How Much Does It Cost to Epoxy a Basement Floor?
Epoxy basement floor cost averages $7.15 per square foot when professionally installed. That’s about $7,000 for a 1,000 sq/ft basement.
In a Hurry?
A wide range of cost factors, detailed below, including DIY vs pro application produces a potential epoxy floor cost of $3.35 to $12.50 per square foot. Click here to go directly to our cost table to see how these estimates break down.
January 26, 2023, by: Rob Parsell
This page is about applying a 2-part epoxy coating to concrete basement floors, the costs involved and the factors that affect these costs. We also offer some recommendations on how to get the best price for your project. If you need something stronger than a basement floor sealer then epoxy is probably the way to go.
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ABOUT BASEMENT EPOXY FLOORS
Very few surfaces give you as tough and durable a floor as epoxy, especially for about $7.00 per square foot – less if you DIY.
Standard application starts with cleaning dirt, grease and other contaminants from the floor. Of course if you need to remove tile from your concrete floor, or any other flooring, then you should do that first. Cracks are filled and sanded smooth. Then the surface is etched with acid to improve adhesion before applying one coat of epoxy. A clear topcoat is often added for stain-fighting and wear protection.
EPOXY PAINT VS EPOXY COATING
Another way to put this is to say 1-part epoxy vs 2-part epoxy. Paint is a 1-part product consisting of about 50% epoxy and 50% solvent pre-mixed and sold in a can ready to apply. Epoxy paint wears fairly quickly under heavy foot traffic, equipment dragged across it and other normal wear-and-tear situations.
Epoxy for basement floors is a two-part coating. Tinted resin and a hardener come in a kit unmixed. Both are considered solids, not liquids. When you’re ready to coat the floor, the resin and hardener are combined. Some products suggest letting the epoxy mix sit for up to 30 minutes to allow the hardener to begin working.
The result is a 100% solid epoxy floor. The epoxy basement floor cures in about 24 hours, rather than drying like paint.
As mentioned above, this page is about 2-part epoxy floors.
There are two popular options. Metallic (mica) or colored vinyl flakes can be sprinkled onto the floor to add visual interest.
Grit, sand aka silica, can be mixed in to make the epoxy flooring a non-slip surface. We recommend grit in any epoxy floor, and especially in a laundry, bathroom or other potentially wet location. Why? A wet epoxy basement floor can be very slick without the grit.
Epoxy basement floor kits usually contain one or both of these additives. Kits are sold in various colors of epoxy.
With garage floor epoxy you have several other decorative options to choose from but typically you wouldn’t use those in a basement.
EPOXY BASEMENT FLOORING – COST FACTORS
How much does a basement epoxy floor cost? Your price on the spectrum from $3.35 to $12.50 per square foot depends on these factors.
Who Does the Work – Cost estimators peg the labor at 40% to 60% of the total cost – or 0% if you do it yourself. If you hire a pro for your basement epoxy floor, there will be up to $2.00 per square foot difference in cost between a local handyman and an epoxy flooring specialist. The question is, can the handyman do the job properly and make the cost savings worth it? Our recommendation is to hire a pro with day-in, day-out basement epoxy floor experience.
Floor Repair – Our basement epoxy flooring cost range includes filling minor cracks, which by itself costs about 75 cents per linear foot. Leveling the floor is a separate cost discussed below in our Cost Table.
Concrete Cleaner – Even if your basement floor is new, it should be cleaned first. Cleaning removes laitance, the fine milky dust common to concrete. Run your hand over the floor, and see what it picks up. Yes, cleaner is a good idea at less than 10 cents per square foot. To have a pro clean the floor runs 45 cents per square foot on average.
Acid Etching – Many kits include acid for cleaning and etching the concrete surface. If you buy the elements separately, etching acid runs $30-$40 per gallon with coverage of about 250 square feet per gallon.
Number of Coats – A single coat is standard for basement applications. If your installer tells you the concrete is especially porous, a clear base coat of epoxy might be recommended. The tinted color coat is applied over the base coat.
