Differences Of Epoxy and Polyurethane Floor Coatings

The solutions of polyurethane (PUR) and epoxy flooring systems make each much better suited for different environments, and not understanding the distinctions can lead to dire effects, according to resin flooring specialist ArmorThane.

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According to the specialist, which recently released an article on the subject, knowing when to use the ideal floor is vital not only for contractors but likewise for project and center managers. They discuss that each system has actually varying properties fit to particular uses. As such, choosing the incorrect option can cause pricey repairs and even total floor failure down the line.

CONIPUR HG PURE – FULL PUR - CONICA AG

Checking Out the Molecular Makeup
Some resemblances do exist between epoxy and PUR floor covering because both are two-component systems including a resin and hardener. When united, these two parts undergo a process of stoichiometric treating to form a solid layer. In both cases, this results in a smooth, impervious coating that can be used rapidly in large quantities, the specialist discusses. Nevertheless, the different materials that make up each coating result in unique applications.

The main difference in between the two types of products remains in the molecular structure, which impacts how each merges together throughout the treating process. While there are several kinds of parts that can be utilized to somewhat differ the end result, the specialist says PURs effectively have a higher cross-linked density than epoxies, making them the more difficult using of the two.

Because of this, PUR systems have actually long been related to using strength, toughness, and strength when confronted with a range of screening conditions. These can include heavy footfall, physical effects, severe temperature levels, and corrosive chemicals. PUR systems are for that reason extremely well suited to commercial centers, where the floor is likely to face a long list of heavy use challenges every day.

Hard Polyurethane Applications
One downside to epoxies is that they are a lot stiffer in regards to structure and can not endure intense heat as well as PUR coatings. For instance, some epoxy coatings can resist heat at temperature levels up to 65 ° C, the specialist discusses, whereas PUR systems are available that can tolerate 120 ° C.

The superior chemical resistance of PUR floorings has made them popular in the food and drink market, where destructive acids and spin-offs are discovered in big quantities. This indicates that floorings are needed that can stand up to chemical attack from organic acids as well as sugar, malt, caustic, and powerful cleaner.

When dealing with PUR floor covering, the professional states it is necessary to understand the various types. For example, there are full PUR “liquid vinyl” floors, which can produce soft surface areas underfoot due to the PUR’s elastic nature. More common are PUR deck coatings used for parking lot and PUR concrete systems, which the professional states are the most failure-resistant kind of resin flooring available.

PUR concrete is frequently discovered in challenging industrial facilities, as it can stand up to punishing effects, severe temperature levels, heavy loads, harsh chemicals, and more. The PUR concrete can likewise be personalized with anti-slip aggregates, anti-bacterial additives, and is extremely adept at handling increasing moisture. However, the PUR concrete is normally not color stable unless it has an aliphatic coating.

Epoxies Offer Aesthetic Benefits
What PUR systems give in sturdiness is often removed in versatility and looks, according to the professional. If those homes are desired, many epoxies can be adapted for numerous environments and are available in a much broader series of colors, styles, impacts, and decorative choices than PUR.

Epoxies are a popular floor choice for customer-facing locations that need to look good on top of being functional. (Images thanks to ArmorThane).


Epoxies are a popular flooring option for customer-facing areas that should look excellent on top of being functional. Picture courtesy of Flowcrete Group.
Unless there is a specific challenge or requirement for a PUR, there will more than likely be an epoxy floor that depends on the task at hand, and which can do so in bright and glossy tones, glittering light-reflective surfaces, or multi-toned swirling tones, according to the specialist.

In turn, this gives designers the creativity to install unique floorings that convey an interior decoration scheme. This is an especially good way to represent a brand identity, specific aesthetic, or to instill the environment with a wanted vibe.

This has actually made epoxies a popular floor for large-scale business places, such as shopping centers and airports, along with in less durable industrial spaces or for customer-facing processing zones that need to look great on top of being functional.

PUR systems also tend to be thicker and much heavier than epoxies when applied. While that thickness is excellent for absorbing impacts and thermal shock, epoxies can use a thinner and lighter choice if weight and area is an issue.

In summary, it’s not so much a case of which one is better, as it’s really about which one is much better for the building in question, the professional composes, adding that it has representatives readily available to assist if prospective users have more questions.

Common Epoxy Flooring Problems and How to Solve Them

Six Reasons why Epoxy Floors Fail | The Waterproofing and Industrial  Flooring Blog

Epoxy flooring can cure into a gorgeous, glistening finish that protects surfaces. Unfortunately, improper treatment can have drastic effects on the appearance and texture of your floors. Epoxy or Resin is a tricky material if you don’t have professional experience applying it.

The flooring product needs Resin and an activator to be a true epoxy. Because epoxy flooring is a two-part product, it requires professional installation to get the precise ratio. If an untrained individual attempted to use the product, your floors could end up with some shortcomings. Even installation from qualified flooring technicians can go wrong due to several uncommon but possible conditions such as:

  • Normal wear
  • Weather conditions
  • Improper installation

These conditions, among others, can lead to a variety of epoxy flooring predicaments. Don’t get down though, because there are always solutions to these problems with your floors. Read on for the most common commercial epoxy flooring predicaments and how to resolve them.

The Epoxy Floor Screw up by Epoxi Floor Coating - YouTube

Problem: Epoxy Floor Peeling

If you notice portions of your epoxy floor coming up or splitting away, you have epoxy floor peeling. Peeling creates a rough surface and an irregular appearance, damaging the concrete flooring under it.

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An epoxy floor can peel for several reasons, some of them associated with the neighboring conditions as professionals apply it. An epoxy floor can peel if during application or environment:

  • The temperature is too high
  • The temperature is too low
  • The humidity is high

Resin and hardener need the proper conditions to set. If the humidity has been high at your business, moisture can seep out of concrete floors beneath your epoxy. The buildup of moisture can create different problems, peeling included. Temperature variations may also cause condensation, adding more to your moisture predicament.

Even if the weather doesn’t vary between hot and cold, either extreme may cause epoxy floor peeling. When the temperature is too hot or cold, it may influence how the epoxy cures in your building or outside. If your epoxy doesn’t set correctly, it won’t lay right on the concrete. You’ll see peeling and uneven Resin as a result.

Preparation of surfaces is also important for smooth epoxy flooring. For various reasons, a professional will make sure your floors meet the following circumstances.

Fix Concrete Floor Cracks By Yourself
  1. Are clean of oils and debris: These substances spell trouble for Resin. Oil and other materials can get trapped under the epoxy. The coating can’t correctly adhere to concrete floors if something obstructs their application. Grease and oil on your floor will also cause the Resin to set improperly, which leads to peeling.
  2. Have opened pores: If a surface is too smooth, epoxy can’t adhere to it. When that happens, you end up with peeling floors because the Resin couldn’t bond as it set.
  3. Are completely dry: Whether you washed your floor or a professional removed previous epoxy flooring, it needs to dry. Allow at least 24 hours between washing your concrete flooring and having a professional apply new Resin. Wet flooring creates the same problems like a dirty floor, where epoxy can’t adhere to the concrete.

If your floors are dirty, too smooth, or wet, the Resin will not harden correctly. If you’ve yet to have a professional apply your epoxy flooring, you’re in luck. Some straightforward precautions will help prevent epoxy floor peeling in future applications. If your Resin is already on and you notice peeling, you still have some solutions. If you are looking for some high-quality epoxy products or installers, we recommend getting in contact with an established company. ArmorThane has been in business for over 30 years, and they have been a go to company for us and many others around the world for several years. They consistently win awards each year and are always updating and upgrading.