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    Will Winter Slow the Curing Time of My Floor?

    Epoxy Flooring

    Winter is known for many things: colder temperatures, icy conditions, and snowflakes. Lesser known would be winter's effect on epoxy curing times. Before scheduling an epoxy installation, it is important to know how winter weather will affect the curing time of your new floor.

    What Does "Curing" Mean?

    When an epoxy floor is installed, the resin is initially a thick but pliable liquid. After preparing and thoroughly cleaning the floor's surface, the epoxy is applied and allowed to self-level. The finished surface must be allowed to dry and harden, or cure. Temperature, humidity, and thickness of the epoxy all play a role in curing times. Moving equipment onto your new floor or allowing foot traffic too soon will cause significant damage to the surface. Allowing adequate time for proper curing is a crucial step in the installation process.

    How Does Temperature Affect Epoxy Curing?

    Most materials that begin as liquids require time to dry and cure. Environmental conditions like temperature and humidity can speed or slow the amount of time necessary for the curing process.

    Epoxy is an exothermic material, which means it is temperature dependent. The amount of time it takes to cure is dependent upon the ambient temperature of the room or facility. The higher the ambient temperature, the faster the curing time. The colder the ambient temperature, the longer it will take for the epoxy to cure. Ambient temperature is the most important factor. Heated facilities can schedule epoxy installations at any time with little disruption to the daily operations of the building. Unheated facilities such as some hangars, garages, and storage facilities, may find that scheduling installations during warmer weather better suits their needs.

    Though epoxy is a vastly different substance than paint, it may be helpful to think of it in the same general terms when it comes to drying and curing times:

    • applying in direct sunlight will cause it to dry too rapidly
    • applying to a damp or wet surface will adversely affect the substance's ability to cure
    • do not apply to a surface that is below freezing
    • do not apply to a poorly prepared surface

    Ready to talk epoxy? Our professional sales staff is ready to talk to you about how an epoxy floor can improve your business's appearance, safety, and maintenance costs. Contact the team at Liquid Floors for an estimate today.


    Our Epoxy Flooring Installation Checklist

    Installation Process of Epoxy Floor Coating

    Having epoxy flooring installed is a great way to ensure that your concrete floors look great and serve your business well for years to come. An epoxy floor is sleek, stylish, and easy to maintain. A successful epoxy installation depends on careful preparation.

    Step 1: Schedule the Installation

    Once you have chosen a reputable contractor, you must choose an installation date that will work with your business's work schedule. Remember that you need to allow yourself adequate time to prepare the concrete floor for the epoxy coating, the installation itself, and time for the floor to cure before work can resume.

    Step 2: Clean the Surface

    To ensure a successful epoxy application, the concrete floor surface must be free of chemical, oil, and other residues. If the concrete has been previously painted, the paint should be completely removed.

    Step 3: Repair Chips and Cracks

    While an epoxy coating can cover small imperfections in the concrete, it is best to repair large chips and cracks prior to the application of the epoxy.

    Step 4: Clear the Installation Surface Prior to Installation

    Prior to the contractor's arrival, plan to clear the installation space of all equipment and personnel. This may require moving heavy equipment to another location or disrupting your employee's work schedules to be certain that the contractor has access to the space. A final sweep of the floor to remove grit and debris is important.

    Step 5: Plan to Remain Available

    While the installation is in progress, you should plan to be available to answer questions and provide direction. Once on-site, your contractor will continue with professional preparation such as diamond grinding or hand grinding, which will ensure that the epoxy materials adhere to the concrete floors. Also, be sure to discuss maintenance of your new flooring with the contractor and plan to follow their recommendations to make certain your floor remains as beautiful as the day it is installed.

    Liquid Floors has years of experience in industrial flooring. We specialize in flooring for pharmaceutical, manufacturing, industrial, and automobile industries. If your business could benefit from an epoxy floor coating, contact us.


