Most experts agree that epoxy is the best coating to use for garage and commercial flooring.
A major reason for the popularity of epoxy is that it creates a strong surface that is resistant to damage from cars, heavy equipment and foot traffic.
Another reason is that it covers over cracks and flaws in the concrete. It also can turn a dull floor, such as a cement surface, into one that is shiny, attractive and of a high quality. Such an appearance is not only good for a residential garage, but also for a parking garage or commercial flooring.
Epoxy coating comes in a variety of colors and is moisture resistant. It is not always easy to decide, however, which is the best epoxy product to use in each particular situation.
If you are uncertain about which epoxy coating you should use for your flooring, here is a guide to help you decide.
Water-based Epoxy Coating
The main benefit of water-based epoxy coating is that it is easy to apply. Similar to latex paint, it goes on so easily that some users confuse it with paint. But it is far thicker than paint and adheres more strongly to the surface on which it is applied.
This ease of use is particularly attractive to the do-it-yourself user who can not only apply it in a similar way to applying paint, but can also clean up the brushes and other equipment more easily.
The drawback of water-based epoxy is that the quality is lower than other forms of epoxy coating. It also is usually useful only for one application.
Use of a higher grade of epoxy coating equips a floor to be resistant not only to damage from cars, heavy equipment and foot traffic, but also to stains, chemicals even scratches. Oil that spills on the floor can easily be wiped up. If you do choose a higher grade, selecting 100 percent solid epoxy will provide the most protection.
Application of commercial grade epoxy is usually a job for a professional company. It is usually worth the extra cost. Because these surfaces wear so well, it is becoming common to find warranties that last as long as 15 years. Although this application is more expensive, the price should be balanced against the life of the coating.
Clear Epoxy and Polyurethane Top Coats
Should you require even more protection from damage to the flooring, you should select clear epoxy and polyurethane topcoats.
They provide a thicker and therefore stronger protection and they look even more attractive than regular commercial grade epoxy. Sometimes paint chips are added to render the surface even more durable.
Call on the Experts
Unless you require a relatively thin layer of epoxy coating, it is advisable to call on a professional industrial flooring company that can cover the flooring expertly and correctly the first time. A company will also advise you on the best form of epoxy to use.
Professional installations usually include a number of coatings to ensure that the coverage is highly resistant and looks good. Be aware that the total time for a full installation can take up to five days, although newer materials allow for shorter times.