Project Garage, Part 3: New Flooring

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Acid etching garage floor
Acid etching leaves a fine layer of concrete dust behind which will prevent the paint from adhering to the cement.

After the acid etching, mix 1 pint of household ammonia into 4 gallons of water and scrub the entire area. This will neutralize the acid. Griot’s Garage recommends using a pressure washer to wash away the concrete dust, though a $10 hose nozzle advertising 125 psi to rinse off the dust worked just fine. Spraying close to the ground and covering the entire surface, most of the concrete dust was eliminated. We mopped, swept, and rinsed once more and no sand granules remained on the surface. However, if you cannot get the concrete 100% free of dust, I recommend forking over the $50 a day to rent a high powered pressure washer. Once the acid etching is complete, use a floor squeegee to remove any standing puddles. The floor must be slightly damp for painting. The entire cleaning and acid etching process took two of us about 6 hours to cover roughly 375 square feet each time.

Rolling the floor paint
One gallon of mixed solution will cover about 250-300 square feet for one coat.  A thicker primer coat will give a greater gloss and be easier to clean but won’t cover as much space.

To mix the paint, use a power stirrer attachment on an electric drill to stir Part A for 2-4 minutes. This will bring up any settled pigments in the can. Pour in Part B and mix them together for 3-5 minutes. Part B is thick as molasses. The final mixture should have the consistency of honey. Only mix what you can use in 1-2 hours as it will thicken with time and be harder to spread. If you need smaller amounts, keep the measurements in the same proportion. Use a foam or sponge brush to paint the perimeter and then fill it in using a foam or sponge roller. Paint with a crosshatch method, back and forth and side to side. We ended up doing one thick coat followed by two thin coats. Let each coat dry overnight.

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