Issues with Epoxy Floor Coatings

February 11, 2011

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Although epoxy floor coatings are popular for flooring applications because of their excellent strength and adhesion capabilities, they are not exempted from vulnerabilities and sometimes, issues.

For example, epoxy floor coatings may carry health-threatening agents in their formulation. A point in case is bisphenol A, a compound found in epoxy resins, which is currently being analyzed as a possible health hazard. Epoxy floor coatings based on solvent often contain high levels of VOCs and toxic chemicals which are harmful to the environment and to workers.

On the technical side, epoxy floor coatings have to maintain close-to-accurate mixing ratio for its components, because an inconsistent mix ratio can change the paint property to a very noticeable degree, particularly around curing time. Applicators have to follow manufacturer’s recommendations to maintain a consistent density for epoxy floor coatings. The same is true with its pot-life, which can vary with inconsistent mixing, and can change the texture and viscosity of the formulation.

Epoxy floor coatings are also vulnerable to UV rays and can be unstable when UV-exposed. A top coat of Titanium dioxide or other pigments need to be used to help block the UV rays from reaching the epoxy floor coatings.

Temperature also has a critical impact to epoxy floor coatings, with a higher temperature increasing reaction rates during mixing, curing and the overall pot-life. The converse is true, and the lower temperatures can also lower reaction rates with adverse results. It is important to handle epoxy floor coatings at just the right temperatures, to avoid problems.

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