When you see a beautiful floor in a showroom, restaurant or any other place, that looks unique and elegant, you are probably looking at a floor that has been covered with a metallic epoxy coating.
Metallic epoxy floors are those that have been covered with an epoxy that is low yellowing and has a metallic pigment mixed in. These metallic pigments give glitter to the floor, and when mixed with the epoxy allow them to be poured on to floors or any other substrate.
After the mixture is poured on to the floor, it is agitated with a roller or paintbrush, the metallic pigments will twist, separate or gather to allow light to be reflected off them at different angles. As the epoxy hardens, these pigments are locked into place, while their elements give the floor a three-dimensional look that has swirls in them.
The technique of installation is what gives the final look to a floor, and is very critical in imparting any desired look to the metallic epoxy floors. It is not only the aesthetics that give these floors their advantages, but they impart many other properties that are significant.
They are extremely durable, do not yellow, can be seamless, while they are also microbial, resistant to chemicals and slip-resistant. As a result, they meet many performance needs in places like waiting rooms, restaurants, galleries, showrooms and other places that have large footfalls, and an urgent need for hygiene.
Metallic epoxy floors need to be installed on flat and clean surfaces and concrete surfaces are the best for this. The surface should be ground so that it can be made ready for the epoxy application. There must be no uneven surfaces or holes or any dust creating situations, as epoxy is very sensitive to these conditions. Thorough cleaning and wiping must be carried out at all stages of the installation process.
Once the substrate surface is prepared and made ready, it needs to be coated with an epoxy primer. The primer will help in ensuring adhesion between the floor and the metallic coating system. It can always help if the substrate is dark, as this brings out the reflective nature of the metallic epoxy floor.
If the floor is not dark, colors like gold and bronze will not show up well, while colors like white, silver and blue will just not look good. Create a black base with any good paint or any other coating that must meet the standards suggested by the maker of metallic epoxy coatings.
Metallic coatings have three components, the clear resin component of the epoxy, its hardener and the component that has the metallic glitter. This last component can be in the form of a powder or paste, though powders are to be preferred.
The mixing of all these three components has to be done very slowly as any fast mixing can lead to the formation of air bubbles that are difficult to remove. You can use one color or a combination of colors, but every color must be mixed separately in its own epoxy pack.
Apply the coating as per the suggested coverage. Thicker coatings can hide the metallic effect, while lesser amounts can result in coverage problems.
The product of the metallic epoxy coating must be spread evenly with the right tools and must be uniform throughout the surface being covered.
Be very careful to see that there are no dirt and dust particles in the coating, and to ensure this it is necessary to see that you take a lot of care in maintaining dust-free conditions in the area. Topcoats applied must be clear though such coats are strictly not necessary.