Epoxy and polyurethane floorings are the best industrial-grade floorings. But do you know the major differences between them? I am here to here to highlight the conflicts of both floorings. So, let’s move to know about them.
The significance of the floor can’t be exaggerated. As floors can influence your home look, impact the value of your home, enhance or disrupt the functionality of your home, as well as affect your home’s health.
Both materials have strengths and properties and are well suited for different applications and industries. Though they reveal some crucial features, such as both flooring solutions are hard-wearing, tough, and offer to waterproof and defend your concrete floor from dirt and damage.
Floors with epoxy coating aid to keep the floor from abrasion. Epoxy flooring is a multi-element solution that involves careful and appropriate measurement and combining of all components. It is a defensive coating employed over concrete substrates or existing cement.
The basic definition of epoxy flooring indicates a floor consisting of several epoxy coats employed to the floor with at least two (mm) millimetres thick.
Moreover, comparing epoxy floor coating and epoxy flooring is usually puzzling. As I discussed above, the disparity between both is in the epoxy’s depth. Epoxy floors are categorized as epoxy coatings with a thickness of at least two millimetres. A floor with less than two mm (millimetres) depth is commonly called an epoxy floor coating.
Polyurethane is also referred to as PU or PUR. It is a polymer consisting of organic units attached to urethane links. Though numerous polyurethanes are thermosetting that don’t dissolve when heat up. Thermoplastic polyurethanes are also offered.
Moreover, it can protect the floor surface from any degradation and corrosion. PU may have a matte finish or lustre. This kind of floor is fire repellent. It is also repellent to scratches offered an extra coating put on the top.
A urethane floor coating or polyurethane coating is a highly adaptable, highly abrasion resilient floor coating recognized for its longevity and gloss. Farben IG developed it in 1937. These materials were utilized to prepare hard foam, gum rubber, and elastomer.
Differences Between both Floorings
So, as we discussed, the similarities between both industrial-grade flooring? But what are the key differences between them? I have listed some of them below.
When we talk about the hardness, epoxy floors are typically more complex than polyurethanes. It shows that they have more effective power and are compressive, making them sustainable in heavy-duty industries. They are preferred in heavy industries, logistics centers, warehouses, and industries including heavy forklift traffic.
In contrast, polyurethane floors are more flexible and softer, which makes them more resilient to abrasion because their flexibility absorbs some effect. Due to this, polyurethane is a great option for food factories where the temperature goes at -30 degrees or in car parks – it works as a waterproofing coating.
In addition, polyurethane floors are ideal in car parks, pedestrian traffic, and food factories.
Reaction to chemicals:
Both flooring materials react inversely to the different chemicals when they come in contact. In these cases, the colour of the epoxy floor may be yellow, and corrosion may be experienced. And it makes polyurethane a preferred choice in food production factories for its contact with lactic acid.
Furthermore, epoxy flooring is more suitable for industries that work with sulfuric acid because epoxy flooring is more tolerant than polyurethane.
Although epoxies are sensitive to humidity, the damage is more constrained to staining or colouring. It involves that in industries where moisture can be an element, epoxy coating is a safe option. On the other hand, polyurethane flooring is exceptionally sensitive to moisture.
Both epoxy and polyurethane coatings are accessible with many attractive customization options. Deciding which flooring option is the appropriate solution for your environment can be simpler with the assistance of a skilled industrial flooring expert.
Naturally, epoxy floorings are stiffer and are able to go with the concrete underlayer when subjected to heat fluctuations. Also, PU flooring provides cold, high heat, and thermal shock resilience. To illustrate this, a typical two-pack – 100% strong epoxy coating has up to 65 ° C heat resistance, while a number of PU systems can withstand 120 ° C.
This thermal shock tolerance is a huge advantage in beverage and food facilities where severe temperature fluctuations often occur daily. For instance, when the site is cleaned with steam – in areas where heated oven doors are started or where boiling material is likely to fall on the floor.
An epoxy floor forms a rapid and complex bond with the concrete beneath it. This connection presents a highly durable and smooth flooring solution that is sturdy than plain concrete. To find out if epoxy floor coating is ideal for your workplace, you can consider the load, impact, traffic, and the environment your floor will come across.
Like epoxy, polyurethane is also counted as a high-performance finishing. There are numerous applications of PU, such as it can be employed in car parks, foot traffic areas, and food & drink factories.
Polyurethane is able to be applied to these places because of its properties, including minimal maintenance, U.V stability, durability, stability, thermal stock tolerance, and some others.
Although, poxy is more economical than polyurethane flooring. But PU is far more effective in the long run. In fact, these flooring systems are almost twice as old as epoxy, which is an impressive ten years longer than epoxy five. Polyurethane flooring is also beneficial due to its increased wear, impact, and abrasion resistance properties.
Finally, I have compared both flooring solutions. But I can’t refer to any of these best for flooring. Both coatings have their own properties. But epoxy is cheaper than polyurethane. Your preference shouldn’t base on their cost. However, you can choose any which your workplace demands. I hope this comparison guide will help you to know about the dissimilarities between them.