During the last thirty years, the protection of concrete floors has gone from essentially nothing to a fairly sophisticated process of some type of protective coating or surfacing. The main purpose, of course, is to provide protection to the slab from deterioration or contamination, or to provide some added benefit such as aesthetics, wear, non-skid, chemical resistance, ease of maintenance, physical performance, and a myriad of other properties. We must remember that no other surface in a building takes more abuse than floors, regardless of the type of building, whether it be industrial or commercial.
Floors are subjected to just about every kind of abuse – impact, abrasion, chemical attack, and thermal shock. Concrete floors are not designed to take this continual abuse. Concrete floors are porous and tend to create dust from wear and abuse. They are also subject to abrasion and chemical attack. It’s for this reason that all concrete needs some sort of protection regardless of where it’s located. The problem, in the overall picture, is to determine what type of protective material to choose for the various conditions.
This article does not concern resilient tile, ceramic tile, carpet, or wood, which are placed on top of concrete floors. These do add a benefit, but are primarily used aesthetically for residential and highly commercial areas. We are focusing on coatings that are bonded directly to the surface and offer long term protection and may or may not have some aesthetic value. The problem for most decision makers today, whether it be architects or facility managers, is to choose the most effective material and application that will result in the best performance and lowest life cycle cost. It is increasingly clear that these individuals must rely on knowledgeable people to assist in proper selection, application, and maintenance of the floor coating. The flooring specialist can guide the owner in proper material, application, and long-term performance, thereby reducing the long-term cost of floor maintenance.
Concrete floor protection should be part of any study or evaluation for new or old concrete floor protection. The thorough process for selecting a coating or topping system, the writing of a detailed specification, and the preparation of detailed application procedures and final acceptance criteria will give the owner a basis for choosing the right system. There is a very complete selection process to narrow the search for the right product and application for floor coatings. Remember, you must not only select the material, but also a total system in terms of application, total thickness, and aesthetics.
Your coatings applicator must be able to provide a complete program from conception to long-term maintenance. The process should include the following.
- Evaluate the surface
- Consider the Performance Conditions (chemical exposure, abrasion, impact and thermal shock)
- Other considerations (Aesthetics, Installation Parameters, Life Expectancy, Economics)
- Review material properties and application procedures
- Specify type and thickness
- Installation and inspection
Such needs as chemical attacks in secondary containment areas and corrosion problems, these concerns are costly and may lead to shutdowns. Our goal is to eliminate those types of costly disruptions. We have the knowledge and experience to provide the appropriate linings and coatings as well as meeting the proper surface preparation to ensure the longest service life possible. Below are a few of the services we can provide to address some of the specific concerns listed.
Ultra Violet Protection
Fire Proofing Application
Fire Caulk Penetrating Application
A-1 can provide walk through inspections and assessments of your facility as well as provide your organization with a cost analysis of the areas that are of most concern.
Please consider A-1 Industrial Maintenance Inc. when outsourcing projects in the future or contact us for any of our company information. We look forward to the opportunity to providing you with our services.