What Paint to Use When Painting Concrete

Many times concrete must be painted, especially for a concrete porch. There is not one paint to use as you can use epoxy, latex, or oil based paints. Each has their pros and cons when used or painting concrete.

Here are some pros and cons for each type of paint when painting concrete.

* Latex Paint – Latex paint, water based, is the paint that will be the least expensive to buy. It is also the easiest type of paint to apply to concrete. But the paint is also not as durable as the other two types of paint. The reason for this is that latex paint breathes, as it will let moisture pass through the paint. Latex paint is a good option for you if the concrete is new. You can choose a latex based paint that is especially for painting concrete. When painting concrete with latex paint you should apply two coats in order to get maximum coverage.

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Oil based Paint – Oil based paint will give the concrete a harder finish than latex paint, therefore it is more durable of a paint on concrete. The cost is about the same as latex paint but when cleaning up the paint you will also need to purchase mineral spirits. You can start by applying an oil based primer that is especially made for concrete. This primer will bond with the concrete and also fill in some of the small pores. By applying the primer it will give a good base application for when you apply the final coat of oil based paint to the concrete. Make sure that you choose an oil based paint that is especially made for concrete coverage.

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Epoxy – Epoxy is the best paint to use on concrete in terms of durability as it will be a harder paint. Epoxy paints will come in two different cans having a different makeup with each, as the cans have to be mixed together before application. Epoxy paint will bond very well to the concrete when applied. Generally epoxy paint costs twice as much as the other types of paint. Epoxy paint has to have good ventilation in order to bond well and is the hardest of the three paints to apply and clean up. It may be a good option to buy a roller cover and brush that you can simply throw away after you apply the paint to the concrete in order to avoid the messy cleanup. Considering that epoxy paint is hard and shiny it may be slippery as well. You should discuss with a paint dealer about various additives that will make the paint less slippery, such as non-skid additives. This is especially the case if the concrete porch will be exposed to a lot of moisture.

It does not matter the type of paint you choose you still have to prepare the concrete for the paint. The concrete has to be dry, clean, and not have any peeling or loose paint. If it is the case that the concrete has been sealed before there will also be some other steps for preparation that you should take.

Author: Jason Green