Concrete paint UK

Applying an epoxy floor coating

Protective concrete paint increases surface durability

Concrete is a common material in building and construction. However, it also is a material which requires appropriate protection to be durable. There is a suitable concrete paint for every application, you just need to find it! We’ve made it easy for you.

Due to the multitude of different concrete paints, we gathered all necessary information in one read! Here we’ll take a look at the most common applications and suitable concrete coating products including:

  • Interior and exterior concrete wall coatings;
  • Indoor and outdoor wall coatings for concrete;
  • Concrete paint for driveways;
  • Concrete coatings for balcony floors.

The basics of interior and exterior concrete paint

Concrete is a porous material with high absorption; therefore the first coating layer on concrete should always be either a sealer or a primer. The first layer makes sure that no moisture is leaking through the concrete damaging the coating layers on it.  Using a sealer on interior walls additionally guarantees good quality air due to the fact that it prevents bacteria forming on the surface.

  • Primer to guarantee good adhesion
  • Sealer to keep moisture from ruining the coating system
  • Undercoat(s) to provide protection and colour attributes as well as to prepare the substrate for a finish
  • Topcoats(s) to provide the final protective paint layer and determine the looks regarding gloss and colour
  • Concrete paint sealer (not always required) to seal the complete coating system.

The following factors define the types of concrete coating products you should use:

  • Moisture levels (surface and ambient)
  • Temperature level and fluctuation
  • Other possible hazards; chemicals, contamination, abrasion etc.)

Domestic and industrial concrete floor coatings

When it comes to concrete floor paint, there are primarily two different types namely:

  1. Concrete epoxy coating
  2. Polyurethane concrete floor coating
A concrete floor coating applied in a commercial building

A recently applied concrete floor coating in an office building.

A concrete epoxy coating is usually a two component system which creates an extremely strong protective layer on concrete floors. Therefore, epoxy paint for concrete is a popular finish on factory floors (and walls), food processing work places as well as garage and parking lot floors. Epoxy paint for concrete dries fast and is therefore, common in commercial and public buildings, where the application should not disturb other activities. Note that an epoxy coating is not UV resistant; it is thus not suitable as exterior concrete coating without a protective layer. This could be a layer of polyurethane.

Polyurethane coating for concrete can be a one or two component system and it is known for its flexibility and seamless end result. These protective concrete coatings are common in schools, office buildings and apartments due to the fact that PU concrete paint has reasonable price and it is suitable for many applications.

Polyurethane coatings are less common in factory environments due to the fact that they have weaker mechanical abrasion and chemical resistance than concrete epoxy coatings.

However, the advantage of PU coating is that it is easy to apply and it has often a self levelling effect making it an ideal exterior concrete paint. The latter also exists for epoxies in self smoothing epoxy coating.

Floor coating products

BRANDPRODUCTPRICE (RRP)PACKAGINGCOVERAGE
Rust-Oleum5200 Epoxyshield Ultra; industrial concrete floor coating for light to medium duty£55.005 L9 sq m / L
TeamacFast drying industrial floor paint£35.005 L13 – 15 sq m / L
Rawlins paints302 Epoxy Ester Floor paint£50.005 L 10 sq m / L
Blackfriar Polyurethane Floor Paint with resistant to oil and grease; internal and external concrete floor paint.£15.00 1 L12 – 14 sq m / L

Applying concrete floor coatings in industrial and commercial areas is often done by a floor coating contractor. The experts naturally have proper equipment and sufficient knowledge on application on larger surfaces. If you are searching for a suitable coating or a contractor to apply it, our coating experts are eager to further help you!

Applying floor coatings on concrete at home can easily be done by a non-professional. The trick is to study the manufacturer’s application guide and product information and follow the instructions.

If you do not have a concrete floor but would still like a concrete-look on you floor, you can always use concrete effect paint. It is available in the UK in many online shops as well as in hardware and home decoration shops. The concrete effect paint makes any surface look like concrete.

