Epoxy flooring is increasingly popular, both at home and in commercial spaces. These floors are known for their rock-solid durability and unique aesthetic, but there are several other advantages.
However, did you know that there is more than one type of epoxy coating? If you wish to install an epoxy coating, it is essential to know which type best suits your project. Béton Surface is a company that specializes in epoxy floors in Montreal, Outaouais, and all over the province. Our consultants are ready to guide you through the different floor materials so you can make an informed decision.
We invite you to browse this complete guide on epoxy floor coatings to discover everything there is to know about the subject.
What is Epoxy Flooring?
An epoxy flooring is a floor that is coated with epoxy resin. The first mistake people tend to make is to think of epoxy coatings as just another floor painting. While it’s not wrong to think of epoxy as paint, it’s also not entirely correct.
Contrary to most floor paintings, epoxy is a two-part coating that you mix, rather than a simple paint that you can just readily use on the floor. They are either solids-based, solvent-based, or water-based.
Epoxy can also be described as containing a resin part and a hardener part, and this is where the difference lies between paint and epoxy coatings. Floor paints don’t usually have the hardening part, and that’s why epoxy is more durable and resistant than simple floor paint.
For example, garage floor paints are mainly oil and water-based and tend to flake within a couple of years. A garage floor in epoxy will last up to 20 years under the right conditions. If you wish to coat an interior concrete surface with a durable product, it is highly recommended to opt for an epoxy coating. That is why epoxy is the perfect floor finish for lofts and basement floors.
That said, while the epoxy is an excellent flooring option, it is still essential to choose the right type of floor coating. Not all epoxies are the same, and some might be preferable for your project. Do not hesitate to ask our team for help. We’re happy to put our expertise at your disposal.
How Many Types of Epoxy Flooring Are There?
At Béton Surface, we offer three different epoxy types: solid colour epoxy, transparent epoxy, and metallic epoxy. Each of these materials is unique and can be used in various flooring projects. Here is a quick lay down of their properties.
- Solid Colour Epoxy: 100 solid epoxy creates a smooth, uniform finish for your floor as every epoxy coating. It also resists stains, chemical products, and scratching. Solid colour epoxy is a favourite for both residential and commercial uses because of how versatile it is. It is generally offered in a wide range of colours, making it the most customizable floor coating out of all epoxies.
- Clear Epoxy: When it comes to garage floor coatings, clear epoxy is the material our experts recommend the most. Its timeless design is perfectly suited for garages, whether they are residential or commercial. This coating also enhances the natural beauty of concrete while protecting it against bumps, scratches, and chemicals.
- Metallic Epoxy: Metallic epoxy is an excellent coating for commercial spaces, restaurants, or any space at home that you’re looking to modernize. Its metallic river designs are eye-catching and contemporary and enhance any room they are added to. This epoxy coating is also resistant, durable, and low maintenance.
The Difference Between Epoxy Floors and Other Floor Coatings
The main difference between epoxy floors and other floor coatings is the components. Most coatings are single component, such as oil-based or water-based paints. However, epoxies are two parts that need to be mixed, which are the resin part and the hardening part.
Garage paints can be used on the floor, but they’re mainly designed to go on the walls and ceilings. It means that the coating will deteriorate rapidly in heavy traffic, whether on foot or by car. In that case, we would recommend opting for an epoxy resin coating instead of choosing a floor paint, simply because it is more resistant and will last a lot longer.
That said, there are other coatings for the garage floor, such as polyurea coatings.
Our experts would usually recommend choosing a polyurea with flakes coating in the garage, as they are flexible. This flake floor, when compared to epoxy, has a higher resistance to temperature fluctuations and ground movements.
What Are the Benefits of Epoxy Floors and How Long Does It Last?
There are several benefits of epoxy floors. Besides their durability, which can go up to 20 years under the right conditions, epoxy coatings are also known to be:
- Watertight: Epoxy creates a protective layer on top of your concrete. This layer is smooth and has no joints, preventing any water from infiltrating your concrete and damaging it.
- Resistant: Stains, scratches, bumps, bring it. Epoxy coatings have a high performance and tolerance that no other coating can compare to.
- No COV before, during, and after the installation. Epoxy isn’t made with solvents, and so it has no unpleasant odours and isn’t dangerous for your health.
- Brightness: It is possible to choose a glossy finish that reflects light and improves luminosity in your space.
- Resistant to mould and bacterial growth: Because epoxy has no joints and a smooth surface, it is easy to clean. Furthermore, since this material is watertight, nothing can penetrate it, which prevents the possibility of bacterial growth or mould.
Installation Process of Epoxy Floors
Epoxy isn’t that difficult to install, but we still highly recommend leaving that work to specialists. Because it dries fast, mistakes can be hard to correct, and working with experts will guarantee you impeccable results. Epoxy flooring is an investment, so do not hesitate to seek professionals if you have a floor coating project.
Here are the steps for a successful epoxy coating installation.
5-steps installation process
- Cleaning the concrete surface
The first step is to clean your concrete floor. You do not install a fresh new coating on top of dust or an old cracked floor unless you want your flooring to be uneven.
Start by taking the extra furniture out of the room, then give a good sweeping to your floor to get as much dust out as possible. If necessary, do not hesitate to use a flat-edged shovel to remove debris stuck or hardened on the surface. You want the surface to be as clean and smooth as possible. Clean any stain too as they may compromise the adhesion of the epoxy coating.
Hose the entire floor to make sure there is no dust or debris left, then leave it to dry. If you have any cracks in the concrete, it is recommended to fill them in before installing a fresh coating.
- Mix Your Epoxy
Once the floor is dry, you can start mixing your epoxy following the manufacturer’s instructions on the packaging. Mix the concoction until complete blending.
- Protect the Limits of Your Floor
Protect with duct tape the zones where the epoxy flooring stops. In a garage, apply the tape directly beneath the garage door. Protect the garage walls with 4 inches of tape at the bottom.
- Installing the Epoxy
Using a paint roller, install the first layer of paint, then leave to dry according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Once it’s dry, you can install the final coat, making sure to hide noticeable seams if there are any. Keep the edges wet as you move from section to section to avoid these seams from forming at all.
While not mandatory, the right finish can add another layer of protection to your epoxy, ensuring optimal resistance and durability. Once the first two coats are dry, you can install the finish and take the tape off your walls.
Cleaning and Maintenance of Epoxy Floor Coating
Another advantage of epoxy flooring is that it is low maintenance. All you have to do is sweep any debris you see and immediately clean any spills with a soft cloth, soap, and warm water. Since the surface is smooth and without joints, dust won’t find cracks to set in, and your floor will look and be clean with a simple weekly cleaning.
Although they’re easy to clean, we highly recommend avoiding the use of abrasive products, which can damage the epoxy finish.
Custom Epoxy Flooring at Béton Surface
Installing epoxy might not be complex, but it still requires certain expertise. Béton Surface’s floor specialists have more than a decade of experience installing custom epoxy flooring.
Whether you’re looking for a new coat in your garage, basement, or kitchen, our team can help you. Working with our team will ensure you’ll have high-quality, impeccable results and flooring that meets your expectations.
We can also work on residential, commercial, and industrial projects. No matter the scale of your flooring, we’ll make sure you are satisfied. To work with our team, all you have to do is fill a form and an experienced member will go to your address for free to evaluate the project. Then, we’ll give you our submission and once you approve, the work can start.
If you have any questions about epoxy flooring or the different epoxies, contact us. We’ll gladly take your call and answer all of your questions.