DIY Installation instructions (Epoxy)
Important Note: Only the installer is familiar with actual job site conditions. Installation instructions can not cover all eventualities. These instructions are designed for a typical application. If you have an atypical application or think you may have an atypical application, please contact us immediately. Proper installation is the responsibility of the installer.
To insure the success of your floor system, proper substrate preparation is key! For many applications our Gel Tek Acid Wash is sufficient prep. The best method of surface preparation is grinding. We recommend using a handheld diamond grinder or walk behind single head diamond grinder for larger projects (250sqft) or more. Grinding the surface exposes the pores of the concrete which allows the coating to penetrate for a monolithic bond. A vacuum should be attached to the grinder to remove the dust and debris while grinding. Begin by inspecting the floor for discolorations from oil and other contaminants. Using a degreaser clean the contaminated areas and let dry. After the floor has dried, start by snapping a chalk line at the middle of the garage door track from one side to the other. Next grind along the chalk line being sure not to go over the line. Continue grinding the remainder of the floor until uniform in appearance and porosity. (Quick test) Take a little cup of water and using your hand dip a few ounces of water onto the surface. If the water soaks into the concrete quickly the surface has been properly prepared. If the water sits on the surface and does not want to be absorbed by the concrete, more of the surface needs to be ground to expose open pores. Once you have properly ground the surface, using a shop vacuum, thoroughly vacuum the floor to remove all dust and debris. This will complete the surface preparation for a garage floor.
It is fairly common to have hydrostatic vapor transmission. This means moisture or vapor travels through the pores of the concrete and comes to the surface with some degree of pressure. Some degree of moisture at the surface is acceptable when applying liquids to concrete, but too much can and will lead to adhesion problems. To determine if moisture is present place a black plastic bag on the prepped surface and tape down tight with duct tape. Inspect the test areas after 8 hours of adhesion to the substrate. Look at the plastic and if moisture is present on the underside of the test plastic then you should apply a liquid vapor barrier prior to installing the floor coating system.
Vapor Barrier Application:
If it is determined by the moisture test patches that there is vapor transmission present in your concrete substrate, you will need to apply one coat of liquid vapor barrier prior to installing your floor system. First make sure the floor is clean, dry and free of debris. Start will opening the container of liquid vapor barrier. Give it a quick stir with a stir stick and pour it into a paint tray. Using a 3/8 nap roller cover (supplied), roll out an even coating of liquid vapor barrier(1 gallon covers 250-350 sqft) to completely saturate the concrete. The vapor barrier will soak into the pores of the concrete and solidify to block out vapor transmission. One even coating will do just fine! Let dry for 30 minutes before beginning with step one of the floor system installation.
Most garage floors and concrete surfaces have what is called a control joint. This is a purposefully placed saw cut that is designed to control where the concrete will eventually crack. YES I said eventually crack! It is an almost certainty that concrete will crack. So the installers of the concrete place saw cuts so the concrete cracks in the joints of the cuts instead of a spider web of cracks throughout your floor! For a seamless look to your floor system we recommend using Flex joint filler. Flex joint filler is a 2 component polymer mixed at a ratio of 1 to 1 (equal parts). See Instructions on packaging for use! Using a small putty knife or drywall taping knife fill the control joint and scrape the surface smooth to remove all excess Flex joint filler. The surface of the Flex joint filler should be flush with the concrete after filling the joints. If the control joints are not completely flush after your first application of Flex joint filler, wait 2-3 hours or until dry to the touch and apply another coat of Flex joint filler to make the joints flush with the surface.
Some garage floors and concrete surfaces will have some stress cracks. This is common and easy to fix using the Crack repair. The Crack repair material comes in a small kit and is applied with a small putty knife or drywall taping knife. Look over the floor and note all the cracks before beginning the repair. Mix up the Crack repair material per instructions on the label and fill in all the cracks. (Tip) apply the Crack repair material much like drywall mud. Apply in one direction and scrape off the surface in the opposite direction along the crack. Be sure to scrape all excess material from the surface so there are no globs or excess material. Allow Crack repair dry for 2-3 hours, or until it is dry to the touch then proceed with step 1 of the installation instructions.
