Painting Floors Really Works Well

13 responses

  1. dan’s wife
    December 27, 2012

    We'd like to get the look of stained concrete over the solid-but-outdated linoleum tiles in our basement. Would need to cover the old floor with something that would obscure the fine lines between the tiles, and would like a nice coloring that permeates the material.. Ideas?

    • Tim Carter
      January 3, 2013

      Dan, you need to do a 15-Minute Consult with me. Look at my cart for that. There's lots to discuss. Pithy answers are all I do here.

  2. Ricardo Santos
    April 2, 2013

    Thanks for the tip

  3. Judith
    August 11, 2013

    Tim, almost all the advice I have seen everywhere says that you can't apply water-based paints over oil-based paints, yet here you propose just that - a water based polyurethane over oil-based floor paint. How does that work?

    • Tim Carter
      January 15, 2014

      Because the new resins are very strong glues.

  4. Wendy
    August 20, 2013

    Hi Tim,
    I live in the NW, and I have a home built in 1967. Probably by 1970, the garage (with a smooth concrete floor) was converted to a family room and unfinished storage area. I would like to put some sort of flooring in the family room. However, I believe there is a moisture problem and don't want to end up with mold growing under the carpet. What is the easiest way to deal with this? Here's the situation:

    The unheated storage area was slick, particularly nearest the east wall where the downspouts were (later, I put in French drains without weep holes) and I used a slurry-type sealant that worked pretty well. I didn't do an excellent job pre-cleaning or keeping the slurry wet until it cured properly. It worked okay, but small areas chipped off and you can see the dark (assumably moist) concrete below.

    The "family room" is inside and gets ambient heat from the adjoining living room in the winter. Part of the floor has linoleum tiles (that may have asbestos--color scheme/style suggests late 60's, early 70's), and part is exposed concrete-- of which a portion got painted 20 years ago and is still TACKY!

    Based on this, I am making an assumption that there is no vapor barrier beneath what was the garage floor, and that there is a moisture problem in the family room, just as there was in the storage area.

    To recap: I don't want to trap moisture under future flooring to create a mold problem, only have "evidence" of moisture (tacky paint) nearest the east wall, and worry about potential asbestos issues with the tile (from the halfway point to the west edge of concrete, where it meets the sill of what was the garage and steps up to the plywood floor of the house (with crawlspace below).

    Do I treat/seal the exposed and painted part of the concrete with some sort of concrete sealer (any recommendations?). I'm not sure how to prep the concrete (and how--- paint remover, giant sanding machine). Do I dare try to crack off the linoleum tiles or just leave them? Do I test for moisture somehow? Cover the whole thing up and pray it's a non-issue??

    I have had every sort of contractor out here, and they are mainly all clueless! The latest did concrete work, and suggested removing the concrete from just the part that seemed wet (before the asbestos), putting vapor barrier in that section and re-laying the concrete. I want to do the simplest, safest, cheapest thing to be able to lay flooring and actually use the room!!

    I will take any suggestions you have!
    thanks so much!

    • Tim Carter
      January 11, 2014

      This is too much to answer in one sentence. I created a phone consult product for situations like this. I'm sure you understand why!

  5. Kathy
    January 6, 2015

    Hi, We painted solid oak bedroom floors with one coat of primer and 2 coats of porch and floor paint last week. Then put in some stripes 2 days later. All paint is from Sherwin Williams and all the same kind. We want to poly the floor. Paint man says to use oil based poly and wait 14 days for paint to cure before applying poly. Then wait 3 days before moving in furniture. Your thoughts?

    House is kept at 65 degrees and we live in the desert.

    Thank you,

    • Tim Carter
      January 8, 2015

      I'd NEVER use oil poly..... Why not follow my instructions in the column?

  6. Julie C
    March 9, 2016

    Great column. Thank you. You mention using plastic-wood filler for depressions in floors. Do you think that would adhere to primed vinyl or could you recommend something similar for vinyl?

  7. Nikki
    June 13, 2016

    Hello, is the two to three days dry time before applying the urethane coating the same for water based paints - I'm using a Farrow and Ball floor paint

  8. Rebecca Carter
    August 18, 2016

    We painted our wood floor 2 coats with primer that was tinted and then two coats of porch paint both latex. Then two coats of water based minwax non ambering poly. It looks great except for whiting between some boards. do you have any idea what could cause this and what the solution is?

  9. Velvet
    September 5, 2016

    Had our living room floor level and stained.. The leveler was some type of thick paste..started looks like an old cracked side walk. Can I bust that out and use self leveler,,then paint it

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