Epoxy coatings are increasingly popular for concrete floors in homes and businesses due to their durability, aesthetic appeal, and chemical resistance. But what makes these coatings so effective? Let’s take a closer look at the science behind epoxy coatings and how they work.
The Epoxy Curing Process
Epoxy coatings are made up of two components: resin and hardener. There are many kinds of epoxies on the market today, covering a wide variety of hardness, setting times and costs. Most are a petroleum derivative. But when these two components are combined, they chemically react and form a rigid, plastic-like material that bonds tightly to the concrete surface. The chemical reaction between the resin and hardener is an exothermic process called curing, and respecting the process is critical for a good result.
The curing process is influenced by several factors, including temperature, humidity, and the ratio of resin to hardener. The ideal curing conditions are around 70 degrees Fahrenheit and 50% relative humidity. It’s also essential to get the right ratio of resin to hardener, as this can affect the hardness, flexibility, and chemical resistance of the epoxy coating.
Once the epoxy coating has cured, it forms a dense and durable layer that can withstand heavy foot and vehicle traffic, as well as resist stains, chemicals, and abrasions. It even resists ultraviolet radiation. The surface of epoxy is non-porous, which means it won’t absorb moisture or other liquids that could stain the underlying concrete. Since the epoxy coating is spread over your concrete in liquid form, it works with the porous characteristics of your concrete to make a powerful bond. As a result, properly laid epoxy coatings do not chip or peel away from your concrete floor.
Features Available with Epoxy Coatings
Epoxy coatings offer a wide range of aesthetic options, including a variety of colors, materials, and textures. West Coast Epoxy offers color flakes, metallics, micas, granules, and other additives that enliven your epoxy coatings. We can also add a business logo, printed pattern, stripes, or arrows to your epoxy floor to customize the look to create your own unique design. With coved flooring and no-slip options, we can also increase the safety and security provided by your epoxy coatings. These options allow you to create a customized look with functionality that complements your home or business.
More Than Just Science
Although the science behind epoxy coatings is all about the chemical reaction between the resin and hardener, the result is all about protecting your concrete and creating a floor that meets your practical and aesthetic needs. With so many options to choose from, you might need more than science to determine the best look and feel for your epoxy coatings. West Coast Epoxy has decades of experience helping businesses and homeowners get the most with their epoxy floors. Good epoxy floors also require a skilled human touch! Give our office a call, or schedule a free onsite consultation using our online form.