Epoxy flooring is a fantastic solution to your commercial flooring problems. It’s durable and strong, looks great, and is safe for all sorts of different applications (it can be made to be non-skid, for example.)
However, despite being such an effective material, it can be fickle. To be a true epoxy, it must be made using a specific ratio of resin and activator, and it also must be applied under certain conditions. Even one tiny slip up can degrade the quality of the product.
Unfortunately, if you already have problems with your epoxy floor, chances are you will need to replace it. There aren’t a lot of “spot fixes” when it comes to epoxy flooring. At McClean Company, we are experts at epoxy flooring, and so we can help you get your surfaces looking tip-top once again.
But before we do, here are some of the most common problems that can occur, as well as some information on how to prevent them so that you can avoid having to replace your epoxy flooring down the road.
The Main Epoxy Flooring Problems and How to Fix/Prevent Them
Hopefully, you used a high-quality epoxy flooring company to install your floor, and so you don’t need to read the following sections. But just in case you didn’t, here are the most common problems that can occur, as well as some tips on how to prevent them from happening to you.
One of the most common epoxy flooring problems you can encounter is discoloration. When applied correctly, epoxy looks smooth and clean. And it also comes in a range of colors and styles so that you can match it to your business’ aesthetic. But if not applied correctly, it looks bad.
If your epoxy flooring is discolored, the problem likely started with the mixing of the resin and the activator or hardener. Each epoxy is made up of a different combination of these two materials, and they must be left to meld before application.
Discoloring can occur if this combination is wrong or if the mixture is left for too long. It can also occur if the epoxy is exposed to certain chemicals, such as carbon monoxide, or sunlight while drying.
Prevent this from happening to you by working with a reputable epoxy flooring company from the get-go.
As you probably know, moisture can be a real pain when working with commercial construction materials. Well, things are no different when it comes to epoxy flooring.
In this case, if moisture is present when you apply the epoxy, it can prevent it from adhering correctly, causing peeling or other issues. More commonly, though, it will cause the color of the epoxy to be off.
Once moisture gets between the epoxy and the floor, it’s pretty much too late. There’s no way to remove it. So, to prevent this from happening to you, it’s imperative you make sure the surface is completely dry before you apply the epoxy. But this isn’t really your job. It’s the applicator’s, which is why it’s so important to hire a professional epoxy flooring installation company, such as McClean Company, when undertaking projects like these.
Another very common problem that can occur with epoxy floors is peeling. This is perhaps the worst thing that can happen, for there’s really no way around it — if the floor is discolored or has moisture, it’s still serviceable. But if it starts to peel, then you lose all the benefits of epoxy flooring, and it won’t be long before the whole thing is gone.
The main reason why an epoxy floor peels is because the surface underneath was not properly prepared. Either it wasn’t clean, wasn’t dry, or wasn’t the right temperature. Or, the applicator did not do enough to ensure the epoxy would stick.
For example, when working on smooth concrete, you must rough it up first using a grinder. This tool does just what it sounds like it does — it grinds up the concrete. This creates a surface that is more receptive to the epoxy.
If this isn’t the problem, then the next likely scenario is that the epoxy was applied when it was either too warm or too cold. As we said, epoxy is fickle. It must be applied between temperatures of 65-85°F. Any higher or lower and it will probably peel.
Also, if the epoxy is applied to a dirty surface, it’s also likely to peel. Whoever is installing your epoxy flooring should clean the floor before they start working, but give them a hand by sweeping and cleaning in the days leading up to installation. This will ensure your floor is spotless and ready to receive your epoxy.
Bubbles, Blisters, and Craters
The last major issue you might encounter with epoxy flooring are bubbles, blisters, and craters. Bubbles are the smallest, whereas blisters are much larger. Craters are blisters that pop. All three are ugly and can compromise the integrity of your floor.
Once again, the culprit behind these issues is poor installation. Applying epoxy to an excessively smooth surface, improper mixing of the resin and activator, dirty floors, moisture, and improper temperature can all cause bubbles, blisters, and craters.
If you have bubbles, your floor is still okay. But it will need to be replaced soon. For those already dealing with blisters and craters, unfortunately, you will need to call in a professional to help you install a new floor before things get worse and you risk damaging the underlying surface.
Solve Your Epoxy Flooring Problems Today
As you can see, there are a lot of things that can go wrong with your epoxy flooring. But as you can also see, all of these problems arise as a result of poor installation. This is good news because it means you can avoid all this hassle by simply working with the right epoxy flooring company from the beginning.
At McClean Company, we’ve installed countless epoxy floors and have several professionals on staff who will be able to determine the best installation method that will ensure your product lasts.
If you need to fix your current epoxy flooring, or you want to install it new, get in touch today. We’re here to help!