Transforming Your Garage Floor: Swisstrax Vs. Epoxy Paint
If you’re like us, you spend an inordinate amount of time in your garage working on vehicles and other assorted projects. Everything has its place in the garage including tools, jack stands, parts, and engine parts. Just like you, we take pride in keeping our garage workspace clean and organized.
Many times, the flooring is overlocked. Swisstrax is a popular modular flooring system installed in lieu of more standard options such as epoxy floor paint. Swisstrax is showcased prevalently at tradeshows, racetracks, and car auctions, but it didn’t occur to us it would be a good option for use in a garage or workshop. After some investigative work, it seems like a much better option than simply painting the concrete, but let’s explore the details.
Swisstrax VS. Epoxy
Swisstrax flooring system is incredibly simple to install. The modular floor system simply clicks into place, so there’s no need to prep the garage or move everything out completely. You can shift your garage items as needed while finishing your Swisstrax flooring. After placing the panels, you can immediately move the items back because there is zero drying time, saving you serious time and labor. Epoxy, on the other hand, is a much more involved process.
< The Swisstrax modular floor system simply clicks into place. There’s no need to prep the garage or move everything out completely.
With epoxy, you need to remove everything from your garage. After that, it is necessary to clean and prep the concrete, sometimes with harsh chemicals. The garage floor must be allowed to completely dry which may take overnight. Some epoxy products require an adhesion promoter, while others do not. Your concrete floor should be checked for sealant, unbonded paint, moisture, damaged or poorly cured concrete, and concrete dust before application. Any of these conditions could cause the epoxy not to adhere correctly, creating a less than ideal appearance and premature failure of the product.
In addition to extensive floor preparation, your garage atmosphere should be verified for air and floor temperature within the manufacturers’ recommended ranges before starting. For example, Rust-Oleum’s Epoxyshield needs an air temperature between 60 and 85 degrees with the floor being a minimum of 55-degrees Fahrenheit. If it’s too cold, it will not adhere correctly. Excessive heat can cause problems as well, giving you less time to work with the product to achieve a smooth finish.
With the conditions right and a perfectly prepped floor, the next step is to mix and roll on the epoxy. After the surface is covered, it should be ready for light foot traffic in 12-16 hours. Don’t forget, all of your garage treasures and vehicles have been in the driveway for the whole epoxy process. You can move them back into the garage in approximately 24 to 48 hours.
Durability And Warranty
The entire line of Swisstrax products are impact-resistant, protecting your floor from damage and some will shield the floor from chemicals and spills, unlike epoxy. Swisstrax tiles are also low maintenance, and with the help of a pressure washer will look great for years to come. Swisstrax includes a 30-day money-back guarantee and either a lifetime limited or 7-15 year warranty.
^ Here’s a before and after shot showing you what a big difference the Swisstrax flooring can make.
Epoxy paint is a thin coating that offers protection against some automotive fluids and chemicals. If something heavy is dropped on it, the epoxy will get damaged along with the floor. This can lead to costly repairs and time to restore the floor back to its original condition. Epoxy coatings only come with a warranty if it is professionally installed. While most installers will cover the coating for 2 to 3 years maximum, it drives up the cost significantly.
One of our favorite things about Swisstrax is the wide variety of products from which to choose. With different styles and colors, you can personalize your space to your liking. Swisstrax even offers a virtual floor designer that allows you to see exactly how it will look before purchasing.
The Bottom Line
If your budget is minimal, and you are confident you can install the product yourself, then epoxy may be the route for you. However, if you’re looking for something that is considerably more durable, easy to install, and long-lasting, Swisstrax is the unbeatable option.
By BRIAN HAVINS: OCTOBER 21, 2020