So you’ve finally decided to spruce up your garage by adding some color to the concrete and you want to find the best garage floor paint that won’t break the bank. It must be easy to apply and reliable. With so many products available today, it can be difficult making a good decision on which to purchase. So, let’s take a quick look at which type of paint is best for your garage floor and why.
One of the biggest advantages to garage floor paint is the relatively inexpensive cost to completely change the look of your garage when compared to other floor coverings. But first of all, we need to make sure that it’s paint you are after and not an actual epoxy coating. If you aren’t sure what the difference is, then we suggest you take a moment to learn about epoxy vs. paint. If it is paint you are after, then read on!
Best type of concrete floor paint
Since paint is not as durable as other garage floor options, the key is to choose the right formulation for the best wear. There are generally two types to choose from – latex acrylic for concrete floors and pre-mixed 1-part epoxy garage floor paint. Hands down, your best choice between the two is the 1-part epoxy paint.
The reason 1-part epoxy paint is the better choice has to do with the properties of epoxy itself. When mixed in with the paint, it will provide for a coating that is more resistant to mold and mildew, chemicals, gasoline stains, oil, scuff marks, and chipping. It also tends to bond to the concrete better than latex paint and this helps with resisting peeling and hot tire pick up.
Typical latex acrylic floor paint needs to be retouched or painted over about once a year or so depending on how much use and vehicle traffic that your garage sees. 1-part epoxy paint will last almost twice that long for an additional expense of only $10 or so per gallon depending on brand.
Best garage floor paint by brand
The problem with choosing good garage floor paint is that reviews for these products are all over the map in terms of good and bad. Part of the problem is just poor garage floor preparation and application and not with the product itself. Plus, this type of garage floor covering does best with foot traffic and not so much vehicle traffic. With that in mind, we’ve selected our favorite brand that we can recommend and a second that falls in the honorable mention category.
Our first choice that we recommend is Drylok E1 by United Gilsonite Laboratories. We feel that this product is one of the best garage floor paints that you can purchase. It has the highest moisture tolerance of other paints, dries to a thicker coating, and it is one of the few paints that don’t require a primer to work at its best. It also has better reviews regarding resistance to hot tire pick up among other 1-part epoxy garage floor paints. Dryloc E1 starts around $50 per gallon but is only available in 4 colors. You can find some of the best prices here.
Our honorable mention would be Epoxy-Seal garage floor paint by Seal Krete. This is one of the lesser expensive choices that is a 1-part epoxy/acrylic hybrid and starts around $32 per gallon. They offer some of the best color choices and are easily found at most home improvement centers. Hot tire pick up seems to be more of an issue with this product however.
It is very easy to apply, but they do recommend applying their bonding primer, Lock Down, first in order to get the best performance from their product. Lock Down can be purchase for around $19 per gallon. This brings you back up to the $50 mark and is one of the reasons we recommend Drylok E1.
Both products cover 300 – 400 square feet per gallon depending on surface porosity. They have a long pot life, meaning that you can pour the paint into a tray and not race to get it down on the floor before it dries like a 2-part epoxy coating sometimes requires.
Your garage floor will be much easier to clean with these products. A soft broom works great for loose dirt and debris while a mop and mild detergent works great on the tougher stuff.
A word about hot tire pick up
Unlike a good epoxy coating, most garage floor paints will experience hot tire pick up some time in their lifespan. When hot tires sit on paint, the heat tends to soften the bond that the paint has on the concrete. The footprint of the tire eventually constricts as it cools which causes the paint to collect up with the tire. Then when you back out of your garage, you end up with a bare spot where the tire was.
This can be greatly reduced if you park your car on a mat, tire runners, or some other type of covering such as pieces of old carpet under the tires. If you do this, you may prevent the frustration that can develop from this annoying characteristic of garage floor paint.
Choosing the best paint for your garage floor is important in order to get the greatest results. Make sure you follow all manufacturers’ instructions to insure a successful installation and be sure to pay particular attention to cleaning your floor properly. If you do this, you should get great results and a much better looking garage floor.