Thick and thin floor coating systems
Floor coating serves as thin protective layers on existing floors and as thicker complete flooring systems in the United Arab Emirates. The thin layer floor coatings are usually not thicker than a millimetre, but the complete resin flooring systems may reach up to one centimetre in thickness. The most common resin flooring for concrete on the market is epoxy-based resin floor coatings which comes with unique properties. Wooden floors can also be coated (most commonly with polyurethane), as we cover later in this article.
5 pros of floor coating:
- Promotes hygiene: The seamless layer prevents spread and growth of mould, bacteria and fungi.
- Applicable in every sector: There is a suitable floor coating for every environment.
- Decorative: Available in nearly all RAL colours and in finishes from ultra matt to high gloss.
- Functional additives: It is possible make floors anti slip or fire retardant by using the right additives.
- Cost efficient: Can postpone the need for a new floor, complete floor coating systems are durable and easy to maintain.
Often a floor coating is by far the best flooring option, however, there are some disadvantages related to floor coatings and their application. Consider the following factors before applying floor coatings so you know what you are dealing with:
5 cons of resin flooring:
- The application process is time consuming : The application is a specialist job and can last several days, with some exceptions.
- Layer thickness and surface preparation is very precise: The thicker the floor coating layer, the more preparation the substrate requires.
- Epoxy is scratch sensitive: It is a hard wearing and impact resistant coating, but it lacks scratch resistance. It is wise to apply a polyurethane top coat to increase scratch resistance.
- Pricing and durability: Thin film floor coatings are affordable, however, in the long-term they lack durability. Thicker layer floor coatings are very durable and do not require much maintenance, but they are more expensive in terms of material and application.
- Not easy to apply: only a specialist will get a durable result, as it takes precision, exact right drying time and skills to get it right
Now you know the advantages and disadvantages and you still want to opt for a floor coating, we will gladly provide you with professional advice on choosing the right floor coating for a specified environment.
Choosing the resin flooring based on your needs
As every environment is different, it is crucial to choose a resin flooring that matches the requirements of your specific location. So, before you jump into looking for floor coating products you should define what is expected from the coated floor.
1. Mechanical and chemical resistance – Epoxy floor coating
Possible applications: Industrial floors, warehouses, parking garages, workspaces, factories
This coating is an extremely hard-wearing solution which relies on epoxy resins. The coatings result in a seamless surface resistant to liquids and dirt, which makes them easy to clean. Epoxy floors bear heavy mechanical loads and do not abrade as a result of foot or vehicle traffic.
2. Walking in comfort for the crowd – Polyurethane (PU) floor coating
Possible applications: museums, showrooms, public places, retail stores, offices or in the living room
Polyurethane coatings are more flexible than epoxies, which makes them softer and more pleasant to walk on. These coatings are also known for their decorative properties; not only are they available in many colours but they also provide a high gloss finish. Also these coatings are easy to clean due to the fact that they are somewhat resistant to contaminants.
3. High hygiene requirements – HACCP floor coating
Possible applications: food and dairy industry, canteens, catering establishments, swimming pools and health centres
Floor coatings with an internationally recognized HACCP certificate contribute to a hygienic, anti bacterial environment; these coatings make sure that fungi and bacteria do not have a chance to attach to and grow on the floor. The HACCP floors are also highly resistant to contaminants and aggressive cleaning chemicals. In UAE, HACCP coatings are mandatory for sectors that process food.
4. Need for continuous activity (+ mechanical and chemical resistance) – Instant floor coating
Possible applications: parking garages, factories, catering kitchens, museums, distribution centres
Instant floor coatings are innovative flooring solutions for floors that should be coated with the absolute minimum downtime. The instant floor coatings do not need time for drying, as they are cured by UV radiation.
5. Decorative protection for wooden floors – Oil, stain or lacquer
Possible applications: residential and commercial interiors, terraces, decking
Oil, stain and lacquer are perfect solutions for protecting a wooden floor, such as parquet, while letting it retain its natural beauty. Oil is transparent and enhances the natural colours of wood. Stain is absorbed by the wood resulting in a light, semi transparent colored finish. Stains also provide protection from moisture and UV radiation, which makes them suitable for exterior wood such as decking. Lacquer provides a transparent high gloss film on wooden floors. There are also pigmented lacquers which provide the floor with an opaque colour finish.
Always opt for a tailored floor coating solution; provide the contractor with as many details as possible in order to achieve the most suitable floor coating. In case you need any consultancy in choosing a floor coating or you wish to reach suppliers of a specific resin flooring, do not hesitate to contact us. We are happy to help!
Functional top coatings to improve your floor
Depending on the requirements for the floor, the coating can be complemented with a top coat that gives the floor additional properties. This is mainly to provide additional safety and protection. A top coat is suitable on any of the aforementioned coatings apart from the wooden floor coatings. However, the top coat must also meet the required standards: a restaurant floor still must be hygienic, a factory floor must not wear easily and a commercial floor should remain pleasant to walk on. If you are opting for a completely new flooring system, these properties can also be created by incorporating additives into the actual floor coating. In that case an additional top coat is not needed.
The functions a top coat may have include:
- Anti slip – for where additional anti slip grip is needed
- Fire resistance – to minimize fire hazard
- Anti static – where electronic machines may cause short circuits.
- Luminous paint – to illuminate escape routes.
- Floor coating flakes – for a decorative special effect
How to calculate the cost for a new floor
The floor coating price is usually calculated per square metre. If you want to request a quote for coating a floor, never forget to mention the surface to get the right cost calculation. The following 5 factors influence the price of resin flooring:
- Coating type: Epoxy is generally cheaper than polyurethane.
- The larger the surface, the lower the floor coating price: Small surfaces are usually relatively expensive to coat.
- Pre-cleaning: Some surfaces, such as concrete, require intensive pre-cleaning and surface preparation.
- Cheap may turn out expensive: Ask carefully for the quality of raw materials, they determine the durability of the floor coating.
Find floor coating companies in the United Arab Emirates
We at Coatings.ae are happy to offer our services to provide you with a floor coating solution in the United Arab Emirates. In cooperation with our coating partners we can make you a competitive proposal for both material and application of floor coatings. Request your free tailor made quote by clicking the button on this page.