  Re: Garage floor by RichK (Hi folks. My concre...)
The workshop at a local Porsche speed shop (with lifts) was done in porcelain tile. It looked pretty rich. Stick with dark colors and dark grout.
No animals were injured or killed in the production of this post.
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#19
  Re: Re: Garage floor by Howard Acheson (Be careful if you pl...)
Good advice Howard. I use muriatic acid once in a while to clean and pickle copper,brass,or bronze in preparation for hard soldering.
The first time I used it in the shop my bandsaw blades that hung on a wall above the acid container started to rust within a couple of hours.
I only use it outside if at all.I found white vinegar works too,slower ,but safer.
mike
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#20
  Re: Re: Garage floor by Cooler (The workshop at a lo...)
That is the other option I've considered. Ceramic tile is used all the time in Germany in stores and commercial settings, even industrial ones sometimes. If there are issues with tearing out the current floor I may very well go with tile.

John
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