    4 Ways to Make Your Epoxy Flooring Last Its Longest

    Epoxy Flooring

    Epoxy floors are a great solution for high traffic areas. They are easy to clean and maintain, and will lessen upkeep expenses that usually occur with high-maintenance floors. Although epoxy is durable and can withstand a number of elements, there are a few ways to extend the life of your floors before you have to get them redone:

    1. Keep them clean
    2. One of the best ways to maintain the life of the floor is to keep it clean. Sweep it daily and run a automatic scrubber over it at least once a week. Make sure to use a ph neutral detergent. This will ensure your floor is properly maintained and will maintain its luster.

    3. Use mats
    4. If your floor is in a warehouse or facility where a lot of machinery is used, mats will help protect the flooring. This will also work as a safety measure for employees who are on their feet most of the day. Placing mats at the doorway will also deter dirt and other debris from being tracked on the floor.

    5. Address stains immediately
    6. If you notice any stains on the floor, remove them quickly with a light scrubbing pad. This will keep the floors nice and will significantly lengthen the life of the flooring.

    7. Use supports when operating heavy machinery
    8. When operating heavy machinery that can damage the floor, using extra supports to balance the weight and avoid dropping heavy items on the floor will go a long way.

    How long will my epoxy floor last when properly maintained?

    When properly maintained, an epoxy floor can last for years. The key is in making the maintenance and upkeep of the floor a priority. In high traffic areas, the lifespan can extend far beyond expectancy if there are little to no spills, there is not a lot of foot and machine traffic, and the floor is swept and scrubbed on a regular basis.

    How can I determine whether or not an epoxy floor is right for me?

    Epoxy flooring is useful in a number of industries, and home usage. It is best to assess your needs and what type of activity will be done on the floor.

    For more information on epoxy flooring, contact the team at Liquid Floors for an estimate today!


    How To Improve Worn Concrete Flooring: You Have Options to Consider

    Repairing Damaged Concrete Flooring

    Installing new concrete flooring adds a modern, clean look and feel to any space. Over time, though, it can wear down and become damaged, dull, and just worn. It may seem like an impossible feet to bring this look back to its natural beauty again, but there are solutions that can help. In fact, the right products and materials can actually aid in improving flooring significantly, adding value to your space and reducing any "worn" look.

    Don't Put Off a Solution

    Whether your manufacturing plant or your aerospace building needs an update to the concrete flooring, you don't want to put off this upgrade. Even small pot marks, scuffs, and other discolorations on concrete flooring create a significant impact not only on the aesthetics, but also on the overall stability of the flooring. Finding a workable solution to restore these floors is possible and essential.

    Liquid Floors

    Take a look at a few of the options on the market and you will quickly see you do have some options. For example, the use of epoxy coatings, which are both cost-effective and long lasting, could be the ideal solution. Instead of pulling up and removing the existing concrete flooring that is in good condition structurally, you can add an epoxy coating over the top, creating a smooth, beautiful, and highly durable solution. It's one of the best ways to create a stunning, smooth floor finish without having to pull up existing materials.

    Polishing Is an Option

    Perhaps you don't want to lose the look, function, and feel of your current concrete flooring. You may not have to. With concrete polishing, it is possible to remove a great deal of the marks and blemishes of your existing flooring and restore the beauty it once had. If you plan to use this method, it is very important to turn to a company that specializes in it. This is essential because the wrong application or method can create significant damage and give you a less-than-desirable finished result.

    Take a few minutes to consider your existing floor and how you would like to improve them. With the help of Liquid Floors, there is a highly effective solution available to you. Concrete floors need to be smooth, sleek, and easy to maintain. With these solutions, you can easily achieve these goals and improve the functionality of your flooring within your manufacturing or industrial buildings.


    4 Important Steps a Successful Floor Refinishing Project

    Installation Process of Floor Refinishing

    If you are reading this, you have most likely decided that it is time to refinish your concrete floor through polishing or an epoxy coating. Let us be the first to congratulate you! Flooring is one of the most important investments you can make in your facility. From safety levels to operational efficiency, your facility's flooring has an enormous impact on the daily operation of your business. To best prepare for your upcoming project, these four steps will ensure that your project is a success.

