Indulge in Options: Different Coatings for Your Concrete Floor

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Technological advancements have allowed concrete flooring to become very versatile. Depending on your unique set of needs and preferences, various coatings can be applied to make concrete floors more functional, durable, and attractive. While tiles, wood, carpets, and other materials are often placed down over the concrete, this article will focus specifically on coatings directly bonded to the concrete’s surface.

Picking the Proper Coating

Determining which coating is right for you depends on several factors. One of the main things to be considered is the condition of the underlying concrete. The concrete must be structurally sound and not contaminated with foreign material, as either of these could negatively impact the coating’s ability to bond with the concrete.

Another factor in helping you determine which coating is right for you is the amount and type of punishment that the flooring will take. For example, if your floors are regularly exposed to chemicals, a chemical-resistant kind of coating should be chosen. The amount and type of traffic your floors will face should also be taken into account. Is the traffic mostly foot traffic? Is it machinery? Does the machine have steel or rubber wheels?

Some other considerations include the installation time frame, how the finished product is going to look, and the cost of each option. Additionally, life expectancy should be taken into account.

Types of Coatings for Your Concrete Floor

Polyurethane Coating

A polyurethane coating is an excellent way to protect your floor against wear and tear, stains, oils, chemicals, and more. It is easy to clean, light reflective, and durable.

Polyurethane is a thermosetting polymer and is considered a high performance coating. A conventional coating is only about two to three millimeters thick, and the thickness can’t be adjusted. Although relatively thin, it is extremely durable and flexible, aiding in impact absorption. It is also more resistant to abrasion than epoxy coatings.

Additionally, because polyurethane is U.V. stable, it won’t yellow (as does epoxy) when exposed to sunlight over a prolonged period of time.

Epoxy Coatings

Epoxy coating is similar to polyurethane in many ways. It offers a durable and dependable surface for commercial and industrial flooring. Typically, epoxy coatings are applied to concrete floors to create a smooth finish that can last several years while withstanding heavy loads and high traffic.

Epoxy is a high performance coating that is robust and long-lasting. These coatings can take the punishment of variable temperatures, chemical abrasion, heavy machinery traffic, and constant cleaning and maintenance.

Epoxy flooring is also easy to maintain. Small spills can be cleaned with a paper towel or soft cloth. Routine maintenance cleaning is best achieved with a soft bristle broom or commercial dust mop, while heavy duty cleaning can be easily done by sweeping away debris and mopping the floor with hot water and clear ammonia.

Elastomeric Coatings

Elastomeric coatings are a great option for areas that are subject to great shifts in temperature. As the name suggests, elastomeric paint is elastic. This allows the coated surface to expand and contract without any cracking or other damage to the elastomeric coating.

Unlike acrylic, elastomeric coatings need to be applied up to ten times thicker, sometimes causing an irregular surface appearance. After years of successive applications, elastomeric coatings can become rubber-like, making them almost impossible to sandblast or pressure wash. Finally, elastomeric coatings don’t always adhere well to the substrate, causing elastomeric to sag in unsightly ways.

While elastomeric coatings do provide some benefit, other types of coatings are typically preferred.

While these are just a few of the coating options available for your concrete floor, the list is much more extensive. Lakeside Painting is a premier commercial painting company providing various types of commercial and industrial flooring options. Serving Wisconsin and select cities in the Midwest, our highly-skilled commercial painting contractors can help you complete your flooring project, no matter how large or small.

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