Ultimate Guide To Garage Flooring

Ultimate Guide To Garage Flooring

Your garage floors have to go through a lot every day.

What with hot car wheels going over them and chemicals being spilled on them, they need to be really strong and durable, which is why choosing the correct garage floor is of the utmost importance. 

Can’t you just have a concrete garage floor?

Many garage floors are concrete and this has many benefits, such as durability and the capacity for heavy loads. 

However, there are many other garage flooring options that you should consider, taking into account what you’ll be using your garage for as well as what your flooring requirements are.

For example, if you need the garage floor to be able to withstand hot car tires or lots of traffic. Here’s a rundown of the most popular types of garage flooring so you can make the best choice. 

Garage Flooring Options 

What are the best garage flooring options to consider for your home, and what do they offer?

What are their potential drawbacks?

It helps to know these before you go ahead and install a garage floor or apply a floor coating. So, let’s look at the most common types of garage floor options as well as their pros and cons. 

Rubber Mats

RUBBER MATS

Pros

  • Rubber mats are easy to install. Anyone can do it and you don’t require lots of skill or experience. 
  • They can protect your concrete garage floor by preventing oil, stains, chemicals, and water from seeping into it. 
  • Once installed, rubber mats are easy to clean and maintain. 
  • They don’t cost a lot.

Cons 

  • Since they’re made of rubber, they could become damaged by chemicals, such as petroleum products. This is something to bear in mind if you’re going to be working with chemicals in your garage. 

Garage Floor Tiles

GARAGE FLOOR TILES

Two popular types of garage floor tiles are vinyl tiles and interlocking plastic tiles. 

Vinyl Tiles 

Pros

  • They come in a variety of colors and styles. 
  • Vinyl is very durable, thus it won’t crack or peel easily. It’s also waterproof. 
  • It won’t become damaged by various chemicals that you use in your garage workshop. 
  • It’s slip-resistant and comfortable. 

Cons 

  • Vinyl floor tiles can be costly if you’re using them in a large space. 
  • It takes time and effort to install them.

Interlocking Tiles 

Pros

  • These are quick and easy to install on your garage floor. 
  • They are interlocking so you don’t have to worry about using adhesives when applying them. 

Cons 

  • They are more expensive to purchase as compared to other types of garage flooring options, such as staining or painting your concrete floor. 

Garage Flooring Rolls

GARAGE FLOORING ROLLS

Pros 

  • They’re really easy to install as they don’t need to have adhesive applied. 
  • They’re great for beginners. If you find that you don’t achieve the best fit with them, you can simply cut the roll with a knife. 
  • This type of garage flooring is easy to clean, which makes maintaining it a breeze. 

Cons

  • Since they’re made of vinyl and rubber, these rolls can be slippery when wet. 
  • They can shrink or tear – you’re looking at a lifespan of approximately five years. This makes them less than ideal for high-traffic garages. 

Concrete With Coating

CONCRETE WITH COATING

If you’re giving your garage a bit of a makeover but you want to leave the existing concrete floor, you might consider coating your concrete floor with a stain or perhaps an epoxy coating. Here are the pros and cons of each. 

Concrete Stain

Pros 

  • This product colors your concrete floor in a translucent way and dries quickly. 
  • You can get concrete stain in a range of colors and visual effects, such as marbling. 
  • You can apply it to the floor before the concrete is polished to give you a beautiful glossy finish. 

Cons 

  • Concrete stain doesn’t protect the concrete floor, so if the concrete is old and damaged this will show through the stain.
  • If you’re choosing an acid-based concrete stain, this is potentially dangerous to work with. You need to wear protective clothing, such as masks and eye goggles.
  • Since it dries quickly, you need to work quickly to get it the way you want it before it sets permanently. 

Epoxy Coating 

Pros 

  • Epoxy coating provides a smooth surface that looks good and is easy to clean. 
  • This type of flooring is resistant to a variety of contaminants, such as bleach, gasoline, and oil, which makes it ideal for use in the garage.
  • When applied correctly, epoxy coatings can last for decades, which is much longer than other types of garage floor coatings. 

