Epoxy Floor Coating: What Surfaces are Safe to Epoxy Over?

epoxy floor coating

Epoxy floor coating is a great way to breathe new life into tired old surfaces that have seen better days. One of the keys to a successful epoxy floor coating is surface preparation, which can take time, but is critical to get a long-lasting finish. While some surfaces are easier to epoxy over, others are not, and its important to know what surfaces are safe to epoxy over before you start.

Epoxy floor coating over concrete

garage epoxy floor coating

Concrete is the ideal surface to apply an epoxy floor coating to. The age and condition of your concrete will determine how much preparation is required prior to coating it with epoxy; dirty, stained, damaged, cracked and uneven concrete will need to be scrubbed and levelled, as well as the top laitance (crust) removed with diamond grinding and tooling to give the concrete enough grip for the epoxy.

How concrete was poured and laid is also a critical aspect. Not all concrete is poured to a standard. This can have impactful affects to the coatings scenario. Without expensive equipment, it can be hard to tell what the concrete is like until the preparation (mostly grinding) takes place.

Areas where the concrete can be impacted include:

  1. Too much water added – ensures the concrete is workable and into place easier BUT when setting, the additional water help rise the ‘fines’ to the top. Essentially, this is not the concrete, more like the ‘waste’ that compromises the integrity of the concrete, which is possibly 4mm below
  2. Added accelerants or retarders – concreters can add various chemicals and agents into the mix when pouring. Sometimes the conditions will necessitate this. However, this can impact how the concrete accepts the resin

Applying an epoxy floor coating over concrete is a great way to create a good looking, durable and easy to maintain floor that will give your interior or exterior space the wow factor.

epoxy over concrete

Epoxy floor coating over tiles

Tiles can generally be covered by an epoxy floor coating to help rejuvenate an indoor or outdoor area, which can be a great option if your tiles are looking dated, tired or untidy. However, there are some cases where tiles cannot be overcoated, as epoxy can split if laid over tiles that are loose, drummy, or have too much movement.

Because the preparation for an epoxy floor coating over tiles may include diamond grinding (for example, when there are tiles with protruding edges), this can cause damage to the tiles or even shatter them. An option may be to remove the tiles, and then prepare the surface for epoxy, so consultation with an experienced epoxy flooring professional is recommended to determine whether your tiled area is safe to epoxy over.

Tiles always require a closer inspection before an agreement to overcoat can be entered into. Some may be drummy and if so, will need to be re-stuck or removed before coating.

Compressed Sheeting

There are various forms of sheeting out there that can also be coated over. Preparation is still the key. FC (Fibre Cement) sheeting is the most popular. Areas where this can apply is balconies and areas that are not at ground level.

Importantly, the spacing of the joists will help solidify the sheeting along with the thickness of the sheeting itself. The thickness of the sheeting will be, in part, determined by the type of traffic going over the area.

The gaps from the sheeting are infilled to further solidify the area, creating a rigidity that is now fit for purpose.

Find out whether your floor surface is safe to epoxy over

Overcoating your existing floor with an epoxy floor coating can really help revitalise an area, but there are different requirements and factors to consider based on the type of floor you have. It’s critical to have the surface carefully evaluated to determine how successful the coating will be, and what level of preparation would be required – and the potential risks present – to get a great finish.

Here at Tough Floors, we have the experience and technical know-how to give you the information you need to assess whether your floor is safe to epoxy over. Contact us today for reliable and trustworthy advice for your epoxy floor coating.

Avatar for Euan Bennett

About Euan Bennett

A self-confessed epoxy flooring nerd and dog lover, my great team and I just love transforming an ordinary floor into a thing of beauty with a carefully applied epoxy finish.