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Whether you’re in the midst of renovating your home or are planning on newly constructing one, you’ll have many choices to make along the way—from light fixtures to flooring. If you’re looking for something durable, sanitary, and easy to clean, you may be interested in an epoxy basement floor. Fairfax, VA flooring contractors know the many benefits associated with epoxy flooring—but did you know epoxy flooring bonds on a molecular level with their substrate material (typically concrete) to create a flooring option that is both long-lasting and wildly adaptable, appearance-wise? In this article, we will explore the benefits of epoxy flooring and discuss some common circumstances where it makes sense to use this type of floor coating, and even describe how epoxy works.

What Are Epoxy Floors?

Epoxy floors are created by using a synthetic resin layered on top of a substrate material (or base), which is typically concrete—but it can be other materials as well, such as wood, tile, or laminate. Most commonly, however, it is layered on top of concrete. Epoxy floors are the result of layers of synthetic resin atop a substrate, which must be allowed to cure.

What Is Epoxy Made Of?

Epoxy floors are made of a curing agent and a polyepoxide resin that must be mixed together before they are applied to the floor. The mixture is then applied to the substrate, where it chemically bonds to its surface.

How Does Epoxy Flooring Work?

If you are considering epoxy flooring for your basement, kitchen, bathroom, or really any other room of the house, you’ll likely want to know what the process of installing it is like. First, the substrate must be prepared and, if it’s concrete, it must be allowed to cure for a certain amount of time. This is because if the surface contains too much moisture, the epoxy will have a harder time binding to the substrate and it will not cure properly.

Once the substrate has been properly prepared and passes a professional moisture test, the polyepoxide resin and curative are mixed together and applied to the surface of the concrete, often in a decorative way. This often takes several layers of resin to achieve a proper thickness.

What's the Difference Between Epoxy Flooring and Epoxy Coating?

You might think that simply applying epoxy to a substrate means you have installed epoxy flooring—but in reality, there is a distinction of two millimeters between epoxy flooring and epoxy coating. To be considered “epoxy flooring,” the finished result contains at least two millimeters of resin on top of the substrate. Anything less than this is simply considered “epoxy coating.”

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Different Types of Epoxy Floors

Epoxy flooring is almost endlessly aesthetically variable, which is one of the characteristics that makes it so popular amongst homeowners and business owners alike. There are many different styles of epoxy flooring including but not limited to:

·      Terrazzo

·      Epoxy flake

·      Electrostatic Dissipating (ESD)

·      Self-leveling epoxy

If you’re interested in learning more about the different types of epoxy flooring, check out our recent article on the topic!

Benefits of Epoxy Flooring

Aside from how visually adaptable epoxy flooring can be, there are many benefits to this type of flooring material. Some of these benefits include:

1.     Relatively fast installation: This means limited workplace or home life interruption while you wait for the resin to cure.

2.     Chemical resistance: Epoxy flooring is durable enough to resist wear from exposure to solvents and acids, which is one reason why it is so popular in applications like garages or basements.

3.     Durable: The bond between epoxy and its substrate is at a chemical level, making your epoxy floor quite resistant to wear and tear. This makes it a popular choice in commercial and industrial applications.

4.     Compatible with heated flooring options: One complaint some people have about epoxy flooring is that it can often feel cold to the touch, like tile. However, this can be mitigated by installing a heated flooring system in the substrate beneath your layers of epoxy.

5.     Seamless finish: Because epoxy flooring creates a chemical bond across the entire surface of the floor, the results are seamless and watertight. This makes cleaning, maintaining, and sterilizing your epoxy floors easy and simple, which is one reason why epoxy flooring is popular in hospitals and schools.

Because of the seamless finish epoxy provides, it is considered anti-microbial. This means it helps to deter the growth of pathogenic microorganisms like mold, bacteria, or fungi, as there are no pores, seams, or grout lines for these harmful microorganisms to thrive. Other forms of antimicrobial flooring include urethane, polyurethane, and cementitious urethane flooring, and polyaspartic flooring. Epoxy can also be applied to walls for an even more sterile environment.

Epoxy Flooring: Beyond the Basement

If you’re worried about the molds, mildews, and bacteria that can come with the dampness of an underground basement, epoxy flooring is a natural choice—but there are many other circumstances in which epoxy flooring fits the bill. Both beautiful and practical, epoxy floors are popular in the following circumstances:

·      Assisted living facilities or retirement homes

·      Veterinary offices, doggie daycare, or animal shelters

·      Airports

·      Horticulture and plant cultivation

·      Restaurants or food production facilities

·      Buildings with a lot of foot traffic, whether commercial, industrial, or governmental

·      Hospitals and other sterile environments

·      Jails

·      Laundromats

·      Offices

·      Industrial areas

·      Cold storage areas

·      Research settings

·      Museums and showrooms

Epoxy Basement Floor Fairfax, VA

Clearly, there is a wide array of circumstances in which seamless, antimicrobial, and durable epoxy flooring is the best material for the job. However, just because epoxy is practical does not mean it is boring—it comes in a variety of styles and can be simple and understated or it can be the focal point of your interior design. Versatile as it is resilient, it’s no wonder epoxy flooring solutions are becoming all the more popular in home renovations and construction projects!

If you’re looking for professionals to install your epoxy basement floor in Fairfax, VA, contact The Concrete, Etc. today for a consultation or browse our gallery of previous work!