Optional Topcoat – To optimize durability when you anticipate the floor will be ruggedly treated, a clearcoat finish makes sense at an average or $1.75 per square foot for the material and application.
Flakes – Many kits include flakes. If you buy them separately, cost for a 1,000 square foot basement will run $100 to $200 based on how liberally you sprinkle them.
Pro tip: A broadcast flake gun with hopper helps to ensure even distribution of flakes. Cost is $90 to $125. Most pros have their own broadcasters and produce floors with remarkable consistency in flake distribution.
The most common extra cost is leveling a part of the floor, often a corner, that has cracked apart from the rest of the floor and is slightly sunken. If the difference in height is minor, the crack can be filled, and the low area made level with the remaining floor using self-leveling concrete or compound.
Pros charge around $6.00 per square foot for the materials and labor to level low areas. If you DIY, the concrete should be cleaned and etched or primed for better adhesion of the self-leveling material. Concrete primer costs about $15 per quart, enough for about 75 square feet. A gallon goes for around $35 with coverage up to 250 square feet.
Further reading: Basement Floor Cracks | Causes & Cost to Fix or Repair
Let’s pull all the potential costs together. Kits and individual components are priced.
Remember that most basement epoxy floor kits include acid etch, 2-part epoxy and flakes.
You’ll also find kits with those materials plus non-skid grit and tools – a mixing bucket and mixer to attach to a drill, brush for edges and a roller pad. The more all-in-one the kit is, the higher the cost.
|All-in-One Kits (500 s.f.)||$275 – $480||Kit components and tools|
|Concrete Cleaner||$10 – $15/gallon||Quality and container size|
|Acid Etching||$30 – $40/gallon||Etching agent|
|Primer||$0.25 – $0.50/s.f.||Some brands require a primer coat|
|Flakes – 1,000 s.f.||$100 – $200||Flake material and density|
|2-part Epoxy||$0.35 – $0.45/s.f.||Quality and container size|
|2-part Epoxy Applied||$3.50 – $6.00/s.f.||1 or 2 Coats, Who you Hire|
|Pro Crack Filling||$0.50 – $1.00/foot||Crack width, number of cracks|
|Pro Floor Leveling||$3.50 – $6.50/s.f.||Size of area, depth of material used|
|Brush, Rollers, Pan||$12.00 – $40.00||Quality|
GET THE BEST PRICE ON BASEMENT EPOXY
Let’s clarify that heading – the goal is to get the best price on an epoxy floor for your basement that is properly installed and will last for decades.
In other words, if you’re going to hire someone for the work, make sure they have excellent experience and a track record of quality work. This can be done by checking online reviews and their rating at places like the Better Business Bureau.
OK, the key to getting a great job at a fair price is to request estimates from multiple epoxy basement floor companies. Let them know they are competing for the work.
What does the job include? Since you want to compare prices based on the same services, get in writing exactly how the floor will be prepped (cleaned and etched?), what materials will be used, how many coats will be applied and how many pounds of flakes will be used.
Avoid the highs and lows: Let’s start low. Bids that are more than 15% below the nearest bid are dubious. It might be that the company plans to cut corners, use inferior materials, or both, or has a poor reputation it is trying to overcome with low costs.
On the high end, the best epoxy basement floor installers are busy enough to charge higher prices with little concern about whether they get your job. If an epoxy floor contractor is known to have superior workmanship and you’re willing to pay a higher price for it, that’s a solid decision.
If the price seems unreasonably inflated, then choose a well-respected installer with a competitive price for your basement epoxy floor.
About the Author:
Rob joined the Home Flooring Pros team in 2014 and is a freelance writer, specializing in flooring, remodeling and HVAC systems (read more).
“I’m the son of an interior designer and picked up an eye for design as a result. I started hanging wallpaper and painting at 14 and learned enough on the job to be the general contractor on two homes we built for our family and did much of the finish plumbing, electrical, painting, and trim work myself.”