Painted Plywood Sub-flooring

Sometimes you've got to live with what you've got until it's in the budget to change it up. This room was created by taking half a dining room and a walk in closet and putting them together. Everything in the room has been done, but flooring just wasn't in the budget yet. Yes, we could have thrown down some carpet, but we really want this flooring to match the rest of the house which won't be changed until later this year. So, in the mean time, we decided to make lemonade out of lemons and paint the sub-floor to resemble hardwood.
Here's the finished product. You can barely tell it's sub-flooring!
Here's what we started off with. It was super dusty and gross.
The first step was to clean out all the dust and dirt.
Next was to paint the floor. We just used a latex paint, painting the corners and edges first and then the middle.
After painting, it needed to be sealed. We put 3 coats of polycrylic on the floor with at least 24 hours between each coat.
Once all the rugs and furniture were in place, you can hardly tell it's just sub-flooring. Still can't wait to get new flooring in though!

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Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!


Have a question about this project?

3 questions
  • Cynthia Joscher
    on Feb 29, 2016

    I'm planning to do this in my finished basement, a freak storm caused the entire basement to flood and ruin the carpets & subfloors. After picking up the subfloors my husband and I discovered whomever put them in used a thick glue & nails which made a mess of the concrete. Any suggestions on how to fix this or are we better off recementing?

  • Ter6365545
    on Jul 19, 2016

    Do you have a pic?

  • Pat
    on Oct 17, 2019

    What is the best way to paint a plywood floor a light color, either white or soft gray?

Join the conversation

2 of 114 comments
  • Louise Lortie
    on Sep 15, 2016

    I think this will be my next project!

  • Diana Deiley
    on Sep 25, 2017

    Woman after my own heart! I love what you did, it looks awesome. I personally don't like carpeting for a number of reasons, so the painted floor is perfect. It will also provide a 'background' should you later decide to install hardwood. Being budget friendly is a bonus! Thanks for sharing your great home improvement project. Keep up the great work.
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