White epoxy floor coatings are increasing in popularity. Retail stores, hotels and designer outlets are specifying seamless white floors for many new projects. Flooring companies are eager to take on such challenging projects, but they need to be aware of the difficulties that are associated with white floors compared to (for example) standard gray floor coatings.
The main difficulties that I have identified over the years are as follows:
1. Detecting problems during the application phase. White coloured resins (while still wet) have a tendency to trick the eye and hide potential problems. Little bubbles, trapped dirt, spatula marks may not be easily detectable when working on a white floor. You can have all your workers inspecting the floor during application and no-one will notice the problem. The next day the entire crew is scratching its head and wondering how these little details were not visible during the application. Therefore good lighting and double checking of the floor during installation is crucial.
2. White epoxy floor coatings often have viscosity issues. In order to achieve this snow-white look in the coating, the product has been specifically formulated with whitening pigments. These fillers may make the colour of the floor look magnificent but they can be a detriment when it comes to enabling proper flow and leveling of the product. In fact over the years most leveling problems that I have experienced has been with white floors. Therefore it is important to keep this in mind during the application. You may need to improve the thixotropy and flow of the product with other methods. (One method would be to add solvent, which could however lead to more trapped air and bubbles – See point 1 above)
3. White floors are unforgiving after they have cured. Once the floor is put into operation it has a tendency to pick up dust and dirt immediately. Every little abnormality in the coating will become visible. Bubbles and trowel marks that were not addressed during the coating phase may now look like ugly black spots.
If you want to learn more about white epoxy floors watch this video below!
What about your experiences when working with such coatings? Are there any other problems specifically related to white epoxy floors that you would like to add to this list?