The Best Concrete Floor Coatings?

Q: I want to turn my basement into an office and gym. Unfortunately, I don’t have the money to refinish it with hardwood or tile. What type of concrete floor coatings are available, and which one would be best suited for this type of project?

A: There are a variety of products well-suited for this type of project. If you were only going to turn the basement into an office, a simple acrylic floor paint would work well. On the other hand, if you’re thinking of using part of the basement as a gym, paint may not be durable enough to endure dings from heavy weights. In this case, you could apply a durable epoxy coating. This type of finish is perfect for floors forced to endure a lot of abrasion, a big reason why people apply them to garage floors.

The only problem with both of the above indoor decorative concrete floor coatings is that you must employ specific preparation strategies to get them to stick. New finishes won’t adhere unless the floor is roughened with an acid etch. Typically, contractors use a muriatic acid etching solution for this task; however, this process is fraught with danger. There are some milder, citric-based solutions available; however, I’m not sure how effective they are.

If you don’t want to deal with all of the preparation hassles, you can apply an acid stain. Just be sure to seal the finish with a solvent-based poly, or you may ultimately end up with patches of fading.

Jim Dugan has over 20-years of experience as a professional contractor.



By Jim Dugan
Home Improvement Expert


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Best Pool Railing Paint?

Q: The rails around my pool are ugly and showing rust. I’ve searched but haven’t been able to find a finish specifically intended for these types of rails. What is the best pool railing paint, and where can I get it?

A: I don’t know of any finish specifically designed for this purpose; however, if you’re looking for a pool railing paint, you don’t have to go any further than your local home improvement or paint store. An enamel will work just fine for this, as long as it’s specifically formulated to resist the corrosive effects of chlorine.

If you’re planning to paint your actual swimming pool or the surrounding deck and walkway, you have to use a finish specifically made for this purpose, such as Deck Kote pool paint or a similar product that will hold up against chemicals and abrasion. This isn’t as critical on rails, which tend to support any sort of durable oil-based enamel.

Just remember, if the swimming pool rails are metallic and showing rust, you must seal the oxidation or it will make its way through the paint. Apply an iron-oxide primer before adding your first coat of pool railing paint. I’d also recommend scrubbing the rails with a degreasing cleanser to ensure that adhesion problems do not occur.

On the other hand, if the rails are wood, you can use an acrylic primer and a durable water-based acrylic pool paint.

Jim Dugan has over 20-years of experience as a professional contractor.



By Jim Dugan
Home Improvement Expert


Have Questions?
Chat with Jim Dugan Now!