Concrete and Epoxy Floors in Houston 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 floors in Houston need some sort of protection, regardless of where it’s located. The challenge, in the overall picture, is to determine what type of protective material to choose for the various conditions. Often, the choice is clear to REFINE’s Estimators & Craftsmen; Epoxy Floor Systems
The installation of Epoxy Floors in Houston is a service REFINE’s Craftsmen have extensive experience with in a myriad of commercial and industrial environments.
REFINE’s Epoxy Floors Systems are coatings that are bonded directly to the surface and offer long term protection that may or may not, depending on client needs, have some aesthetic value. The challenge 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 professionals to assist in proper selection, application, and maintenance of the floor coating. REFINE Concrete Services Flooring Estimators can guide the owner and we’ll be with you every step of the way; from planning all the way through to successful completion.
REFINE’s Material Selection Process
(1) Evaluate the surface
REFINE will provide a complete system, from conception to long-term maintenance. The process will include the following:
- The first step in the selection process is to evaluate the existing surface to determine what you are working with. The surface must be structurally sound, clean, and must not be contaminated with any foreign material that could interfere with the bond of a new coating system. This includes concrete curing compounds.
- Is the surface distressed in any way?
Does it have cracks, spalls, or unevenness? Does the coating system require a level floor or one that slopes to a drain? Patching, repairing, and leveling are as important as the coating system. It is important to say, however, that any material used to level, patch, or slope must be compatible with the total system. A cheap, low-performance patching and leveling material can ruin an otherwise good coating. This is why it’s essential to ensure REFINE is the same contractor that is doing the Epoxy Coating and any needed repairs.
- What type of surface preparation is needed for the area in question?
Concrete Surface Preparation is the most important step in the installation process and is critical to long-term performance of the total system. There is no one “best way” to prepare the surface. The Epoxy coating selection (thin film or thick) will have a bearing on the type of preparation. Or, to put it another way, the required surface prep can dictate the type of system from a thickness standpoint. A thin film coating will require preparation that will not leave a heavy profile. A heavy profile may require a leveling or fill coat before the thin film installation. REFINE Concrete Services is equipped with the industry’s most advanced Diamond Floor Grinders & Shot Blasters for concrete surface preparation.
(2) Consider the Performance Conditions for your Houston Epoxy Floor
There are four major areas of abuse that will dictate the type of REFINE Epoxy Flooring System needed:
- Chemical Exposure: Severity of exposure and types of chemicals are both very important. Coatings differ widely in chemical resistance, making identifying the exposure very important. Common splash and spills also are far less critical than constant immersion.
- Abrasion: The amount of wear or traffic an epoxy or resinous surface will take is an important criterion. Whether there will be steel-wheeled traffic or rubber-wheeled traffic is critical. Any surface exposed to steel-wheeled traffic requires special treatment for long-term wear. Ultimately, REFINE may determine that another of their many systems is appropriate for your concrete floor, like Polished Concrete for example.
- Impact: Heavy loads and direct impact require a heavier build or thicker floor system.
- Thermal Shock: Temperature fluctuation or thermal shock is an important condition that must be considered. Thermal shock, such as steam cleaning of the floor surface, will cause a loss of bond from thermal expansion if the epoxy floor system is not chosen properly. The coefficient of expansion of most coating systems is much higher than for concrete and must be carefully considered when selecting a material.
(3) Other considerations
Other considerations are often overlooked when selecting or specifying an epoxy floor system. However, don’t be concerned, you can be assured that REFINE will discuss each of these considerations with you and your team. These lesser considerations don’t necessarily contribute to the function of the system, but are important as far as being able to install a particular system and assuring owner satisfaction.
- Aesthetics: The final appearance of the floor surface is more important than many people perceive it to be. How an owner thought the floor was going to look, versus the final appearance, is sometimes widely divergent. Today, the same performance characteristics can be obtained with a variety of REFINE’s decorative appearances and surface textures.
- Installation Parameters: In many cases, a flooring project has a very tight installation schedule. This limits many systems in how long it takes to install a given material. In occupied areas, the odor of some solvent-based systems or the inherent odor of the material itself will limit its use and timing of installation. Temperature of the surface at the time of installation is critical in selecting a material. REFINE will consult with you and collaboratively help you decide the timing and coatings type best suited for your commercial or industrial environment.
- Life Expectancy: Of course, our clients want a flooring system that will last forever, and will be guaranteed. ANY system will require maintenance periodically. Maintenance procedures will be clearly outlined, understood and put in to practice for a realistic life expectancy.
Installation & Inspection
Once the REFINE system has been chosen, the material must be applied and the job inspected and approved. Choosing REFINE to install the system is just as important as the material used. REFINE’s Craftsmen are trained and highly experienced in the installation of Epoxy Floors in Houston. The job does not end with the application of material. Depending on your environment and it’s potentially ongoing needs a long-term review, maintenance, and repair program will be established for continued performance and satisfaction. All floor surfaces take continuing wear, abrasion, and impact. Even the most durable surface will show areas of distress that require attention. A small amount of attention both before and after installation will prolong the life of a flooring system. As years go by, the success of the project will depend upon the coordination between REFINE and the facilities manager/owner.