    Select a Qualified Contractor

    Choosing the best contractor is more complicated than a simple Internet search for "best flooring contractors." When selecting a contractor, you should obtain quotes from several reputable contractors, vetting each one carefully. Check their references, the materials they recommend, and question them carefully. For example, do they have insurance? Can they provide a bond? How do they provide equipment for their projects? An excellent contractor will be able to provide the answers to these questions and will be happy to do so for you.

    Communicate with Your Contractor

    Prior to the start of the project, make sure you communicate openly with your contractor regarding the installation schedule and facility requirements. If scheduling your installation for a regular holiday shutdown, you will need to book the project well in advance as these are very popular times for major facility projects. The contractor will also have certain site requirements such as power, heating and cooling requirements for a successful installation.

    Prepare Your Staff and Facility for the Project

    Once you have an installation schedule, make sure that your staff is well informed about the project. Equipment and materials will need to be removed from the project area. The project area must be thoroughly cleaned ahead of the flooring project. During the project, staff schedules may need to be adjusted in order to avoid the project site.

    Be Present and Patient

    Plan to meet the contractor upon arrival and remain available throughout the project. Even the best-prepared installers will have on-site questions during the procedure and/or important information to relay to you. Once the project is complete, follow the installer’s recommendations to allow the floors adequate curing time. Allowing access to the area or moving equipment too soon can result in severe damage to the flooring. In this case, a little patience goes a long way.

    When looking for a qualified industrial flooring contractor, contact Liquid Floors. With years of experience, we are experts in epoxy flooring and polished concrete floors for pharmaceutical, industrial, auto, and manufacturing facilities.


    What Is Involved in the Concrete Coating Process?

    Installation Process of Concrete Floor Coating

    In order to install a beautiful, high-functioning, durable, concrete coating, the floor must be prepared in detail. Failure to perform a step could lead to the deterioration of your coating long before the end of its estimated useful life.

    Floor Preparation

    • Diamond Grinding or Shot Blasting
    • Hand Grinding
    • Floor Cleaning
    • Concrete Coating Installation
    • Sanding
    • Joint Caulking

    Diamond Grinding or Shot Blasting

    The first step to installing a concrete coating involves either shot blasting or diamond grinding the surface. Shot blasting is reserved for floors that have large divots, heavy staining and other deep blemishes. The steel shot removes deep imperfections and readying the floor for a new surface.

    Diamond grinding is used when the floor only has minor pits and divots. This step opens the pores of the concrete and is not as invasive as shot blasting.

    Hand Grinding

    Hand grinding is performed along the edges of the floor to the wall where the diamond grinders and shot blasters could not reach. If this step is not performed, the final coating may start peeling or chipping at the wall.

    Vacuuming

    Once all the grinding has been completed, the entire floor must be vacuumed to remove any gravel, dust and dirt from the floor.

    Concrete Coatings

    The first layer of concrete coating is a primer, which seals the floor, hardens the concrete and prepares it for the additional layers. Additional layers are then applied over the primer to give the coating its desired thickness.

    Sanding

    Once the sublayers are spread and dry, a fine sanding is performed on the floor. This helps the top layer of your coating adhere solidly to the bottom layers.

    Final Coat

    The final coat is a top coat. It is spread and smoothed in the same manner as the previous coats.

    Caulking Joints

    Joint caulking involves cleaning and sealing all the joints in the floor and along the wall. This helps ensure dirt and debris doesn't enter the cracks and helps prolong the life of the floor.

    Here at Liquid Floors, we can evaluate and determine if a concrete coating would be right for your manufacturing, industrial or pharmaceutical business. To learn more about concrete coatings or to schedule your free consultation, call us at 877-547-8431.


