Adequate Prep Work For Industrial Flooring – PennCoat, Inc.

There are numerous methods to address industrial flooring.  And in the picture above, the obvious method is to fix it.  But how do you accomplish that?  Do you scarify it?  Do you acid etch it?  Should you just recoat it with an atypical epoxy?

If you didn’t think to ask any of these questions, then you’re probably not in the industrial flooring business.  But if you knew of these questions, but were unsure on how to answer them, then you may be in the flooring business, but may not know the answers.  So here are the answers.

We were contacted by a juice manufacturer in Maryland.  Some of their floors had been properly installed.  However, some of their floors had been improperly installed with a thin film.  Thin film flooring (such as floor paint that you may buy at Home Depot or Lowe’s) is only adequate for foot traffic.  But in an environment that gets exposed to constant moisture, fork-lift traffic, and equipment, you’ll want to use something with a lot more gauge.

So now, this manufacturer is in a situation where they have this floor, that has an inadequate coating, that doesn’t perform to the standards that their facility demands.

So firstly, as with any flooring project, the epoxy contractor has to address how to prep the floor.  Well, in this situation, if you refer to the picture, you can see that there is an existing coating on the floor, surrounded by exposed concrete.  Based on the picture, it is evident that the perimeter of the remaining coating is lifting from the concrete.  This is probably due to exposure to water, where it seeps between the concrete and epoxy, forcing it to delaminate.  You don’t want a new resinous floor to be installed on top of that.  So the correct prep method is coating removal.

This is a picture of our walk-behind, planetary grinder.  It uses counter-rotating diamond heads that prepare the floor.  Depending on which diamond heads you use, you can either prepare existing, sound floor.  Or, you can use more aggressive diamond heads, to completely remove the existing floor.  And in the situation for this juice producer, you’ll need to remove the coating.

Here is a picture of a properly prepared floor with our walk-behind planetary grinder:

Saw Cut Perimeter Edges and around the Drain

So, after although we addressed the existing coating, there also is the perimeter edge and drain that needs to be considered.  If we were to move forward with a thin-film coating, then the installer wouldn’t have to consider keying the perimeter edges.  But since I’m going to price out a 1/4″ urethane cement trowel down, then it is important to saw cut the perimeter edge.

You’ll need to key 2 areas

  • The drains
  • The transitions

Using a floor grinder, you’ll want to remove enough concrete so that the floor gradually and incrementally declines.  This will allow the urethane cement to “anchor” into the concrete.

So in this floor area, the existing coating would need to be removed, and the perimeter and drain will need to be recessed with a keyed edges, so that the material anchors into the floor.

And that’s how you address the prep questions that you might have when looking at a damaged floor.

PennCoat, Inc. has been providing industrial painting, commercial painting, epoxy flooring, and polished concrete services for nearly 30 years.  Our experienced installers are trained and equipped with the proper knowledge and tools to ensure that every installation is installed efficiently and safely.  PennCoat, Inc. provides service to Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Maryland, and Delaware.  And we cover York, Lancaster, Philadelphia, Chester, Montgomery, Baltimore, Harrisburg, Dauphin, Bucks, Berks, and other counties in the surrounding area.

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