9 Things I Learned from DIY-ing my Garage Floor with Epoxy

Bridget & CaseyOctober 20, 2016 Comments

If you want to add epoxy to your garage floor like we did a few weeks ago in B’s garage, we highly encourage you to check out this list of the top tips we learned along the way before you get started. Hopefully you can learn from our mistakes!garage-floor-beforediy-garage-epoxy-rustoleum-after-coating

We promise this project was not as intimidating as we originally thought it would be, but we cannot stress how important it is to follow ALL directions super precisely… which brings us to our first tip.

  1. Read all directions and follow them carefullydiy-garage-epoxy-rustoleum-etching-solution

    We cannot emphasize how important it is to read ALL of the directions for each product before starting. From the etching, to patching the cracks, and then onto apply the actual epoxy, reading all of the directions is by far our biggest piece of advice. We found that each product had very specific instructions and following those steps PRECISELY was extremely important.

  2. Watch Tutorialsgarage-floor

    Image and Tutorial via Bower Power Blog

    Like we mentioned in Tuesday’s post, we made sure to read other tutorials and watch as many videos as we could (we really liked this post for more details — thanks Katie!). Watching these videos and reading the tutorials online gave us a much better idea of what steps we needed to take and helped us avoid making some mistakes. <— you’re already on the right track by reading this post!

  3. Have all the supplies on hand in advancediy-garage-epoxy-rustoleum-paint-roller-supplies

    Shopping for ALL of your supplies in advance will save you a lot of headaches down the road. Outside of the actual product, I had to take inventory of the supplies I needed for this project (full list here). I didn’t have items like a face mask, a large squeegee, a bristle brush, etc. so making a list of what I needed for ALL steps and buying everything in one stop shopping really helped save time in the long run.

  4. Allow enough dry timediy-garage-epoxy-rustoleum-etching-progres

    Like I mentioned in the tutorial post, the prep work is the most important part of this process and making sure that there is more than enough dry time in between steps is essential. The floor needs to be VERY dry before patching and the patches need to be VERY dry before epoxy and then the epoxy needs to be VERY dry before moving back into the garage. Make sure you schedule more time than you think you need in between each step just to be safe!

  5. Patch work mattersdiy-garage-epoxy-rustoleum-painting-cracks

    I was under the assumption that all of the patch work would be covered up by the dark grey RockSolid epoxy, especially because the patches were very light grey. Unfortunately this was not the case in all areas (eek!). I tried my best while patching, but I’m not a great patcher and maaybbeeeee I would have been a bit more conscientious of the look of these patches if I knew they wouldn’t be hidden by the epoxy. #oops

  6. The bucket life of epoxy is not a suggestion… it’s a hard deadline!diy-garage-epoxy-rustoleum-paint-brush

    After mixing Rust-Oleum’s RockSolid Epoxy Kit you have 90 minutes to apply the epoxy onto the floor. When the directions say 90 minutes, they mean it very literally. You definitely don’t need to rush while applying the product (90 minutes is plenty!) but keep this time in mind so you don’t get distracted while applying the product. And let’s be honest, at $100 per kit we definitely do not want you to waste this valuable stuff.

  7. Getting epoxy off of your hands is not easydiy-garage-epoxy-rustoleum-bridget-painting

    Don’t even ask how this happened, but it did. We are a bit embarrassed to admit that we got epoxy on our hands … and clothes …and legs and even on our shoes. We quickly found out that getting this product off of your skin is HARD and gets harder when more time passes. We tried soap and water, gasoline (we do NOT recommend that!), goo-gone, and even oily make-up remover and wouldn’t really rave about any of those products! Eventually we did get it off of our skin (I think it was muscle and constant cleaning) but we did not have as much luck on our clothes/shoes. Those stains are here to stay! So wear plastic gloves, and be sure to wear clothing & shoes that you don’t care about getting dirty.

  8. There’s no going backdiy-garage-epoxy-rustoleum-progress-painting

    Once you apply the epoxy there is literally no going back. No taking it off, no covering it up and most importantly, no going back into the garage to fix a spot you aren’t in love with. We started with the back of the garage and moved our way out of the garage until the whole floor was covered. It’s important to REALLY perfect an area’s coverage and roller design before moving on because once you move out of that area, you can’t get back to it in order to “fix” a mistake you may have overlooked. Keep this in mind and really make sure you’re happy with each area before moving on.

