Garage Room Additions: Preparing Concrete Floors For Staining

Turning your garage into an extension of your home requires several steps and expenses, from adding insulation to placing it on the home's HVAC system. One place you can save money and time is on the floors. Instead of opting for new flooring, consider decorative stained concrete. The finished floor can resemble tile or even leather when you're done. The following two tips will help you get your garage ready for the staining process.

Clean It Well

The amount of preparation depends on the state of the concrete. In a garage, your biggest concerns are going to be oil stains and paint stains. You can remove paint with a pressure washer, but grease requires a bit more work.

You will need to cover the stain with a degreaser formulated for removing oil stains from concrete. Let the degreaser dry completely, which may take up to 8 hours. As it dries, it leaches the grease out of the concrete. You can then simply sweep it up once it dries to powder. Deep grease stains may require multiple treatments.

Once the stains are up, simply sweep the floors thoroughly and mop them with clear water.

Fix Any Damage

Cracks can ruin the look of the floor. They can be common on old garage floors, since heavy equipment or temperature fluctuations can cause cracking. You can fill almost any crack with a concrete crack filler. This is an epoxy, made from a mixture of concrete and polymers, that adheres to the crack. Unfortunately, crack fillers don't usually take staining. To fix this issue, you can mix a concrete dye in with the epoxy before filling the cracks. The tricky part is matching the dye color to the stained concrete.

Another option is to resurface the entire floor with a thin layer of fresh concrete. This will give you a smooth, crack-free surface. Resurfacing is more expensive and time-consuming than filling cracks, so it's usually a better option only when cracking and damage is extensive.

The above two processes are vital for prepping your old garage floor before staining. After it's stained, how do you keep it looking like new? Daily dust mopping is your best defense against damage, since it will remove any fine particles or grit that could dull the concrete surface. For deeper cleaning, simply mop the floor with a damp mop. Generally, there is no need for detergents or cleaning chemicals. You can also seal the floor, which will further protect it against scuffs and stains.

Talk with a company like The Carolina Floor Project to get professional help and opinions to prep for and maintain your concrete stain.