PRE COATING SET UP:
Start with opening the container of the Base coat color liquid and giving it a good stir until uniform in color. (Mix all Base coat color containers) Next open your box of decorative broadcast media and place directly outside the garage door so it’s readily available for use! (Tip) an empty ice cream pail can be used to transport the broadcast media to the garage floor when broadcasting. Next get your i floor spikes adjusted so they fit snuggly over your shoes (Helper job). Install one of the roller covers to the roller frame and attach the frame to a broom handle or extension pole (not supplied). Place a liner in the paint tray and have all your materials and installation tools prepared. Mask off any areas where you could accidentally contact with a wet roller. Walls, doors, trim etc…. Along the chalk line you made earlier at the edge of the garage door opening, run a strip of duct tape to the outside edge of the line. This will be the end point of the floor system. Once completely coated you will pull the tape off to reveal a nice straight edge.
Epoxy Floor System Installation instructions:
Read all the instructions before starting step one! For the best results and ease of installation we recommend 2 people install the system.
Step 1: Base coat application
Important Note: Flakes or other media will be broadcast in this step. Broadcast flake at your desired spread rate into the WET (installed) base coat. We suggest doing small sections at a time. Broadcast into wet basecoat let dry. Remove loose chips with scrapper and shop vac floor. Apply clear topcoat over chips to encapsulate.
Begin by mixing 2 parts B side base coat component and 1 part A side basecoat component together in a small mixing bucket (Ice Cream pail works great) (Mix small amounts material at a time). Next pour out the mixed base coat material onto the floor along the inside wall of the area you are coating. Be sure to plan your way out before you begin. Then using the supplied chip brush to get into all the corners and areas the roller can’t get too. Next spread out the mixed coating with a squeegee and back roll with 3/8” nap roller. Or completely saturate the roller and begin rolling material on to the concrete surface like you would paint on a wall. If you are only going to apply with a roller, Use the Dip and roll technique. Simply pour the mixed material into a paint tray and dip the roller in and apply to the substrate. (NOTE) You will have about 20 minutes to use the mixed materials. Start at the front of the garage and work from one side of the room across to the opposite wall. Work across the room in approximately four foot wide passes being sure to slightly overlap the previous pass. The roller cover holds the appropriate amount of material to cover 2-3 square feet for each dip in new material, so apply the base coat without drying out the roller between dipping. Open and mix new gallon kits of material until the concrete substrate is completely coated. After you have coated up to the duct taped line at the edge of the garage door opening, pull the duct tape off so the coating does not wick under it. Once the Base coat is complete wait 6-8 hours or until dry to proceed to step 2.
STEP 2: Top Coat application (If Applicable)
The Top coating is the key to a durable floor system. Multiple coatings can be applied for added durability and strength or if you are unhappy with the results of your first application, but not needed in most situations.
The Top Coat is a 2 component material. Prepare your roller, frame, and tray, and mix 2 parts B and 1 part A together for 2-3 minutes. Then pour Top Coat into the tray. This coating has a 20 minute pot life, meaning you have 20 minutes to work with the coating before it starts to become tacky. Begin with using your supplied chip brush by getting into all the corners and tight spots that a roller can’t get too. Apply a generous amount to your roller and begin rolling in the same fashion as the basecoat, beginning in the front of the garage and working in approximately four foot wide passes overlapping each pass slightly. You should leave enough material on the surface to spread out evenly with the roller, but not so much it puddles or leaves lines, approximately 10 mils. Continue opening new containers of Top Coat and applying as necessary to completely cover the entire surface. After completing the final Top Coat let the coating cure for 24hrs before foot traffic and 48 hours for vehicle traffic.