Protect balconies and driveways with exterior concrete coatings

Balconies and driveways can also benefit from concrete paints. Exterior floor paint for concrete can namely protect also those surfaces.

Balconies for example are continuously subject to weathering, and if no sufficient protective concrete paint is applied, they deteriorate fast, which may even lead to safety issues. The most important characteristics of balcony coatings are:

  • Water resistance; being waterproof
  • Resistance to light mechanical abrasion

Driveways for their part require heavy duty coatings due to the amount of vehicle traffic on the surface. They additionally, must be resistant to oils and grease.

BRANDPRODUCTPRICE (RRP)PACKAGINGCOVERAGE
 WatcoBalcony Coating, a waterproof exterior concrete coating for balconies and walkways£150.0025 Kg 12.5 sq m /25 Kg
FlagHeavy duty Elastomeric Floor Coating suitable for painting  driveways£40.005 L

Also some of the Teamac industrial floor paints are applicable on driveways and patios.

Paints for concrete walls in interiors and exteriors

Concrete is a challenging substrate to paint not only due to its porousity but also due to the fact that it expands and contracts as a result of temperature fluctuation. Therefore, choosing the right concrete paint is crucial; it must live with the surface to prevent peeling and cracking of the coating on vertical surfaces. When coating exterior concrete walls, an elastomeric masonry paint is a suitable option; interior concrete walls in turn, are best coated with an acrylic wall coating.

However, industrial wall coatings are usually epoxy paints due to the fact that they are easy to clean, chemical and abrasion resistant as well as extremely durable and somewhat immune to impact.

BRANDPRODUCTPRICE (RRP)PACKAGINGCOVERAGE
Rust-OleumCombi Color Multi Surface Paint, an interior and exterior wall coating; primer and topcoat in one system!£15.00750 ml9 – 10 sq m / L
ZinsserAllcoat exterior gloss; exterior concrete wall paint; a self priming concrete coating system to protect concrete walls from fungi£20.001 L8- 12 sq m/ L
DuluxDulux Endurance+ Matt, interior concrete wall paint*£10.501 L 13 sq m/ L
BEDEC Superflex Elastomeric roof and exterior wall coating£35.00 2.5 L2 sq m / L
Sika Wallcoat N coloured interior concrete wall coating£260.00 20 Kg 3.5 – 6.5 sq m / Kg

*Most of these interior concrete wall coatings are also suitable for ceilings.

For commercial applications we advise to do thorough research on the coatings to guarantee the best combination of properties. For example the F&B industry requires bacteria free coatings.; there for example the Sika wall coatings offer solution for these purposes. Also online!

Painting interior concrete walls at home

As painting interior walls is one of the most common do-it-yourself coating projects, we’ll provide you with the basic steps to guide you through the surface preparation and coating application.

Concrete coating can from Rust-Oleum with water besed PU concrete paint.

Rust-Oleum provides a wide range of concrete coating products.

product picture crommelin concrete floor sealer

Crommelin sealers; concrete floor sealer

Follow these 7 easy steps, and you’ll get there!

    1. Clean the interior concrete wall using soapy water and a scrub brush.
    2. Repair any damage on the wall with a concrete patch. Fill holes and cracks and use a trowel to smoothen the surface.
    3. Control the moisture level of the concrete by taping a plastic sheeting onto the wall (as air tight as possible) and check the plastic after 24 hours. The wall requires a sealer if any moisture appears on the plastic. In case of no moisture, the wall is already sealed and you can move to step 5.
    4. Seal the wall with a concrete sealer of your choice; one coat is usually sufficient. Let the surface dry overnight.
    5. Prime the surface applying concrete primer. Make sure to spread the primer evenly. Often one layer is enough, however, if you can still see the wall underneath, apply another layer.  
    6. Apply the concrete wall paint. Most products require application in minimum of 3 coats. Let the paint sufficiently dry between coats and 24 hours after the last one.
    7. Depending on the concrete coating, apply a concrete paint sealer. The sealer contributes to better adhesion and longer lifetime.

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