Cons

  • Epoxy floors can be slippery when wet, so that’s something to bear in mind.

Carpet For Garage Floor

CARPET FOR GARAGE FLOOR

Pros 

  • Having a carpet in your garage can make it feel cozier. 
  • It adds a decorative touch to your garage, so it’s perfect for when you want to create a stylish man cave
  • It can be more comfortable if you’re working on it, such as if you need to work on your knees when fixing your car.
  • It provides insulation during the cold months. 

Cons 

  • Carpets can experience wear and tear very quickly, due to the volume of traffic or if you’re driving over them with your car on a regular basis. 
  • You can’t just use any carpet in the garage. It has to meet certain requirements, such as that it needs to be marked as safe for automatic use. It should also be made of polypropylene. This is resistant to mildew, mold, and fire
  • It can be difficult to clean if it gets wet or saturated with chemicals. 

How To Choose The Best Garage Flooring Option

How To Choose The Best Garage Flooring Option

When you want to put down a new garage floor, you might wonder which type is best suited to you.

We’ve looked at the pros and cons of some popular types of garage flooring, but it’s also important to consider what you’ll be using the garage for so that you ensure you choose the best type of floor for it. 

Man Cave Flooring 

If your garage is going to be your man cave, you want to ensure that the floor is up to speed with its purpose. If you’re going to be using your man cave to enjoy socializing with your buddies or watching sports on a big screen, a carpeted floor can be a good idea.

This makes the space a bit homelier, plus it’s easy to clean up food crumbs – simply grab the vacuum cleaner and you’ll be done in a few minutes. 

If carpets aren’t really your thing, you could consider vinyl as an alternative. It’s strong, durable, can handle a lot of traffic, and looks good. 

Garage Workshop Flooring 

If you want to spend less time socializing in your garage and more time working on your DIY projects, you’re going to need to ensure you lay down flooring that can handle anything you throw at it.

This is why it’s a good idea to forget about rubber flooring and choose something like vinyl because it’s resistant to chemicals and also skid-resistant. 

Another type of flooring to avoid if your garage is going to be your workshop is carpet. This soft material makes it difficult for you to drag your tool boxes across it, and the last thing you need is to have to try to get rid of oil or gas stains on it. 

Car Storage Flooring 

If your garage is simply the place where you park your car and possibly do repairs on it, then you’re going to need to ensure that you have flooring that is car-friendly. You want to avoid garage flooring that won’t be able to handle traffic or hot wheels.

“Hot tire pickup” is when some of your flooring gets stuck on the hot wheels of your car when you park it in your garage.

Make sure you have flooring that won’t cause this to happen, and your best choices for this are garage floor mats and epoxy coatings, as long as they’re made with quality in mind. 

You should also consider getting a garage floor that will be comfortable for you to use when working on your car or being on your feet all day, such as  carpet tiles or flexible plastic tiles. 

Finally, your garage floor needs to be able to handle dealing with heavy weight and spills, such as oil and grease. Again, epoxy and rigid plastic tiles are useful in this regard.

General Storage Flooring

You want to be able to move items across the floor with ease, so avoiding carpets can be useful if your garage is going to mainly be storage space in the home.

Vinyl flooring is a good option to ensure that you don’t damage your floor with heavy weight. Scratch-resistant flooring is also a good idea, and epoxy coatings are highly resistant to scratches and peeling. 

What About Making Use Of Your Current Concrete Flooring?

What About Making Use Of Your Current Concrete Flooring?

Concrete flooring is a strong and durable option to have in your garage, as it’s resistant to stains and moisture. It’s also suitable for high temperatures, which is what can occur in your garage.

That said, you need to ensure that you protect your concrete floors, and that means applying a sealant. This will ensure that the concrete floor’s lifespan will be increased.

