Epoxy flooring has been very popular due to wide a range of major advantages it provides: durability, appealing aspect, easy installation, safety for users, and resistance to chemicals as well as wear and tear. Once your epoxy floor is installed, you have little to worry about. The main difficulty lies in the floor preparation stage. Preparing your floor before the epoxy coating is crucial for the lastingness of the floor coating, and getting it wrong can be disastrous. Unfortunately, you’ll only know when you’ve really got it wrong once you’ve moved to the next step which is generally too late and costly to fix. This is why you need to prepare your surface very carefully before the actual installation of the epoxy flooring. The following floor preparation steps are advised:
1. Making sure the concrete is structurally sound
If you want to obtain durable results with your new epoxy flooring, the first step you need to take is checking the state of the floor. A reliable epoxy floor contractor will test the concrete and determine its condition. One of the most common tests is water vapour transmission, too much water in the concrete structure prevents proper coating adherence.
There are two main types of concrete, hard and soft, as well as rain affected. With this kind of concrete, the slab was poured either in rainy conditions or the concrete was affected by rain before it dried. Slabs need to be tested before you coat over the top, as hydrostatic pressure can literally blow the coating off.
2. Cleaning the floor
This stage is compulsory before installing any type of floor. Vacuum up any dirt and dust to clear the surface and ensure perfect adherence of the new flooring.
3. Choosing the right type of diamond for grinding
Another important aspect to keep in mind with floor preparation for epoxy flooring is opting for diamond grind. When preparing concrete, at Tough Floors we diamond grind as opposed to acid etching. We feel this gives a better base for the epoxy to stick to. Further, the acid needs to go somewhere, generally a drain or your garden.
Acid etching is a very distant second to mechanical diamond grinding. The choice of diamonds used to grind is crucial. Many people choose to hire a diamond grinder, but they generally get an ‘all purpose’ diamond which may not be appropriate for the job.
4. Ensuring levelling and flatness
Levelling and flatness are two different things but they are achieved at the same time. Getting a substrate level and/or flat can be very costly, but is required for obtaining good results.
5. Patching holes and cracks in concrete
Prior to installing epoxy flooring, you will often need to patch holes and cracks using a variety of appropriate products. Some of these products can set as hard as the concrete itself, so don’t be worried if the surface you want to apply the epoxy flooring to is cracked or has holes in it. By using the right product, these imperfections will have no impact on the quality and aspect of the flooring.
At Tough Floors we have the experience and expertise needed to ensure perfect floor preparation, so you enjoy your new epoxy flooring and its qualities as long as possible. Give us a call today and tell us how we can help!