    4 Maintenance Tips You Should Not Overlook When Caring for Polished Concrete Floors

    Polished concrete flooring

    Polished concrete floors are an attractive choice for any industrial or pharmaceutical warehouse. Polished concrete floors can be personalized to fit your business's needs with custom colors to match existing decor, logos, and lines to manage traffic flow. With proper care, a polished concrete floor should maintain its sheen for many years before needing another polishing. You may think that because these floors are tough that you can skimp on maintenance. We have four maintenance tips that you should never overlook.

    Daily Dust Mopping

    It may be tempting to skip dust mopping the floor each and every day. A less rigid maintenance schedule means money saved on man hours and the floors will still look great, right? The problem with this strategy is that fine bits of dust accumulate constantly. As we walk over the floors, this dust can act as a very fine sandpaper on your beautiful floors. Dust mop daily with a microfiber pad to maintain that shine.

    Address Spills Immediately

    While spills are easier to clean from polished concrete than unpolished floors, you should address a spill immediately. Repeated exposure to spills can stain or damage the floor. If the substance spilled is corrosive the faster the spill is addressed the better. Additionally, puddles of neglected liquid left standing on the floor can cause a potential fall hazard for employees.

    Use the Correct Cleaner

    When it comes to floor cleaners, all brands are not created equal. Use a cleaner specially formulated for polished concrete along with clean water, following the dilution instructions to the letter. Too much cleaner or dirty water will leave the floors with a filmy haze. Never use an acid based degreaser as this will damage the floor.

    Use a Very Light Touch

    When using a buffer make certain you use a very soft bristled brush or a white or beige pad to buff the floors. Other pads are too rough and will decrease your floor's protective coating and natural shine.

    With proper maintenance, your business's industrial flooring should serve you well for years to come. If your floors don't have the shine they once did, contact Liquid Floors to learn more about how polished concrete can be properly maintained. Our experienced staff offers free consultations to help you choose and maintain the flooring system that best fits your company's needs.


    Can Repeated Exposure to Spills Damage My Polished Concrete Floors?

    Polished Concrete Floors

    One of the best features of polished concrete is that it is easy to care for and resistant to spills. During the installation process, the surface of the concrete floor is ground down to remove imperfections and blemishes. Chemicals are then used to harden the surface of the concrete and make it spill resistant. Unlike wood or a more porous tile flooring, polished concrete gives you more time to address a spill before damage occurs. However, it is not impervious to liquids.

    Time Is of the Essence: Addressing Spills Quickly

    Standing liquids left to puddle on the floor for extended periods of time will damage the floors. Water puddles will leave rings or marks on the flooring, much like the rings you might see left behind on a wooden coffee table. Harsh liquids such as solvents, soft drinks, vinegar or corrosive acid based liquids may eat away at the floor's protective finish. Left untreated, these liquids will continue to damage the floor even after the affected spots feel dry to the touch. These untreated spills may discolor the floor, reduce shine, and even damage the underlying concrete.

    Institute a Spill Protocol

    In this case of spills, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Regular maintenance and prevention are the keys to having beautiful floors that last for years. If repeated spills are dealt with promptly, the damage to the floor from repeated spills should be minimal. If possible, use preventative measures to avoid spills in the first place or to contain them in a spill-prone area. When a spill occurs, follow this protocol to deal with it:

    • Cordon off the area with safety materials immediately. Spills can create fall hazards.
    • Follow manufacturer's recommendations for removing the spill. This may include a mixture of clean, warm water and a specialized cleaning solvent that is PH neutral. Harsh cleaning chemicals will damage the floor's protective coating leaving the floor vulnerable to future spills.
    • Repeat as necessary to ensure complete removal of the spill.
    • Allow the floor to completely dry before removing safety signage and allowing foot traffic to resume.

    The reality of industrial flooring is that spills happen. The frequency of repeated spills factors less into your floor's longevity than the time it takes your maintenance team to respond to and clean up a spill. For help with your concrete floors, contact Liquid Floors for a free consultation.


    How Long Do Epoxy Floors Last?