  9. When Pedro shows up, act FAST!!diy-garage-epoxy-rustoleum-after-vertical

    And speaking of not being able to walk on the garage floor after it’s covered in wet epoxy that is close to impossible to get off your skin. We were ALMOST done covering the entire floor, Casey was rolling the last section while I was taking progress photos, when Casey suddenly yells, “OMG, A DOG!!!!”. Much to our surprise, she was right…. a random dog from a few blocks down had escaped from his backyard and was heading into the garage and onto the WET FLOOR. AH!!!!!! I froze in shock and Casey immediately snapped me out of it by saying, “Grab him before he walks on the floor!” #duh I somehow managed to grab him right as he stepped on the floor, which was super awkward, since I’m afraid of dogs and I don’t really know this dog’s personality. Long story short — we saved the floor (and Pedro’s paws!) before any permanent damage was done.

Has anyone else DIY-ed their garage floor with Epoxy?
We would love to know what tips and tricks you learned along the way!

Bridget and Casey Signature

P.S. The FREE RockSolid Epoxy Kit + $500 giveaway is still open! If you’re looking to DIY your own garage, you can check it out here!! =)diy-garage-floor-epoxy-tips

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Leave a Comment

  • Jacqui

    Hi! I saw you etched then patched the cracks. I was going to do it the other way around. Is the order of these two steps important? Thanks!

    • Yes, I think you can definitely do it the other way around (and maybe should!). Personally I only had a limited amount of dry time so I did the etching first to ensure that by project day the floor was extremely dry. AND, I wanted the floor to be super clean before patching, but it turned out that just a regular clean before patching is probably enough.

  • Jacqui

    Hi! I saw you etched then patched the cracks. I was going to do it the other way around. Is the order of these two steps important? Thanks!

    • Yes, I think you can definitely do it the other way around (and maybe should!). Personally I only had a limited amount of dry time so I did the etching first to ensure that by project day the floor was extremely dry. AND, I wanted the floor to be super clean before patching, but it turned out that just a regular clean before patching is probably enough.

  • Erin

    OMG the dog thing! that cracked me up!!!!! i love dogs, but if i saw a random dog i hadn’t seen before I definitely would hesitate too because you really don’t know how the dog’s gonna react! but whew you saved the dog and the floor!

    • It was crazy! We were both in shock at the time, and then spent the rest of the day cracking up every time we thought about it!

  • Erin

    OMG the dog thing! that cracked me up!!!!! i love dogs, but if i saw a random dog i hadn’t seen before I definitely would hesitate too because you really don’t know how the dog’s gonna react! but whew you saved the dog and the floor!

    • It was crazy! We were both in shock at the time, and then spent the rest of the day cracking up every time we thought about it!

  • Ashley Sorrick

    Great tips!! That is so funny about the dog! Glad he didn’t mess up the floor since there’s no going back!! I got epoxy on my hands in college while trying to clean it off a paintbrush… terrible mistake!

    • It’s the worst!! I can’t even imagine if a dog’s paws got covered….. it would NEVER come off of that fur. =/

  • Ashley Sorrick

    Great tips!! That is so funny about the dog! Glad he didn’t mess up the floor since there’s no going back!! I got epoxy on my hands in college while trying to clean it off a paintbrush… terrible mistake!

    • It’s the worst!! I can’t even imagine if a dog’s paws got covered….. it would NEVER come off of that fur. =/

  • Oh my goodness, the dog! I’m scared of them too if my husband was finishing the work while I took pictures and I was supposed to grab it…yeah pretty sure that dog would be covered in epoxy because I would NOT touch a random dog (or any dog). You’re braver than me!

  • Oh my goodness, the dog! I’m scared of them too if my husband was finishing the work while I took pictures and I was supposed to grab it…yeah pretty sure that dog would be covered in epoxy because I would NOT touch a random dog (or any dog). You’re braver than me!