Applying warehouse floor coatings requires planning and expertise before, during and after the actual product application. Failures in surface analysis and preparation, product selection, application technique, dry time and maintenance procedures can, and do, cause coatings to fail.
Contact a professional coatings applier early in your project’s planning stages. Your applier will be able to assess your project’s needs, compare them to the known strengths and weaknesses of available products, and recommend an appropriate system. If your floor will be subject to forklift traffic, a professional will recommend an epoxy or urethane, not an acrylic. If you need to hose down your floor (especially if there is any chance that workers or other personnel may end up walking on it while wet), you will need a slip-resistant elastomeric. The amount and type of cleaning your floor will need to support and the environmental conditions involved in its application will also factor into the choice of products and procedures.
Understanding your current floor is crucial. Your substrate needs to be properly cured and its pH levels and moisture levels analyzed. A professional will:
(1) determine the presence and nature of any sealer, curing compounds and hardeners present, most commonly by running an acid test on your substrate
(2) run an anhydrous calcium chloride test to determine the level of water vapor pressure present (Your system will withstand 3.0 to 3.5 lbs of pressure at best.)
(3) determine whether your surface has impurities in or on its surface (laitance)
(4) choose a profiling method that will remove them
(5) analyze the ambient conditions of your space, since the range of air temperature and humidity present will affect drying time, curing time and the overall stability and quality of your finish
(6) inspect the surface for cracks, divots and other flaws