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Clear Coat of Polyurea on Stained Concrete

How To Avoid Lingering Odors & Smells When Installing a Polyurea Garage Floor Coating System

There has been an increase in consumers with professionally applied polyaspartics complaining about lingering odor after installing their garage floor. This same situation can happen with Polyurea and really any product that has a solvent in it.

Pre-Ordering Check-In – Some should avoid it!

If you are highly sensitive to odors or have a health condition that the solvents or smell might aggravate, using a solvent-based product does not make a whole lot of sense.

We also like to mention that products with solvents in them are not a good fit for interior applications, basements, or occupied spaces. You need a lot of ventilation and the longer you can have that ventilation, the better.

Pre Installation Checklist

  • Seal off the door between the garage and the home
  • Ensure filters are removed from any return air ducts and that portion of your system does not operate during use. It is best to block the opening. If you can’t block the opening, leave the filter and replace it before restarting. You may need to check with your HVAC system manufacturer before continuing. Obviously, make sure you replace the filter before turning it back on.
  • Seal off any attic space that is entered from the garage
  • Unpainted walls, insulation, bare wood, carpet etc may hold onto odors. They should be dealt with before installation.
  • Ventilation: You will need constant ventilation during and after the installation. Once the floor is dry to the touch, using a fan to push the air out is a very good idea.
  • Make sure all people helping with the installation have NIOSH Paint respirators
  • Personally, I would not have my young children or unhealthy people in the home while installing.

During Installation

  • If you are in the garage, your respirator is on
  • Young, elderly and those with health issues likely should stay away. The factory reports that the hazardous material content reactivity has been reduced to that of nailpolish, but better safe than sorry.
  • Ventilation The garage door and any windows should be open. Avoid times of day when that means the sun is beating down directly on your uncured floor.
  • More does not equal better. Follow the spread rate in the instructions. If you install the product to thick, you could trap solvents. This is not good for your coating project and will cause the odor and solvent to linger longer.
  • Wait times are crucial and based on perfect temperatures. For our Polyurea, as an example, we typically say 2-6 hours and less than 20 between coats. But if it’s cold it could be ideal to wait 12 hours.
  • After the wait time has elapsed, confirm that the coating is ready for an additional coat by touching it with a gloved hand. The floor should not be tacky; there should be no paint transfer, and the coating shouldn’t be soft or squishy.

After Installation

  • Don’t put anything in the garage until the floor has finished a complete cure. If you notice a lingering odor, don’t store soft goods, wood, carpet or anything else ‘soft or absorbent’ in the garage
  • Ventilation. 3 days minimum
  • After full cure, it can be a good idea to mop to the floor with a light vinegar and water solution. For reasons we do not really understand the colder the water the better.

Please call us with any questions. This is a blog article, not an exhaustive research article. It covers the basics. Feel free to call us for information about the best garage floor coatings for your garage.