Concrete can make for strong and long-lasting surfaces and flooring. But it’s not without its pitfalls. Exposure to chemicals, traffic, heavy equipment, and even harsh weather can wear down even the highest quality concrete if left untreated. The right coating can combat the wear and tear and even spruce up your space with a little color and gloss. Review the following elements to help you better understand your concrete coating needs, options, and the installation process.

How to Choose the Right Coating

Garages, shop floors, outdoor workstations – there’s a wide spectrum of environments and spaces in which concrete is the main flooring foundation. All these spaces will come with their own set of circumstances that can have an affect on your choice of concrete coating.

There are several things you’ll want to consider as you have a look at the different concrete coating types available to you. Some factors that will influence your choice of product include:

  • Setting: Are you coating a garage surface? A kitchen? An outdoor area? Or are you coating the floor of a warehouse? If you’re in a heavily used environment with large machinery, your setting may call for a more heavy-duty concrete coating.
  • Traction: Certain surfaces also require more traction from their concrete floor coatings. There are additives which create a grip-like material when mixed into your chosen coating.
  • Chemical use: Concerned about using harmful chemicals? There are many green-friendly choices to choose from. Also note that there are options available, like epoxy coating, that are virtually odorless thanks to their volatile organic compound (VOC) formulation.
  • Temperature: How cold will the surface be? Some concrete coating types bond better in low temperatures than others.
  • Color: Is color important to you? Perhaps you’re hoping to establish a certain atmosphere in your work or shop space. You may want a coating type—urethane, for example—that can help you retain your chosen color despite heavy foot traffic or wear and tear.

If you don’t have extensive experience with concrete coating, don’t be too quick to leap at a certain product without first consulting a manufacturer or an otherwise qualified professional. Some coatings, epoxies for example, may be a popular choice – but that doesn’t mean that they’re the right coating for your project.

Epoxy can provide a long-lasting, high-gloss choice. But it can also make for a finicky application when moisture is involved. Whether you go with epoxy or another option like polyaspartic coating, be sure to take some time to compare your surface and environment with manufacturers’ recommendations.

Tips for Concrete Floor Coating Installation

Use the wrong approach to your coating process and you could find yourself wasting time and money. First and foremost, your product likely has manufacturer directions. If they are not on the product itself, you may find them on their website. Other important tips for installation:

  • Prep work is key. Regardless of your chosen coating, your surface will need to be well-cleaned and thoroughly prepped. If you skip this step, your coating won’t bond.
  • Use good quality equipment. This is true even for seemingly minor items; you might be surprised by what a quality roller can do for your coating.
  • Keep your coats thin.
  • Avoid creating puddles.
  • Double-check the room temperature matches with the recommendations of your chosen coating.
  • Pay attention to proper mix ratios, and ensure that your product is mixed properly before installation.

That said, no tip can save your project from an improper installation made by faulty equipment or incorrect equipment usage.

Make Sure You Have the Right Equipment for the Job

Your coating application can be made easier or more difficult depending on the equipment you decide to use for the project. Coating is not simply a matter of mixing and applying. The equipment you go with may make a bigger difference than you think. Necessary equipment for your job may include:

  • Mixing tools
  • Grinders
  • Shot blasters
  • Hoses and vacuums
  • Trowels and accessories
  • Extension cords
  • Gauge rake with proper CAM
  • Rollers
  • Tarps or other coverings for a mixing station

Every concrete coating project comes with its own unique demands. Unsure what you might need? Connect with a surface prep professional to learn more.

Get Ready for Any Concrete Coating Project with Runyon Surface Prep

Runyon Surface Prep is a rental and sales facility with a unique vision to be a one-stop shop for your varying surface preparation and concrete coating needs. We believe that the best way to put our customers first is by providing dependable, innovative services and products all while adhering to a relationship-oriented approach.

Here are some concrete surface coating and additive options Runyon Surface Prep offers, to name a few:

  • Key Resin: Our Key Resin surface products include epoxy binder, paste, and glaze – all of which are low odor and USDA approved. The Key Resin epoxy glaze holds excellent color retention and has a convenient 2-to-1 mixing ratio. We also offer Key Resin urethane coating and pigment packs. 
  • Laticrete and Spartacote: Drytek moisture vapor barrier, various Spartacote coating kits, pigments, and additives
  • Convergent: Traffic and safety concrete paint

When it comes to concrete coatings, our industry experts understand the process and will steer you in the right direction. Runyon Surface Prep headquarters is located in Carmel, Indiana with an additional West Coast office in Rancho Cordova, California. Wherever you or your project is located, we’re ready to supply you with the equipment, consumables, and insight needed to get the job done!