As the options for concrete floor coatings proliferate, the selection process becomes more complicated. But while it may take more research to choose the most appropriate coating for your concrete floor, the wide range of choices gives you the ability to select the systems most specifically tailored to your facility. Concrete may seem like it lasts forever, but it is porous and subject to damage when harassed by moisture, abrasion, chemicals, traffic, and just plain hard knocks. When you’re looking to select a coating for your floor, take the following into consideration.
Traffic: A floor will take more abuse than most substrates in your facility. Will there be a lot of people walking over it, will they be pushing, scraping or rolling heavy equipment over it (metal wheels will damage the floor faster than rubber), will there be forklifts and other vehicles driving across it?
Chemical exposure: Cleaning solutions, food, or other materials might expose your floor to constant chemical contact.
Water: Will there be a lot of moisture, puddles, or even standing water on your floor?
UV exposure: Sunlight can wear down your concrete floor as well as the coating on top of it, if it’s not UV resistant.
Temperature: Will there be quick temperature fluctuations on your floor, for example pouring hot or cold water on it repeatedly?
Skid Resistance: Installing a skid resistant coating can mitigate slip and fall hazards, making your facility safer, more productive, and less prone to down time or lawsuits.
Aesthetics: How do you want it to look? It can be decorative, plain, even have various colors to designate traffic patterns, safety concerns, or the use of certain areas.
By listing all the factors that will impact your floor, you will be able to narrow down your selection; making a list of the most important of these in your situation can help you choose the best coating for your concrete floor. For example, if abrasion or chemical resistance is most important, then you’ll want to select a coating that excels in those characteristics.
Costs and Coating Options
Very few facilities will tell you money is no problem, so you’ll need to weigh the costs with the benefits, not just for the near future but over the life of the coating. In choosing a product, consider your budget for the coating, how long installing that coating will keep your floor out of service, how soon you may need to reinstall it, and what kind of maintenance will be needed. There are some quick fixes when it comes to coating a concrete floor, but they’ll require that fix more often. Bear in mind that in most circumstances a coating will not hide imperfections in the floor. Any cracking, spalling, or other damage needs to be repaired prior to installing the coating.
Conventional paint provides the fastest installation but also the shortest lifespan. Chemicals, traffic, and moisture will work together to degrade it quickly, and your aesthetics are limited to solid colors. However, if your floor won’t be getting that much abuse, this might be a plausible option.
Watco’s Concrete Floor Paint is the perfect solution for this situation, delivering high quality at a competitive price. This economical coating will brighten dull or stained concrete, and its extra strength polyurethane formula protects areas that see heavy foot traffic and lightweight rubber-wheeled handcarts.
For further safety and protection, Watco’s Safety Coat brings great anti-slip properties to your facility while still being easy to clean. Available in five colors, it’s more attractive than a conventional “gritty” paint and performs well in areas that may see heavy wear and slippery floors.
Epoxy carries yet a higher installation cost but has lower lifetime maintenance costs and it may keep you from having to redo your floor for quite some time. It gives you the option of a wide range of decorative opportunities, and its longer life means you’ll be spending less in maintenance and downtime once the coating is installed.
Watco’s Epoxicote High Build heavy-duty floor paint comes to the rescue (or instead “is an ideal option”) in these situation, providing an ultra-hard wearing chemical resistant gloss floor coating. This tough and durable product comes in many different colors and once applied, gives your floor a beautiful sheen. A ceramic additive provides excellent abrasion resistance and improved stain protection.
Watco Makes it Easy
The Watco Flooring Solution Finder is a new online tool that can quickly steer you to the right system for your floor. By answering just a few questions on the site, it will guide you seamlessly to your seamless coating. You will need to know what your surface is made of and its current condition, the use it will be subject to, and the type of finish you desire. From there the site will recommend products and application tools needed to get the job done.
More questions? Your Watco rep is poised to help from here. Let Watco be your go-to for all your flooring needs.