Your mind is made up. You’ve seen a hundred epoxy kitchen floors floating around Pinterest and you’re ready to take the plunge on your own home.
But before you head to YouTube for a quick tutorial, there are some important things you need to know about DIY epoxy flooring that could mean the difference between a job well done and a complete disaster.
Can I epoxy my kitchen floor?
Epoxy is a tough customer, and it has its drawbacks. The good news is that once you’ve gotten your floor finished up, it should last for a long time. If you’re careful about cleaning the floor initially and then properly maintaining it, you won’t have to worry about the epoxy wearing out.
There are two main types of epoxy: gel-type and powder-type. Both work well in the kitchen—the powder type will dry faster so you’re less likely to need to sand it down after installation; the gel type gives more strength so you’ll get better adhesion.
Powder-type epoxies tend to be stronger and more forgiving on uneven surfaces like tile or wood, whereas gel-type will stick better on those surfaces with smooth finishes like ceramic or marble floors.
You’ll need resin for the epoxy when you buy it professionally; then mix that with hardener (a combustible substance) in some proportions depending on how thick you want your coating of resin.
You can add as many ounces of hardener as necessary to achieve the desired thickness—if there’s too much hardener in your mixture, use less resin and add additional hardener later if necessary; if there’s too little hardener, be sure to add some before installation.
After mixing all of these ingredients together according to instructions provided with your coating kit, let it sit until completely dry before attempting to use it—it should take between 30 minutes (for small jobs) to 24 hours (for larger jobs).
Can you epoxy any floor?
Nope. You need to keep in mind that even if you have concrete floors, you’ll still need to make sure they are prepared properly and that they will accept the epoxy floor coating. There are four primary criteria your concrete must meet before epoxying:
- Preparedness. This includes being clean, dry, and free of contaminants like dust and grease.
- Structural soundness. The concrete must not be cracked or spalled (flaked).
- Thickness. The concrete must be at least 3/8″ thick after finishing and polishing.
- Strength. The concrete must be a minimum strength of 5000 PSI (pounds per square inch) three days after pouring and 2000 PSI 28 days after pouring.
Can you epoxy interior floors?
No, don’t do it. I know it seems like a good idea, but trust me—no matter how much you might want to tear up that old linoleum or overpriced hardwood floor in the kitchen, don’t.
It’s not worth the hassle. Epoxy is best used for outdoor concrete surfaces right now unless you have a really good reason to use it indoors.
But if you really must apply epoxy to your concrete interior floors then here’s what you need to know: they’re a great option for interior floors because they’re easy to clean and maintain, a breeze to customize with your favorite colors and patterns (it’s super fun!), and they can last up to 10 years without issues.
The main caveat is that this kind of flooring works best on dense concrete, so if yours isn’t in great shape you might need some reinforcements before going full epoxy.
How do you install epoxy flooring in kitchen?
First, you need to choose a well-ventilated work area. The amount of ventilation you need depends on the type of epoxy coating and the size of your kitchen.
Once you’ve found a well-ventilated space, prepare your surfaces by cleaning the floor thoroughly and priming it. Next, apply the epoxy coating according to product instructions. Allow time for each layer to dry before applying additional layers.
Finish your project by applying a clear coat to help prevent scratches, then clean up your work area.
Epoxy flooring can seem intimidating if you are not familiar with its application process. However, with some preparation, an understanding of its qualities, and an appropriate epoxy product for your particular kitchen usage needs, it is possible for you to complete this project yourself within a few days’ time.
How well do epoxy floors hold up?
Epoxy flooring is unbelievably durable and, if applied properly and with the right sealing agents, can resist wear, tear, and staining really well.
While epoxy floors cannot resist all types of stains, they are resistant to most chemicals and spills (for example anti-freeze, brake fluid, oil, and gasoline) that are commonly found in commercial garages. They also protect against scratches from office chairs or moving heavy furniture around.
Epoxy floors are virtually seamless so dirt doesn’t get trapped in crevices as it does with tile or concrete floors. On top of that, because epoxy is completely nonporous it acts as a shield for your concrete floor underneath which protects it from water damage or cracking.
Are epoxy floors worth it?
Epoxy floors are easy to clean and maintain. In fact, due to their smooth surface, they’re much easier to clean than other types of flooring.
This is great if you want your kitchen floor to look nice at all times, but it can be dangerous if you have a hard time with your balance.
Epoxy floors can get slippery when wet, especially if they’re smooth like the ones in this picture. It’s important to consider whether they make sense for your situation before deciding on epoxy floors for your kitchen or any room in the house.
Is epoxy flooring cheaper than tile?
Epoxy flooring is definitely more cost-effective than traditional tile. There are several factors that go into this, the simplest of which is that epoxy flooring can be installed directly over your existing tile floor.
This saves you the cost of having to remove all the debris from your old tile and level any inconsistencies left behind. Also, because it’s so difficult to maintain, most kitchens will have at least one cracked or broken tile, or some other imperfection.
To redo a tiled kitchen floor in its entirety would mean you’d have to fix those problems first—adding significant labor costs.
As for materials: The epoxy itself is much cheaper than ceramic tiles, so even though you’ll need more of it (approximately 100 square feet per gallon), it still comes out as a better deal.
That said, if you’re going for durability alone, nothing beats good old ceramic tiles. But if you want a beautiful and shiny new surface that is both stylish and easy on your wallet, there’s no reason not to consider epoxy resin coating as an option.
What are the disadvantages of epoxy?
No, there are a few disadvantages to epoxy floors. For example, these floors are not a good choice for areas that have high levels of moisture or extreme temperatures.
They also aren’t great for areas with heavy foot traffic. So while you can use epoxy flooring in your kitchen, it’s probably best to stay on the safe side and use it in your basement instead.
Do epoxy floors scratch easily?
Epoxy floors are not easily scratched. In fact, they are very durable and can last for many years with proper care and maintenance. They are resistant to scratching and denting. Epoxy floors do not scratch easily because they are so strong.
Epoxy floors have a very high level of durability that makes them resistant to scratches and damage from impacts. Epoxy is a hard plastic that is used to create a thin coating on the floor surface.
The epoxy coating is extremely strong, making it difficult for anything to penetrate or break through it. The epoxy coating also protects against damage from impacts like dropping an item on the floor, which can cause dents in other types of flooring materials such as vinyl or wood.
All in all, whether or not you should epoxy your kitchen floor comes down to one simple question: Are you willing to deal with the drawbacks of epoxy? If so, then go for it. But if not, there are plenty of other options out there.
If you decide that yes, you want to epoxy your kitchen floor, then we recommend checking out our blog on how to prepare and install an epoxy coating on your concrete floor.