The beauty about a concrete floor is that it’s pretty versatile. You can apply various coatings to it, such as in the form of concrete paint and stain. You can also add epoxy coatings to your concrete floor to make it more durable and provide it with shine as well as color. 

However, it’s important to bear in mind that if your garage concrete floor is very old and worn, it will probably have more imperfections (such as in the form of cracks or stains), and this means it will need to be treated more intensively before you can go ahead and paint or stain it.

This will take a bit more work and the use of more products, such as stain removals or degreasers. 

Do You Need Skills To Install Your Own Garage Floor?

Do You Need Skills To Install Your Own Garage Floor?

If you’re interested in doing your garage floors yourself, you might wonder if you’ll be able to. How much skill and effort you will need really depends on the type of garage flooring you want to install. 

If you choose to install garage floor mats or interlocking floor tiles, these are really easy to install and you won’t require any special expertise. The same goes for if you want to add paint or sealer to your concrete floor to liven it up.

However, if you want to apply stain to your concrete floor, it’s worth knowing that a water-based stain will be easier to apply than an acid-based stain. The latter requires you to handle muriatic acid and wear protective clothing during its application. 

As for epoxy floor coatings, which are really popular, they are a little more difficult to apply but that doesn’t mean it’s impossible to do so. You will need to prep the garage floor well and you’ll need to mix the epoxy before applying it.  

When it comes to vinyl flooring, the process is a little tricky because you have to ensure that the surface of the floor beneath the vinyl is completely smooth and even otherwise you’ll get bubbles in the vinyl.

Just make sure that you don’t need an adhesive. Heavy-duty vinyl flooring won’t need adhesive because it’s kept down by its own weight, so it’s much easier to apply.

Lighter vinyl products will require adhesive, especially around the edges, while extremely light vinyl will need large amounts of adhesive all over. 

Should You Call A Professional For Your Garage Floor Installation?

Should You Call A Professional For Your Garage Floor Installation?

It’s good to know if you should call a professional to help you do your garage floor installation, preferably before you give it a try and encounter problems. Here are situations in which it’s better to call a pro. 

Your floor is really old or damaged

If you’re applying a floor coating to concrete, you need to ensure that the concrete is perfectly clean and free of issues such as cracks or chips.

Otherwise, the money you save by doing the garage floor installation yourself will be lost because you’ll have to spend more money to do it again or call a professional. If you’re worried about the state of your floor, then proceed with caution and call a pro. 

You’re a total beginner

You want to ensure that your garage flooring is going to have a smooth and even application, but this isn’t always easy to do if you’re applying floor coatings or installing flooring for the first time.

For example, as mentioned earlier, vinyl requires you to lay it down perfectly to prevent bubbles but this might not be easy to do if you’re working on your own.

You want detailed, patterned results

When it comes to applying concrete floor stains, you might want the final result to be very patterned and detailed.

This isn’t always possible if you’re doing it yourself and are inexperienced, so it’s best to call someone who’s done tons of these floor applications before and can demonstrate their skill. 

You don’t have the equipment you need

For some floor coatings, you need to have the right equipment and tools on hand. For example, acid-based concrete stains require you to use acid-resistant brushes as well as spray equipment.

If you go ahead and use rollers to apply stain to your concrete, you could end up with uneven results or streaks in the stain finish. 

Related Questions 

What’s the best flooring option for a home gym? 

If you’re turning your garage into a home gym, materials such as carpet, vinyl, and rubber are good choices – the latter’s particularly durable and easy to clean. 

How much does a concrete floor cost? 

If you want to install a concrete floor in your garage, you can expect to pay about $500 to $650 for the size of a two-car garage (via Hunker).

Conclusion 

Your garage floor will help you to be able to make the most of your garage, so you need to ensure that it’s strong, durable, and has a long lifespan.

After reading this article, you now know the best garage floor options to choose from so that installing it will be easy and fuss-free – and last you a long time.

Of course, there’s always the option to call a professional to help you with your garage floor installation, and we’ve outlined times when it’s best to do so. 

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