100% Solid Floor Coatings – A Material Selection Guide for Facilities

Normally, facility managers select the materials that they need for their floor coatings systems, with a mind to minimize costs and still get quality performance. Materials selection is not a simple process of going to the nearest store and buying the products. To achieve cost and performance benefits, a careful selection process for the best-manufactured products should be observed.

Factors in Floor Coatings Selection

For floor coatings systems, in particular, facility managers have to study the properties and costs of existing products. They also factor in the specific requirements and conditions of the floors. For instance, if the floor is made of concrete material, and it has sustained cracks and holes, then the facility manager may need a 100%-solid concrete filler to fix the problem and restore the floor’s original good condition.

Once it has been determined that a 100%-solid concrete formulation will get the job done, price considerations come into play. The facility manager then compares properties and pricing to narrow down the floor coatings choice. When product manufacturers price their products, they cost it on the basis of expected and deliverable performance, as determined by laboratory testing and analysis. They also weigh in the quality of the raw materials they used in the formulation. Facility managers, on the other hand, must weigh the floor coatings’ cost not only in terms of its properties or performance alone, but also if it is able to meet the specific requirements of the facility floors.

The Material Selection Guide

Material selection for floor coatings involves comparing products and getting the best-fit product for facility requirements. The properties of each product are compared both technically and economics-wise. To get to the most appropriate product, the facility manager must rely on accurate information about the products as a basis for his or her decision-making.

This guide to material selection is provided by the manufacturer’s product information sheet or, as often the case, by the material safety data sheet (MSDS). These sources of information provide a complete profile about the product and lists down the properties of each.

The selection guide is often a lengthy document, because every product feature is disclosed. The general product profile is outlined, and the rest of the guide contains technical application methodologies — from surface preparation, mixing, handling and even disposal of the floor coatings product.

Product Profile for 100% Solid Formulations

The material selection guide for 100% solid floor coatings may contain the generic description of the product and its common usage, such as whether it is to be used as a filler, surfacer, or for patching holes and cracks. The guide will also indicate surface suitability, be it concrete or steel surface, or application acceptability, such as in water tank interiors, as protective coatings, or whether or not the product requires a topcoat.

The product guide will disclose the technical properties of the coating system and the appropriate methodologies to handle the product. For steel applications for example, the recommended surface preparation may be according to SSPC-SP6/NACE 3 or SSPC-SP10/NACE 2 blast cleaning with a minimum mil anchor profile. For concrete applications, the curing days will be indicated, with a dryness verification test conforming to ASTM D 4263 or “plastic film tapedown test”.

Lastly, safety recommendations are also contained therein, such as the amount of volatile organic compounds that the floor coatings product may contain, and the proper handling, equipments, gears, and safety precautions that must be observed when handling these products.

Some Facts on Industrial Floor Coating

With the upward growth of concrete use in households and buildings, it can be deduced that the use for industrial floor coating has increased as well. It’s only natural as many now conceive that concrete and coatings come together more nicely than just concrete only. These days, you also consider the concrete coating when you think about the concrete for your home or building. This is only reasonable after seeing the aesthetic and durability results of having coated concrete. Isn’t it just nice to look at your concrete floor when it is so nicely textured ad patterned? Walls and countertops can also be significantly improved with the help of concrete coatings.

Many people are generally familiar with industrial floor coating. However, some facts have been mixed with some myths about floor coatings. Here are some points to straighten out what’s true and what’s not:

Coatings and Coloring Mixtures: No matter how they may seem like coatings, some products that enhance the appearance of concrete are not really considered as coatings. Chemical stains like acid stain, for example, is not exactly a coating. It is actually a coloring process that creates a chemical reaction with the concrete surface. There are a lot of other products that may be considered as floor coating to some people, but technically are not.

The Real Process of Coating Concrete: It is a general thought that coating would initially fail because, by its nature, it would bridge the porous surface of the concrete and trap the moisture present in the surface. You see, the moisture vapor should be allowed to escape. If not, there will be problems of blistering, peeling, and delamination, all of which contribute to concrete coating failures. Nowadays, though, there are products available that dismiss the initial thought. New elastomeric coatings are one of these products. It is the application of a thick elastic film that enhances the concrete surfaces and conceals cracks, patches, and other concrete problems.

