Epoxy and Urethane Concrete Coatings for Floors

What are Epoxy Resin Concrete Coatings?

Epoxy resin, decorative concrete floor in a garage

Epoxy resin products come in a variety of colors and textures to create a decorative floor coating over a concrete sub-floor. The surface is durable and easy to clean, which makes a resin floor covering perfect for a garage and other high-traffic location in your home or business.   These cement coatings can rehabilitate an old concrete floor and make it look new.  Professionally applied concrete coatings can also protect the floor from further damage.  Some epoxy resin coatings meet the LEED standards for VOC off-gassing.

What is Urethane Cement?

Urethane cement, which is also referred to as polymer concrete is a combination of:

  • polymer binder (urethane)
  • fillers (cement and aggregate)

Urethane cements can be used in floor coating systems. Urethane cement coatings are well known for their chemical and temperature resistance making them ideal for business, manufacturing or laboratory settings.  Some urethane coatings meet the LEED standards for VOC off-gassing.

Picking a Concrete Floor Coating

epoxy resin, decorative concrete floorPeople researching concrete floor coatings often wonder whether they should use an epoxy or urethane coating for their concrete floor. The answer in many cases . . . although not all . . . is use both!

Each of these floor coatings works in a different way, performs a different function, and has advantages in particular applications. Both types of coatings:

  • provide protection against chemical corrosion, wear, and damage
  • are long-lasting and reduce replacement and maintenance costs
  • increase safety with non-slip surfaces
  • increase light reflectivity by up to 300% which lowers utility bills, brightens the work space and improves employee morale

So what is the difference between these two cement products?

  • Epoxy concrete floor coatings function more as a floor priming/resurfacing method
  • Urethane is more of a wear surface protecting the epoxy.

Here’s a brief summary of the two products:

In general, the best approach is to use an epoxy coating to build up floors and then urethane to seal and protect them. With urethane as a topcoat over epoxy, the floor will outlast unsealed epoxy 3:1 and you will get excellent wear and abrasion results.

Important Reminder about Emissions Tests

Before either a urethane or epoxy resin coating is applied to a concrete floor it is critical to complete a moisture emissions test.  Every manufacturer provides acceptable humidity ranges for their products which must be adhered to or the product may fail and void the product warranty. This is part of Concrete Repair Specialists process’ for every project.

Every flooring customer’s needs are unique, depending upon the particular use and desired outcome so contact us today to learn how to enhance your concrete floors.