    Epoxy Flooring

    Epoxy flooring is a popular choice for many industrial uses such as manufacturing plants, commercial garages and warehouses. Because these types of environments see a great deal of floor traffic, they must carefully choose the material they use in order to maximize their budget and ensure the highest productivity. Epoxy flooring is affordable, easy to maintain and highly durable. One of the most common questions that is asked when the person charged with the job of researching the different materials available for their company's flooring is its longevity.

    Epoxy Coating and Epoxy Paint: What's the Difference?

    There is a great deal of difference between epoxy coating and epoxy paint. They do have one primary similarity though, and that is that they are both designed to protect the floor and make it look attractive. While epoxy coating is made up of two parts: one part polyamine hardner and one part epoxy resin, epoxy paint often has little to no epoxy within it. Instead, the term "epoxy paint" has come about primarily as a marketing ploy to help meet the demands of residential customers who were looking for paint with the properties of epoxy in order to finish their garage floors.

    Epoxy Coating Explained

    Unlike paint with epoxy added into it, epoxy coating's two components must be mixed together before they can be successfully applied to the floor. Once they are combined, time is of the essence since the mixture must be used within a certain time frame. In addition, epoxy coating is limited in its use by the temperature. Unlike paint, epoxy coating does not dry. Instead it cures after a certain period of time, creating a highly durable and hard surface that can withstand a great deal of use and weight.

    Lifespan of Epoxy Flooring

    Epoxy flooring can be a cost-effective flooring solution that is ideal for many industrial and commercial applications. The secret to a long-lasting industrial floor is to start with a high-quality material such as epoxy. Once it has been properly applied and cured, the key is to maintain it correctly. With these requirements met, it is not unexpected for epoxy flooring to last for many years.

    If you are charged with choosing a flooring material for your company, consider epoxy flooring from Liquid Floors. Serving all of southeastern United States, we encourage you to contact us today with any questions or for a free consultation.


    5 Signs of an Improper Epoxy Coating Installation

    Installation Process of Epoxy Floor Coating

    Professional epoxy floor installers should always take the time to inspect your floors and prepare the surface prior to the installation of your epoxy coating. Failure to perform this simple task can leave you with floors that do not meet your expectations. Improperly installed epoxy coatings can severely reduce your floor's useful life.

    Common Problems with Improperly Installed Epoxy Coatings

    • Air Bubbles
    • Hard Lumps
    • Peeling
    • Surface Degradation

    Bubbles in the Coating

    Concrete is a porous material. This means that air can and does get into the surface. If the floor isn't properly prepared, primed and sealed, the air will come out of the concrete during the curing phase of the installation. When the epoxy coating cures, the mixture increases in temperature. This, in turn, heats the air inside the concrete, causing it to expand and create air bubbles between the concrete and the coating. If this happens you need a contractor that knows how to deal with out-gassing.

    Premature Degradation of the Surface

    Premature degradation of the surface can occur when the contractor fails to properly mix two-part epoxy coatings, uses an out-of-date product, applies the coating when the floor is below 50 degrees or uses a product that has been frozen and thawed. All of these mistakes can lead to your new epoxy floor deteriorating much faster than expected.

    Hard Lumps

    In some instances, hard lumps may be noticed after the installation of the epoxy coating. This can be caused by the contractor using dirty equipment or a low-quality roller sleeve that deposits lint or a failure to remove all dirt and sand blasting materials.

    Peeling

    All contaminates must be removed from the concrete surface prior to the epoxy coating installation, including oil, grease, chemicals, moisture and dirt. The floor should be ground with a diamond grinder or shot blasted. Epoxy coatings will never adhere properly to a floor that is not clean and free of chemicals, oil, and grease.

    Here at Liquid Floors, we are dedicated to providing you with a top quality product that is expertly installed so that you can enjoy your new floors for the entirety of their useful life. Our professional installers will take the time to properly prepare your concrete floors, mix the coating and apply it to your floors. To schedule a free consultation, contact Liquid Floors today!


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