Curing Period of 30 Days: Some coating products can be used after just seven days of curing. You’ll have to read the manufacturer’s instructions carefully and see if this applies to your coating product.

Concrete Block Fillers: Some people deem concrete block fillers unnecessary. But using the block fillers will enhance the concrete surface. It provides a stable foundation and fills up the pores and voids in the surface. With regards to block fillers that are heavy and difficult to apply, there are block fillers available nowadays that will save you some time and effort. These new block fillers also weigh less than the traditional ones.

These are only some of the issues that needs to be cleared up. These facts may not seem worthy of your time. But when it comes to choosing and applying coating on your concrete surfaces, these may help. The curing period of seven days and the new concrete block fillers, for example, can help in saving you some time while improving the quality and durability of your concrete. Facts like these can be helpful, even in just small ways, when you do the application for industrial floor coating.

Enhanced Aesthetics With Industrial Epoxy Floor Coating

Keeping industrial floors in top condition is critical to business operations. Downtimes for replacement and repair are costly to business. Floor damages lessen the appeal of industrial spaces, making them a poor work environment for employees.

Facility managers rely on industrial epoxy floor coating applications to maintain good floor conditions. Here are a few simple but effective tips in implementing industrial epoxy floor coating application projects:

1. Choose quality over cost. Quality products may cost more, but they guarantee good performance.

2. Surface preparation is critical. Repair any damages, clean and degrease the surfaces carefully. Improper preparation can cause the rest of the application process and the finished floors to fail.

3. Call on the professionals. Experts have the skills, experience and resources to deliver quick and error-free applications.

Why Epoxy Coatings?

Industrial epoxy floor coating products stand above the rest in delivering the highest quality and best performance in industrial floor applications. They are highly-resistant to oil, chemicals, water, and physical impact from mechanical loads and pedestrian traffic. These elements assault industrial floors frequently in the course of daily operations.

Industrial epoxy floor coating products are also good materials for floor beautification. There are many epoxy products with a wide range of color choices to choose from. Epoxy works well as concrete finishes, or top coats that enhance the look of industrial floor finishes.

Industrial Epoxy Floor Coating Application Problems

There are cases when industrial epoxy floor coating applications encounter challenges that threaten the process of bringing back the beauty and good condition of industrial floors. Here are some of them:

1. Formation of air bubbles and pinholes. Thick epoxy coats can form round bubbles from trapped air. This can come from either an improper mixing speed, or from cement out-gassing, or the improper use of foam rollers during application.

2. Uneven coloration. Unsightly differences in coating color come from mixing small batches of industrial epoxy floor coating products, or working in sun-exposed environments.

3. Fisheyes. Fisheyes are tiny craters erupting in the coated surface, and are due to the presence of grease and dust particles coming in contact with the coatings.

Causes of Adhesion Failure

The main reason for a total coatings failure is often an underlying adhesion failure. Below are the reasons why good adhesion is not achieved:

1. Ultra-violet radiations. Exposure to the sun’s rays can break down the adhesive properties of epoxy coatings, turning it brittle and prone to cracking.

2. High humidity. Industrial epoxy floor coating products change their properties when exposed to humid surroundings. Product preparation, mixing and application are compromised.

3. Moisture. Damp surfaces, particularly concrete, are vulnerable to adhesion failure. When flowing water is present during application, it erodes the adhesive bond between surface and coating.

4. Foreign contaminants. Dust, dirt, grease and oil lessen surface adhesion. Oils, in particular, causes hollows and voids within the coating, causing failure in the course of time.

Industrial epoxy floor coating products are often the top choice for floor maintenance and repair. They are tough, enduring, and comes in many colors. With good surface preparation, industrial epoxy floor coating applications have a high chance of success. Success offers the benefits of industrial floors that are long-lasting, stylish and practical at the same time.