The grey epoxy floors normally used in an industrial or commercial space are becoming a thing of the past with people wanting something a little different, unique and custom-made which provides the opportunity for new designs and influences on a floor.
According to Ian Harrison, Managing Director at Technical Finishes, people want uniqueness and the opportunity to design a floor to their specifications. “We offer a comprehensive product range including specialist industrial epoxy and HACCP approved polyurethane anti-microbial flooring systems.” Some of the trends are low-maintenance hardwearing floors with a quick turnaround time so that the installation goes quickly. Technical Finishes also offers decorative self-levelling overlays, decorative epoxy systems such as metallic epoxies and new trending bio-based polyurethane and polyaspatic resin systems that offer quick cure and turnaround on installation.
Ian says that some of the key issues and challenges currently in the industrial flooring industry post the Covid impact of 2020 is the drastic global price increase in raw materials. “Surprisingly, demand has been strong in the flooring industry and encouraging to see. Global shortages in raw materials and shipping issues remain a challenge and this will continue to impact the industry. We remain positive about the demand for new projects and infrastructure roll out and hope that prices and supply issues have now normalised.
“As suppliers it is essential that the necessary information about pricing and global trends is communicated to the marketplace. Technical Finishes prides itself on quality high-performance products, and believes it is critical that pricing and specifications are not compromised to meet cheap or outdated pre-Covid pandemic pricing,” comments Ian.
Specific innovations and trends currently are clients wanting something different and exclusive – even bespoke. “We listen to our clients and what they want in designs and offer something different and unique. For example, our custom designed Polyscreed GHF Terrazzo has been a big win for us in both commercial and industrial applications. Designing systems for clients according to their colour requirements and corporate branding is one of our unique solutions.
During 2021, we definitely saw a strong trend towards designing custom-made flooring to meet the unique requirements of various corporate clients.
The demand in the food and beverage industry keeps growing and this is where our focus is. After 30 years, we can confidently offer peace of mind and tick all the boxes – durability, customisation, performance and ISO 9001 quality.
Trends to watch
Some trends we are seeing from our international travels include a drive towards focussing on sustainability using environmentally-friendly solvent-free systems and high-speed curing systems for quick “return to service applications.
Valuable tips to guarantee coating success
According to Peter Jones, National Sales Manager: Flooring for a.b.e. Construction Chemicals, it is essential to do the right things at the right time to ensure a successful flooring installation. “So many basic mistakes are made at the installation site that could be rectified by following practical knowledge.” Being in the industry for more than two decades, he has in-depth knowledge of products and what works best in each application scenario.
Peter shares some prized tips to guarantee coating success:
If the installer approaches the work neatly and methodically, even before the job starts, such as organising tools and products in the order of application, the job can be done without interruption or a shortage of products. Have a neat well-planned mixing station. Put down mats or carpets to avoid your team from carrying unwanted dirt onto the prepared substrate.
Plan adequately before the job begins. It is advantageous to plan from start to finish and to plan properly. If it is a big surface that cannot be completed in one day, end on an expansion joint or door so that you can proceed effortlessly the following day.
Clean tools are essential
Clean mixing equipment, rakes and rollers thoroughly after each use to avoid the build-up of material, otherwise you could end up with costly errors such as flaking or releasing cured pieces of epoxy on the final product.
Time the job
Measuring each and every mix is essential to avoid colour variations. Take note of the time to allow proper curing.
Scrape all the pigment from the packaging to prevent the risk of extreme colour variation. It is possible that you may be unable to match the mix of the subsequent batches. An option is to order the same product batch when working on large installations.
Protect the work area
Mark and protect the floor and the surrounding passageways so that people cannot walk on the floor and bring dust particles onto the site.
Protect other trades
Mask the wall to waist height to protect work areas of other trades and avoid leaving spray marks on the surrounding areas.
Do not rush
It is essential to adhere to the product’s recommended curing time of, for example, a minimum of 48 hours before attempting to walk on the floor. Full curing will be after seven days.
Acknowledgement and thanks go to www.abe.co.za and www.technicalfinishes.com for the information contained in this editorial.
Photo Credit: Technical Finishes
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