– Maintaining Epoxy Flooring –
I’ve had my garage coated with epoxy for more than nine years. Given the appearance, I get asked about how much time and energy I put into my garage coating’s maintenance. The answer is, not that much, really. I mop the epoxy flooring two or three times each year. Occasionally, I vacuum up debris with the shop vac, but everything else is just spot cleaning. It’s not much work to have a floor that is visually attractive and welcomes guests. Compare that to most other garages that have stains, concrete wear, dusting and other issues. You get the picture.
Whether you have professional epoxy coatings for your garage, basement, porch, sunroom or pole barn, the maintenance and usage tips are usually the same. A couple items below may only pertain to harder use applications:
1. For minor spills or vehicle drippings, simply wipe them up with a paper towel or other soft cloth.
2. Routine maintenance cleaning is best achieved with either a soft bristle broom or a blue commercial dust mop (available at any home improvement store).
3. For heavy cleaning of a soiled epoxy floor, sweep away any loose debris and then mop floor with a hard foam mop, hot water and clear ammonia. Four to five ounces of ammonia per gallon of water is all that is needed to adequately remove soiling.
4. Some winter road “pre-treatment” compounds leave a hazy film on epoxy floor coatings after cleaning. This can normally be removed with hot water and a deck brush (found at most hardware stores). Continuous rinsing may be required to keep the compounds from drying onto new areas of the floor.
5. Some stains (including rust) may require light scrubbing with a kitchen scrubbing pad. If you’re unable to remove with just hot water, we recommend using Soft Scrub. Do not use Comet or other abrasive cleaning chemicals on the coatings.
6. If desired, the epoxy floor can be hosed out and squeegeed dry.
7. Do not use any cleaner that contains acids (citrus cleaners or vinegar) or soap-based cleaners. Soap based cleaners leave a residue on epoxy flooring that not only detracts from the shine, but also become increasingly slippery should the floor get wet.
8. Use a walk-off mat (welcome mat) inside any entry door to assist removal of snow and water from the bottoms of shoes when entering the garage. Longer mats may be required during winter weather.
9. Place a computer mouse pad under a motorcycle kickstand to prevent damage to the coatings surface.
10. Ensure all areas are clean before lifting heavy loads with rolling jacks.
11. Place pieces of half-inch plywood under jack stands when bearing heavy loads.
12. Use a welding mat when welding above epoxy coatings.
I should stress that if you frequently mop your floors, like many of our customers do, you may build up a soapy residue that dulls the appearance of the floor coatings. This can normally be stripped off by following the third tip above.
We get several calls per year from our showroom customers where they state the coatings dulled. To date, every instance has been nothing more than residue build-up from the cleaning method they were using.
While professional epoxy coatings are very durable, they are not indestructible. If damage does occur, contact the installation company to get assistance with how to repair any suspected damage.