Polyurethane flooring and its types (Part II)

Differences between polyurethane flooring and epoxy flooring

In general, polyurethane and epoxy flooring are the most widely used coating materials in Iran and even globally, but the differences between the two types of flooring have sometimes led to very different uses. As a general comparison between the properties of the two floors, it should be said that polyurethane flooring has better light and abrasion resistance, but its hardness is less. Of course, this has led to the misconception in this industry that polyurethane flooring can be applied to cracks due to its softness if the hardness of this flooring is not suitable.
The better abrasion resistance of polyurethane flooring is actually due to its greater elasticity, which causes it to absorb some of the applied force. On the other hand, since this flooring has more light resistance, it is a better choice for outdoor use, and unlike epoxy flooring, it does not face the problem and phenomenon of gypsum.
Other differences between polyurethane and epoxy flooring are due to their resistance and behavior against chemicals. Polyurethane flooring, for example, has a very good resistance to lactic acid, which makes it a much better choice in the food industry, such as dairy. At the same time, epoxy corrodes and turns yellow when exposed to lactic acid. On the other hand, epoxy flooring is much better resistant to sulfuric acid than polyurethane. For this reason, it is recommended to use epoxy to cover the floor in centers and industries such as battery making.
Finally, polyurethane flooring is much more sensitive to the presence of moisture because isofluids react quickly with the slightest amount of moisture and overshadow the process.

Application of polyurethane flooring

  • Suitable for covering workshops and factories.
  • It is a great option for surface coatings that are exposed to a lot of impacts.
  • Suitable for gym flooring.
  • Suitable for warehouse flooring
  • It can be used on hospital and clinic floors
  • It can be used in structures that are under stress.
  • Suitable for commercial and store flooring
  • Suitable for flooring of public parking lots and houses

In general, polyurethane flooring or polyurethane flooring is easy to clean, and maintenance costs are very low. Like industrial epoxy flooring, the polyurethane flooring system consists of three main layers: primer, middle layer, and a final layer of polyurethane coating.

Polyurethane flooring and its types
Polyurethane flooring and its types

Effect of moisture on running polyurethane flooring resin

As mentioned throughout the article, epoxy resin floors are also sensitive to moisture, but the damage caused by moisture is much less than that of polyurethane; Therefore, using epoxy flooring is a better choice when working in humid environments can be a constant issue.
Polyurethane flooring can be easily modified to increase or decrease its curing period. This flexibility enables contractors to make rooms with polyethylene flooring in a much shorter time. In general, epoxy flooring has less flexibility than polyurethane, which means that its curing period is known, and it usually takes 7 days to complete.
It should be noted that the implementation of polyurethane flooring is also more difficult because polyurethane flooring with a limited curing period and high sensitivity to moisture requires experienced and trained executives.
Finally, suppose you want to know which resin flooring is cheaper. In that case, there is no definite answer because there are different types of epoxy flooring and polyurethane flooring products on the market today. It does not make much sense to compare epoxy flooring with polyurethane flooring because ultimately choosing the right flooring for you should not be based on price and which of the two is cheaper, but which of the two floors will meet your needs should be the criterion.

Equipment needed to install polyurethane flooring

  • Masks, gloves, shoes, and other safety equipment
  • Ventilation roller
  • Comb and flat spatula
  • Surface preparation equipment
  • Mechanical stirrer
  • Spray
  • Execution roller for installing flooring

How to install polyurethane flooring

The application of polyurethane flooring is similar to epoxy flooring in terms of application steps. Still, the main difference is the high sensitivity of this flooring to the presence of moisture in the environment. The same sensitivity makes it impossible to apply polyurethane flooring to surfaces such as concrete because the moisture in the concrete causes the polyurethane to foam.
Therefore, in most applications, before applying polyurethane, the initial layer (primer) and the middle epoxy are applied, and only as of the last layer, polyurethane flooring is used. In this case, the steps of domestic resin flooring can be described as follows:

  1. Surface preparation

The desired surface should be hard and smooth; by performing the surface preparation process, cracks and surface defects will be opened.

  1. Apply epoxy primer

As mentioned in the description of epoxy flooring, epoxy resin flooring for homes is applied to the surface as a uniform layer without any additives and diluted with solvent.

  1. Run the middle layer

The main task of this layer is to create mechanical strength and adhesion to apply the next layers, so epoxy flooring is mixed with silica and applied. Polyurethane has good chemical adhesion to epoxy, but silica spray also contributes to better mechanical adhesion.

  1. Priming

After applying the middle layer, the plastering operation is performed to eliminate the floor’s appearance, including cracks and pores.

  1. Apply the final layer of polyurethane

After the epoxy flooring is applied to the primer and the middle layer and the middle layer is sprayed with silica, the final layer of topcoat will be the polyurethane flooring, which gives the final surface higher abrasion resistance and flexibility.
Of course, using this method has two important conditions that must be considered:
Polyurethane flooring should be applied within 24 to 72 hours after applying the epoxy flooring and should not exceed this time limit. As mentioned, the middle layer must be sprayed with silica to provide mechanical adhesion and chemical adhesion.
If you need more information, contact our resin flooring company .

Photo Credit: Adobe Stock

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