How to Paint a Concrete Floor

a shiny concrete floor next to stair railings with colorful angular shapes
  • 2-5 hours
  • Beginner
  • 100-200
What You'll Need
Plastic sheet
Tri sodium phosphate
Vacuum cleaner
Sponge mop
Scrub brushes
Warm water
Concrete patch
Concrete sealer
Paint roller
Paint roller trays
Paint brushes

Putting a fresh coat of paint on an old concrete floor can cover over stains and scuffs quite well. If you are planning on painting concrete floors then you must remember that concrete is naturally porous.

Step 1 - Remove Existing Paint

If you have a previously painted concrete floor then you will need to remove the existing paint. This can be done with a scraper. It is important to remove all of the old paint so it allows the new paint to settle in as well as not show through onto the new layer.

Step 2 - Patch Concrete

If the concrete floor has any nicks or cracks in it then you should apply a concrete patch to these locations. Concrete patch can be found in any home or hardware store.

Step 3 - Clean Floor

Use tri sodium chloride and warm water and a scrub brush to clean any grease stains on the floor. These can cause problems with the paint bonding to the surface so it is extremely important you remove all loose oil. Allow the floor to dry completely before continuing. The time needed for this will depend on the climate but 24 to 36 hours is average.

Step 4 - Tape Around

After you have cleaned the floor, make sure you line the area with tape. It is important to match the tape up to the floor to ensure it doesn’t make marks on the walls or baseboard.

Step 5 - Apply the Sealer

Poor some concrete sealer into a paint roller pan. Use a paint roller to apply the sealer over the entire area of concrete you are planning to paint. It is not necessary with many paints to apply a sealer but sealing the concrete will help to add an additional layer of protection from both the paint and future spills which could potentially stain the concrete.

When applying the sealer, move the roller in even, slow motions. Do not place a lot of sealer down. Excess sealer may bubble up and create problems. A thin coat of sealer is all that is necessary. Use a brush to get the outer perimeter and corners. Allow the sealer to dry for 24 to 36 hours before proceeding.

Step 6 - Priming the Floor

If the paint you are using to paint your concrete floor contains a primer then you can apply it directly. If it does not then you will need to apply a coat of primer. The primer can be added with a standard roller and brush. You should use smooth even motions and keep the layer thin but ensure it fully coats the floor. Allow the primer to dry for 24-36 hours.

Step 7 - Paint the Floor

Pour the paint into a roller pan. Use a roller and brush to paint the entire floor. Try to do it in smaller sections. When painting, make sure that the paint goes on thinly but covers completely. Do not attempt to finish the entire floor in one quote by putting a thick layer on. Allow the floor to dry and apply a second coat of paint and allow to dry for 24 hours.

Step 8 - Seal the Floor

After you add the second coat of paint you can add a top layer of sealant. This will help the paint to remain intact and make cleanups a lot easier.