It seems there was a miscommunication and a contractor painted the concrete floor by mistake. I know that the proper way would be to remove the paint but I try to avoid that because overall project progress is too far (walls painted, cabinets built in, some ornamentals in place, ...). Now I try to mitigate, not get to the ideal solution.

The concrete slab was painted with 1-part epoxy acrylic paint. I called the manufacturer and they say that the only thing that might help is to apply a primer/sealer on top of it. They have an acrylic product that can be applied after roughing up the surface (manually roughing up the surface is as far as I can go in terms of making a mess).

It is an indoor low traffic area so there wouldn't be a lot of stress on that floor and the plan is to put a layer of floating hardwood on top of it. Even though the variation in height seems no more than 1/2 inch, there are small and big craters and bumps all over and the floor is very uneven. It doesn't have to be leveling compound, it could also be some sort of construction adhesive, epoxy or whatever.

I would appreciate any pointers to whatever could be applied here to level the floor.

  • For all of the answers below, I did some research and called company tech support lines. Except for the Gyp-Crete product (not available to small projects) it boiled down to "strip the paint". I called the contractor that painted the floor and after my explanations and a polite discussion he agreed to make up for it and strip the paint chemically. – this Mar 10 '16 at 21:49
  • I'd like add to the below answers that auto body fillers might also be an alternative (thanks Iggy). – this Mar 10 '16 at 21:52

I think I'd be looking at something like Gyp-Crete, which will level and smooth the base. This creates an ideal surface for floating laminate or engineered wood floors. You'll probably want to apply an appropriate sealer as well.

  • I called the company, they said sure it would work. They have some epoxy primer that would do just fine on that paint. However they primarily supply commercial contractors and the contractor in my area (Westchester County, New York) doesn't even consider small residential projects. – this Mar 8 '16 at 15:08

the best way to do this is get yourself a 5 gallon pail of unwaxed polyester resin (used for fiberglass boats, etc) and catalyst. mix to the manufacturers suggested ratio an pour away. it self levels better than anything else in the world (it literally flows like water) and when it sets, it will weld itself to your floor unlike anything else, and its magnitudes stronger than anything used specifically for floor leveling. its more costly, and stinks to high heaven for a couple of days, but its perfect for this type of job. we use it three or four times a year for this type of thing.

  • I like that out of the box thinking! However because of the smell & chemicals I'll continue to investigate other solutions before I fall back to this one. Great advice though. – this Mar 8 '16 at 15:11

I'm thinking self-leveling (with a little persuasion) Concrete Resurfacer below & on top of 1/4" Cement Board. The Cement Board is just to dramatically cut down batches of Resurfacer.

Otherwise, you can possibly find a Dry-Mix Concrete Company around you that would be able to batch a self-leveling (") cement on site. They're the greatest thing since sliced bread.

  • The current floor looks like a cratered moon landscape (I'll edit the question to clarify). Even though the variation in height is no more than 1/2 inch, there are small and big craters and bumps all over. Gluing down a board wouldn't work I guess. – this Mar 7 '16 at 17:19
  • Oh, he didn't float it...ouch. Not a big deal. Just skip the glue & use the Resurfacer as both your glue & Leveler with the 1/4" Cement Board between. – Iggy Mar 7 '16 at 19:05

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