How to Clean an Epoxy Floor

You are considering new epoxy flooring for your home in Naples, Florida and you are wondering what type of maintenance you can expect after installation. Or perhaps you already had your epoxy flooring installed and you’re wondering how to keep it looking like new. You have heard that epoxy is durable and easy to clean, but you’re not quite sure which cleaning products work best, and which ones could be potentially harmful. We hear these types of concerns from our customers on a daily basis and at Top Gun Garage, we are committed to being an educational resource for you. We are going to address the following in this article: routine cleaning and maintenance, spot treatment for specific spills, and recommendations for cleaning agents and tools that you can use to keep your epoxy floor in pristine condition. Side note: this refers to the cleaning and maintenance of professionally installed, commercial-grade epoxy flooring, not the garage floor kits that are found in big box stores. Those are water-based and can be damaged by some of these cleaning methods. More on box store epoxy kits here.

Routine Cleaning

We recommend keeping the surface of the epoxy flooring free of dirt and debris as much as possible. Not so much that it will damage your floor, but because loose dirt can then be tracked inside of your house and, in the right circumstances, can pose a slip hazard. The easiest way to do this is with an electric leaf blower. The reason we recommend electric is that gas-powered blowers operated inside of an enclosed space can create a carbon monoxide hazard. We recommend checking out a cordless option available at your local hardware store by clicking here. If you’re after more of a manual option, we recommend a soft-bristled push broom like the one found here. Now that you have removed all of the loose debris, and you’re ready to really make your epoxy floor shine, we recommend using a damp mop with plain water or a 1:10 concentration of ammonia and water. That’s it. For an epoxy surface that isn’t heavily soiled this should be all you need.

Heavily Soiled Cleaning

So it’s been a while and your epoxy flooring is heavily soiled. Maybe it’s rainy season here in Naples, FL and you’ve been driving your car in and out of the garage and now you have tire tracks. Not to worry, just a few steps and your floor will be good as new. Start with the removal of loose dirt using your trusty new cordless leaf blower or soft-bristled broom. Then, with a garden hose simply rinse your entire floor. This method requires you to remove anything in contact with your epoxy floor that could be damaged by water. After the entire floor is rinsed, a solution of 1 tablespoon (seriously, no more than 1 tablespoon) of dish soap to 5 gallons of water can be scrubbed with a soft-bristled brush paying special attention to the high-traffic areas. After all the dirt and grime have been loosened, it’s time to rinse until there are no more suds on the floor. It is important to completely rinse your epoxy flooring to prevent a soap residue that could become slippery if it gets wet. At this point, you can allow your floor to air dry. If you’re like me, you won’t want to wait for your floor to dry so you’re going to opt to squeegee with a soft squeegee like this one and finally dry mop with a regular string mop. And you’re done. Not so bad right? This is something that, in most cases, only needs to be done about once a year tops.

Now, how about some specific spills?

Oil Stains

So your lawnmower or Harley drips a little bit of oil? No problem. Just wipe up with a damp cloth as soon as you are able. For heavy oil spills, Simple Green or Dish soap are also safe options but make sure you aren’t leaving behind any soap residue. In most cases, you won’t need any cleaning agents so don’t jump the gun getting the chemicals involved.

Gasoline

First, remove any sources of ignition and ensure proper ventilation. Wipe up with a shop towel and rinse with water.

Paint

Acrylic and Latex Based Paints: clean with water and a clean shop towel.
Solvent-Based Paint: clean with denatured alcohol.
Oil-Based Paint: clean with mineral spirits

Battery Acid

This is one of the few things that can actually damage your epoxy floor. Wear the proper personal protective equipment prior to attempting to clean battery acid (rubber gloves and eye protection). Clean up as soon as possible. Use baking soda to neutralize the acid and then wipe up with disposable towels. Rinse with clean water once acid is removed. We recommend anyone who has a golf cart use a rubber mat underneath the cart while charging like this one.

Tire Marks or Shoe Scuffs

Usually, these are easily removed with a clean towel and water so try that first. If water doesn’t work, try premixed Simple Green that comes in the spray bottle. The last resort is a Magic Eraser with a little bit of plain water. Scrub vigorously until the stain is gone and then wipe clean with a dry towel.

Rust Stains

Again, try removing it with a clean towel and water before moving on to the next step. It is surprising how stain-resistant epoxy flooring can be. If that is ineffective, a 1:1 ratio of CLR and water should do the trick. Apply the diluted CLR directly to the rust stain and allow it to soak for 10 minutes. Then, scrub with a soft-bristled brush and rinse with water.

Can I pressure wash an epoxy garage floor?

Although it is not necessary, a pressure washer with a surface cleaner attachment is safe to use on an epoxy floor.

As always, thanks for taking the time to read this article. We hope it added value and solved the mystery of caring for your epoxy floor. We want to answer your questions. Feel free to reach out using the button below and have a chance to have your question featured in our next article.

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