Looking for any advice people have to offer about choice of paint, coatings, procedure, etc.


  • Original kitchen floors (doug fir) from a 1925 home.
  • About 150 sq ft.
  • Floors were originally covered with sheet vinyl, using a tar adhesive. Over the years, 3 additional layers of linoleum have been added.
  • (Everything's been tested for asbestos; no measurable asbestos content.)
  • I've removed all linoleum, the sheet vinyl, and as much of the tar adhesive as I reasonably can without engaging in serious sanding. (Who knows how much wood I'd have to remove to erase all signs of the tar, staining, etc? I'd rather not find out.)
  • We want a bright color (red/orange) on the floor, but for various reasons we'd prefer to paint than to lay down new linoleum (or other flooring).

Here's what I'm expecting:

  • Sand thoroughly, rough (100-grit), clean up dust.
  • No primer. (I've read/heard that primer doesn't stand up well to foot traffic. Too soft. Better to just apply the floor paint directly.)
  • Apply multiple, thin (or thinned) coats of latex enamel paint, designed for floors. (Maybe Sherwin-Williams’ Porch and Floor Enamel?).
  • No polyurethane top coat, which would make touch-ups more difficult.
  • Touch-up annually or as needed.
  • Your assertion about the primer doesn't really make sense. Primer is a bonding layer, not a wear layer. Follow the instructions for the paint. You'll probably want to sand to a finer grit than 100.
    – isherwood
    Jul 12, 2017 at 18:53
  • Ah yes, instructions! Hadn't thought to check for those online. Sherwin Williams Porch & Floor Enamel doesn't recommend priming. Benjamin Moore does. I had planned to go with SW.
    – PhilPDX
    Jul 12, 2017 at 20:58
  • (When I say that the primer is "too soft", what I'm picturing is actually a primer that's not rigid enough, and tends to tear/fail under the shear and tensile stresses common with foot traffic. That could easily vary from paint to paint, so as you said, I'll follow the instructions!)
    – PhilPDX
    Jul 13, 2017 at 17:54


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