How to Paint Concrete Walls and Floors

by TRP Ready Mix on November 10, 2017

How ready mix concrete can drastically change the look of your home.

Tips to Spruce up Your Home with Ready Mix Concrete and Paint

A fresh coat of paint can spruce up any part of your house, even on concrete. If the concrete in your basement, garage, or on your outdoor walls need refreshing, make any repairs first using ready mix concrete patches. Then follow these tips for painting coats that will last on concrete.

Note that the concrete should have a vapor barrier underneath, and should be at least 60 days old prior to painting. And if you decide to paint epoxy on a concrete floor, you will need to remove any concrete sealer first with chemical strippers and a grinder.

Choosing Your Paint

And making sure you buy enough so you don’t run out half-way through the job. Depending on the area you’re painting, choose:

  • Epoxy painting kits for concrete floors. You can also add: colour flakes to hide imperfections, and anti-skid granules for garage floors;
  • Outdoor concrete paint for outdoor walls; or,
  • Interior acrylic paint, or indoor concrete paint, for indoor basement walls.

Cleaning Its Surface

Before you start cleaning concrete surfaces, wear protective gear such as: safety goggles, gloves, a face mask, boots, and knee pads if you will be kneeling down to clean.

  • For outdoor surfaces, use a pressure washer to remove old paint and dirt.
  • For indoor walls and other painted surfaces, use a paint scraper and wire brush to remove old paint and dirt then scrub with soapy water or tri-sodium phosphate (TSP).
  • For concrete floors, especially in the garage, sweep and vacuum, and clean with TSP to remove any oil or grease.

If you notice mold or mildew growth on any of these surfaces, also clean with bleach or mildewcide to prevent further growth.

Make Necessary Repairs

Fill any cracks, dents, or blemishes on the surfaces with ready mix concrete patches. Use a trowel to fill the holes and smooth out the ready mix concrete. Once dried, sand down the patches.

Seal & Prime Concrete Walls

If you’re not sure whether your walls have a concrete sealer or not, tape a plastic sheet or a square of plastic wrap to the surface with all four sides taped and sealed well. Check back in 24 hours for moisture under the plastic. If it’s dry, the surface has a proper seal. If not, you will need to apply a concrete sealer prior to painting. Once the sealer has dried, apply a primer that works well with the masonry sealer.

Etch Concrete Floors

Prior to painting epoxy on concrete garage floors, you will need to follow the kit’s instructions to etch the concrete. This usually requires mixing the solution, dampening the floor with a hose, pouring the solution down, and then using a broom to scrub back and forth on one small area at a time. Once the entire floor has been etched, neutralize if needed (according to the kit’s instructions), and then thoroughly rinse with a hose. The floor must be completely dry before painting.

Painting with Epoxy

After the concrete floor has completely dried, mix the epoxy paint and hardener according to the kit’s instructions. Once properly mixed and ready to use, you will need to apply the paint quickly. Start with pouring some paint in a tray and using a paint brush to get the corners and edges. Pour the rest of the paint on the floor and use a paint roller with an extension handle to spread evenly. Start furthest away from the exit, and roll out one 10-by-10-foot section at a time. Allow to dry overnight before applying a top coat.

Painting with Interior Concrete or Acrylic Paint

Use a paint brush to paint around any windows, baseboards, trim, and corners. Then apply at least three thin layers of paint with a paint roller. Allow to dry for 24 hours. Finally, apply two coats of concrete paint sealer, allowing the first coat to dry completely before applying the second coat.

With a bit of work, ready mix concrete, and concrete paint, you can magically transform the concrete in your home.