Epoxy rock flooring combines the beauty of natural stone with the durability and low maintenance needs of epoxy resin. While installing this flooring yourself can save you money, a poor installation can ruin your results and leave you shelling out big bucks for help from a professional. Maximize your chance of a successful epoxy rock floor installation by taking the time to properly prepare the subfloor and following all manufacturer's instructions provided with your new floor covering.
Use acid etching, shot blasting or diamond grinding to roughen the surface of a concrete subfloor. Properly prepared concrete has a texture similar to 30-grit to 50-grit sandpaper.
Cover existing wood floors with exterior grade plywood. Use 1/2 inch plywood over sound floor finishes, leaving the existing finish intact, or remove the floor covering and cover the subfloor with 3/4 inch plywood.
Fill all cracks, holes and joints in wood or concrete floors with an epoxy filler. Check the instructions on your epoxy rock flooring products to determine which filler to use.
Prime the floor. Not all epoxy rock flooring products require priming. Generally, priming is required if concrete is freshly poured or has a high moisture content. Wood floors typically require priming to allow the epoxy to successfully bond to the subfloor. Check the installation instructions on your epoxy flooring product to determine whether to apply primer. Apply primer using a standard paint roller and allow to dry before proceeding.
Apply Epoxy Rock Flooring
Mix the epoxy and hardener together in a large bucket according to the instructions on the package. Only mix as much epoxy as you can apply in about 20 minutes.
Add the rocks or pebbles to your epoxy mixture. Stir these components using a shovel in a large bucket or wheelbarrow, or use a cement mixer for thorough mixing. Check the instructions on the epoxy to determine the proper ratio of rocks to epoxy. Westcoat suggests using 200 pounds of rock per 1-1/2 gallons of epoxy mixture.
Pour out the epoxy rock mixture over the floor. Use a rake to spread the mixture evenly across the surface.
Level the flooring using a 14-by-4 inch concrete trowel so that the mixture measures 3/8 to 1/2 inch thick, or 3 to 4 pebbles thick. Smooth the surface using your trowel as you work your way across the floor.
Broadcast 30 silica sand over the floor by hand as desired to add traction and prevent the finished floor from being too slippery.
Wait for the epoxy to dry, and then apply a topcoat using a 3/4 nap roller. Allow this topcoat to dry completely before walking on the floor.