Proper garage floor repair will pay-off when it comes time to apply your epoxy garage floor finish. Keep in mind that your new finish will have a much higher gloss than a plain concrete floor and every little blemish will be highlighted,so it is best to take the time and effort to perform the repairs so you can enjoy the best possible results.
Step 2 - Garage Floor Repair
Any good repair compound used for filling cracks or repairing broken, chipped, spalled or low areas (birdbaths) will contain polymers or other non-cementitious chemical additives to the portland mix that aid it in setting up fast and bonding well to the existing concrete floor.
The editor's recommend the trade-name product - FlexSeal™ that is sold in 5 gallon (U.S.) containers. It has a 9 - 12 minute workability time once removed from the container and a one-hour cure time. You can use it to fill low spots, cracks, or to repair chipped areas of your garage floor. It exhibits superior bonding ability and can be used both indoors and outdoors.
The nice thing about this product is that you only need to remove from the container, the amount you can use in the 9 - 12 minute workability time limit. There is no need to waste lots of material because it set-up before you could work it.
Once you mix and stir the entire 5 gallon container you can close it while you are working small areas during every 9 - 12 minute interval. You have to work this type of product fast, so it is best to have a planned approach as to where you will start and where you intend to finish.
Once you have completed Step 1 outlined on our Garage Floor Preparation page, you can begin you garage floor repair process. Since your floor is clean from the Step 1 process, it may be wise to be working the repair process in a pair of old socks, or very clean sneakers or boots.
For filling cracks, it is best to use a 1-12" to 2" wide putty knife to work the compound into the crack-void. The idea is to get as much compound into the void and as little as possible left on the floor that forms small ridges, etc. that will show-up in the final finish. You don't want to start more than 1/2" back from the crack on the floor surface to accomplish this, or you will be spending too much time drawing your blade back over the floor surface to reduce the possible ridges as the compound begins to set and harden.
For building-up low spots in your floor it is best to do this in layers depending on how deep the low spots are. If it is a spot that amounts to a 1/8" to 1/4" depression, you can do it in one application. If it is a spot that is caused from spalling, and deeper than 1/4", then you should do it in two lifts done and hour apart. Getting it to blend with the edge of the existing floor to make a seamless joint is the hard part. You may have to use a 1 x 4 screed board for this while a helper knocks-down any ridges with a putty-knife. Think it through before you start!
If you have chipped or broken corners at pre-cut joints, you can use your putty-knife to work the compound into the area for that type of garage floor repair work. If the broken area is deeper than 1/4", build it up in lifts of 1/4" thick, one-hour apart. When you get to the point that you have raised it to the proper elevation, do your best to blend it into the existing concrete surface leaving no ridges. You want as smooth as surface as possible for your epoxy garage floor finish.
Once you have completed your garage floor repair work, you will need to etch the entire floor surface as a final step prior to applying the epoxy garage floor finish. Proper garage floor preparation is key to the successful application of a epoxy garage floor finish. Next, visit our page: Garage Floor Etching to learn about that process.
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