Professionally finishing your garage floor can really transform and finish your space. Concrete coatings like polyurea and epoxy make a garage feel more like an extension of your living space instead of just a place to store camping gear and cars. If your garage doubles as a space for your kids to hang out, a workshop, gym or just as storage, finishing the floor is a great option. Concrete coatings have become popular for outdoor spaces as well like pool decks and patios.
After you have decided to finish your concrete surfaces you will need to decide if you want to do your project yourself or use a professional like Roe Painting. While the project may feel like it would be easy enough for a DIY project there are factors to consider.
Cost is obviously a huge portion of any project and often why people consider completing a project on their own. A garage floor coating kit from a home improvement store will be a much lower price point than a professional. This has less to do with price gouging and more to do with quality of the product. The polyurea or epoxy you get from the home improvement store is much different than what a professional uses. A DIY kit will range from 100-500 dollars depending on the size of your garage and the kit you select. There are additional materials you still need to consider like tape, brushes, and other preparation materials. Professional concrete coatings range in price as well and can range from $3,000 – $6,000 depending on the contractor, material used, area you live in and size of your garage. The condition of existing concrete can also affect the price.
Application of the material is similar to the application of paint but the prep work to get to this step can take a lot of time. Preparing the subfloor will make a huge impact on how your floor turns out. Professional concrete coatings contractors use specialty tools like a shot blaster or diamond grinder to both clean and abrade the floor. When the flooring product does not adhere properly it can peel. DIY types likely cannot get access to these speciality tools or will need to rent them at a high cost. Acid etching is an option when these tools are not available. Acid etching is a processing that uses a highly acidic solution to both clean the concrete and etch it for adhesion. Acid etching does clean the concrete well but does not abrade the surface to the same level that mechanical tools do. The lower level of abrading can lead to delamination and peeling over time. DIY garage floor coatings may look good for a year or two but professional finishes are designed to last for 20 years or more.
DIY epoxy and polyurea and professionally applied materials will come out different as well. The vinyl flake options for DIY kits are sparse and not have the same quality that professionals use. Solid color kits are popular for DIY use because they are easier to apply. These kits are ok but don’t give the floor the same finished look professional finishes do. When applying material, pinholes, roller marks and bubbles can occur, the thicker flakes of a professional coating hide these imperfections much better. Professional garage coatings has a much better overall look than DIY. Pros also have a greater variety of color options.
Both epoxy and polyurea are designed to be durable! Professional contractor quality products take that durability to the next level. The quality is not comparable in these products and it shows in the durability. DIY projects will need to be redone more frequently, negating the cost savings over time. The initial investment is higher with a professional but it pays for itself over its lifespan compared to DIY.
We recommend considering the overall cost and quality before choosing to DIY a project. While we understand sometimes a professional project is cost prohibitive it is important to understand you are not comparing apples to apples. Roe Painting is happy to meet with you to further discuss your concrete coating project. We have many completed projects under our best and can help you make the best choice for your concrete surfaces. We are confident you will see the value of professionally applied material versus a DIY project.