Tagged: epoxy coatings

Coating Epoxy Floors – Epoxies and Urethanes 

Have you ever tried using a combo shampoo/conditioner? You know the product that claims to be able to shampoo and condition all in one step; saving you time, money and be the cure-all for your hair cleansing needs? Well maybe if you have a crew cut this is a great fit, but anyone with longer hair, who has tried this method, knows it doesn’t work. The product, rather than being good at anything, kind of stinks at both. It neither cleans that well nor conditions the hair. For the best results you shampoo and then condition. It’s a two-step process.

The same is true in epoxy floor systems. Some claim that epoxy is the best top coat, some say urethane is the best, and yet some marketing claims that their new poly, -aspartic or -urea, is 10X stronger and does the work of both. (Whenever I see this, I always think of the elixirs of the early 1900’s.)

In our commercial epoxy broadcast systems, we double topcoat our floors. Yes, a double topcoat. We coat with epoxy, wait and then coat over the systems again with a urethane.

The 1st Topcoat 
After a broadcast, the floor needs a topcoat to encapsulate the chip or sand media and offer a way to ‘seal’ the floor. The tried and true method of a UV-stable, 100% solids epoxy seems to offer the best in this area. 100% solids fill in the voids, offers additional build and can provide a nice clean installation. Urethanes are not recommended here because they are applied in thinner applications. Whereas an epoxy may be installed in a coat of 12-16 mils and maintain that thickness when cured, a urethane will need to be installed somewhere 3-6 mils and after curing be 2-4 mils thick. This can ‘look’ good at installation but fails to offer the needed impact resistant, and the ability of the floor to be protected against a possible dig into the floor. The epoxy ‘locks’ the floor together, wherein the urethane just offers a protective film. The long-term consequence of only using a urethane is that in time the broadcast media can break free and start to disintegrate or peel away from the floor system.

If the floor is not exposed to commercial traffic flow, or if someone wants to cut the budget, you can finish the floor here. Leaving only the 100% solids epoxy body coat. The long-term downfall here is the floor can wear traffic patterns where there is heavy traffic; think front door, entrance to a kitchen, or bathroom foyers. The floor is also limited in its finish options. A gloss finish is the only available option with 100% solids.

The 2nd Topcoat 
This is where urethane can shine, literally, if you choose a gloss finish, or can also mute a floor to a satin finish, or even add some slip-resistance in a wet area like a wash bay or shower. Urethanes are best applied in thinner coats 4-6 mils. When built on top of an epoxy floor, urethanes offer a coating that is less scuff and scratch resistant. Urethanes by nature are also more UV stable and can provide a protective film to the long-term color stability of the floor. Most of all, they just add long-term durability and more selective finish options for your application.

So next time the marketing world tells you that you can shampoo/condition in one step, or sell you a paint that is a primer/paint all-in-one. Just ask, is this really the most effective way to proceed? Does this actually produce the results I want?

Of course, if we can help with one of your projects, or you have more questions, need samples. or want to chat epoxy, please reach out. We are here to help and are grateful to be part of your project.

Get a GRIP on it!

One of the biggest concerns of our clients is a slip-resistant surface.  When we use urethane for the flooring treatment, there are several options available to create a slip-resistant finish.  The information below is for smooth coatings such as a clear urethane sealer or a tinted urethane sealer as part of an epoxy floor coating. For information about slip resistance on polished concrete floors, click here.

The grit used in our final urethanes is a fine grade aluminum oxide additive. This additive is mixed integrally with the catalyzed urethane resulting in a fully encapsulated mixture for long-term durability.  This grit offers better traction than a standard finish and is a must in wet areas such as a shower, kitchen, or a wash area. The grip additive is ideal for areas that are subject to the constant presence of liquids such as showers but isn’t always suitable for areas that have brief spills such as garages and locker rooms.

The grit additive seems like it would be a good fit to use for most slip-resistant surface applications, ie. safety requirements. It will, however, retain dirt as opposed to a surface that does not have the slip resistant application.  The floor surface is smooth enough to mop and clean but may need some additional cleanings or a more aggressive method (such as spraying, or scrubbing) to achieve a pristine look. The grit additive is only available in the Satin finish but once mixed and applied it will have a more matte appearance.

When deciding whether or not to use the grip or not, it’s best to have our design team review with you and assess the liquids used in the area and the safety standards that are required or essential to you. Physical samples of each option are available during this review.  The finishes available in a urethane sealed system include Gloss, Satin, Satin w/ Grip (matte sheen).

Summary of Grip Additive in Urethane Topcoats

  • Increased Safety and Slip Coefficient
  • A must for wet areas
  • Can track dirt and require more aggressive cleaning methods such as scrubbing with a rotary scrubber or manual deck brush.
  • Satin w/ Grip (matte sheen)
  • Other grip options are available in epoxy systems such as sand broadcast.
  • No cost upgrade


By Abigail Reuille 

When thinking about starting your upcoming flooring project, the first logical step is to gather a few different quotes from a few different companies. This allows you to understand your project more thoroughly, feel out the professionalism of each company, and to determine which numbers will work with your budget. We agree with all of this – discovering all of your options is always helpful and allows you to understand the full scope of your project.

What we disagree on is that all floors are created equal. When you get a quote from Dancer Concrete Design, we want you to understand that our chip epoxy broadcast floors are above the industry standard and beyond the floor you will receive if you were to choose a competitor. Our professional in-house craftsmen install top-quality, guaranteed floors. The chart below will prove that our products and chip epoxy floor installations are superior to the competition.

Breakdown of Products for a 1,000 SF Chip Epoxy Floor Project

Dancer Concrete
Design Broadcast
Competitors’ Broadcasts
Preparation Full preparation.
Completely preps the surface.
Grinding to scratch surface.
Leaves dark spots during prep.
Joint Fill Seamless options available. Joints left open.
Primer 5 Gallons. Penetrating epoxy. No primer. Primer and Body are one coat.
This can end up being problematic.
Body Coat 5 Gallons. 100% pigmented solids. 2.25 Gallons.
Chip Media 150 lbs. 500 standard blends
+ custom blends available.
75 lbs. 6-8 stock color options available.
Top Coat UV top coat. 8.5 Gallons. 5 Gallons.
Finishing Optional Urethane High-Wear
Topcoat. 2.5 Gallons.