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Can You Epoxy Over OSB? (How To)

Most people consider OSB to be a construction-grade material. Although that is typically true, it can also be beautiful if it is prepared properly.

You can use epoxy over OSB to beautify the wood and make it suitable for day-to-day use. This is true of furniture made out of OSB as well as an OSB subfloor. As long as you prepare the wood properly and use high-quality epoxy, you will be happy with the end result.

Close up of OSB texture

As you will find out in this article, using epoxy over OSB is not always going to be a straightforward process. There are some things to consider that will help to make you happy with the process and allow it to last for many years.

Can You Epoxy Over OSB? (How To)

If there is one piece of advice that I could give you for using epoxy over OSB, it would be to buy the highest quality epoxy possible. This is not a time for you to cut corners or try to save a few dollars.

If you are happy with the look of the OSB, there is nothing wrong with going with clear epoxy. It will help to bring out the natural beauty of the wood and you would be surprised with how good it looks when you are finished.

On the other hand, there may be times when you want to use pigmented epoxy. This will cover the look of the OSB, but it will still provide you with a nice surface that can be any color you like.

Finally, use epoxy with 100% solids. Don’t try to buy one that is less, because it will not work as well and you won’t be happy with the result. If you are trying to save money, this is not the place to do it.

Should You Epoxy Over OSB?

Guy wondering if you should put epoxy over OSB

Since we now know it is possible to use epoxy over OSB, is it something that you should consider doing?

There are many benefits to using epoxy over OSB. For one, it is a less expensive option than using a higher quality wood but it will work just as well for most applications. As long as you use OSB that is of high quality and free from any major defects, you can be happy with the project.

OSB is a rather unusual type of wood. It is often sought after for construction because it is durable but less expensive than plywood.

When you really take a look at OSB, however, the different pieces of wood that are bonded together make a beautiful choice for any type of furniture or even a flooring surface. You can epoxy over it to bring out the beauty of those small pieces of wood.

One drawback that you will need to consider is using epoxy on a floor of OSB is going to require some extra work. It can be done, but you will have to be very cautious and fill the cracks first before you spread the epoxy over the entire floor.

Doing so will help to stabilize the floor and make the project much better.

How To Epoxy Over OSB

Confused man standing

Applying epoxy over OSB is very similar to using epoxy over any other surface. There are some differences that may need to be considered, however, including the following:

Step 1: Repair – OSB is not typically of the highest quality and if you are choosy, you will have a lot of repairs to do. This may include filling some holes in the OSB itself as well as ensuring that everything is attached and affixed properly.

Think of it this way, if the OSB shifts and moves underneath the epoxy, then the epoxy is not going to last very long. It will start cracking almost instantly.

Having everything attached properly and fixed in place is going to make the project last longer.

Step 2: Fill – If there are any cracks between the pieces of OSB, they need to be filled with epoxy before you do the entire project. You will then have to wait at least 24 hours for the epoxy to dry.

If you fill in the gaps between the OSB ahead of time, it keeps them from shifting under the epoxy. Filling them in ahead of putting the epoxy down allows the gaps to dry so that they are no longer separate pieces but they are now acting as one, single piece.

Step 3: Prime – Use a flexible epoxy primer to completely prime the OSB in advance. Some people try to skip this step, but it is one that is important if you want to job to be done completely and properly.

Step 4: Epoxy – Now is the time when you actually mix and spread the epoxy. Make sure that you work in a methodical manner from one side of the room to the other or from one side of the piece of furniture to the other.

There may also be some pigments that are added at this time. Make sure that you have everything prepared in advance for this possibility.

Step 5: 2nd Coat – when you apply epoxy over OSB, a lot of it is going to soak into the wood. This is to be expected and it’s not a problem, but the first coat is not going to give you the desired look.

If you really want to have a beautiful finish, you should apply a second coat. This could really make a difference in the look of the final product and gives you something to clearcoat.

Step 5: Topcoat – The final step in the process is to apply a urethane topcoat. This will really help to bring up the beauty and to make the job one you can be proud of.

What Tools You Need To Epoxy Over OSB

Painting tools needed for putting Epoxy over OSB

You will have to have some tools on hand if you want to put epoxy over OSB. Having these ready in advance will help you to move through the process without any unnecessary delays.

Broom and Dust Pan

Shop Vac

Sandpaper

Squeegee

5 Gallon Buckets

Rags

Sponges

Rollers

Brushes

Paint Trays

Shoes (Gunite or Cleats)

What Preparation You Need To Epoxy Over OSB

Confused man standing

You really can’t underestimate the need to prepare the OSB properly before you apply the epoxy. This is true, regardless of whether you are refinishing a piece of furniture or putting epoxy over an OSB subfloor.

The most important factor for preparing OSB is to ensure that everything is attached solidly. If there is any movement in the OSB under the epoxy, it is going to cause the epoxy to crack and you will ruin the job.

Copyright protected content owner: ReadyToDIY.com and was initially posted on September 5, 2022.

For the most part, this will mean screwing down the epoxy to the subfloor as solidly as possible. It is going to be impossible to remove all of the movement from the subfloor, but you can get it as solid as you can.

Next, you will have to repair any damage that may exist in the OSB. Perhaps it is missing some of the small pieces of wood and that will have to be filled properly before you put any epoxy on it.

Some people fill it with epoxy and allow it to dry, but I find that it is much better to fill it with a piece of wood and sand it down properly. It may take more time, but it is really going to make a difference in the way the OSB looks when all is said and done.

Then again, if you are using pigmented epoxy, you don’t have to worry about the look of the OSB under it. All you really need to worry about is ensuring that the OSB is not shifting and moving under the epoxy so it doesn’t crack.

After ensuring that everything is attached as solidly as possible, it is time to clean the wood. Go over the wood very carefully, making sure that there is nothing protruding from it.

The best way to do this is to use a putty knife or a scraper and gently glide it over the floor. Be careful you don’t catch on any uneven surface and have to patch the floor again.

Vacuum and sweep the floor very carefully, being sure to vacuum out the spaces between the pieces of OSB. You can then start with the epoxy.

Before you apply the epoxy finish, you will want to put some of the epoxy in the spaces between the OSB. You can either use a crack filler to do this or some epoxy that is leveled.

Filling the cracks in advance and allowing them to dry thoroughly ensures that the entire OSB area is going to move as one unit. It will help to avoid any cracking in the epoxy.

The OSB should now be ready for the application of epoxy.

Copyright article owner is ReadyToDiy.com for this article. This post was first published on September 5, 2022.

You can apply epoxy over OSB but you have to prepare the wood in advance. This would include removing any defects and ensuring that it is solidly in place. When you apply epoxy over OSB, it brings out the natural beauty of the wood.

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ReadyToDIY is the owner of this article. This post was published on September 5, 2022.

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