The epoxy surface is not suitable for all types of industry. It is common to find surfaces that initially looked very good, but over time end up with multiple patches due to the continuous repairs they need. The question we have answered in this article is can epoxy floor be removed after application due to its hard.
These patches are almost always applied without proper surface preparation. For this reason repairs are continuous, without obtaining a lasting result and compromising the concrete slab to its deterioration.
Therefore, it is generally necessary to perform the complete removal of epoxy coating on all concrete floors that have had some type of epoxy coating.
The removal eliminates all the pre-existing floor coating as well as its imperfections. It also prepares the floor for subsequent polishing.
The procedure uses specially manufactured abrasives, ensuring good results in surface preparation.
It is important to perform a complete epoxy floor removal when carrying out renovation or repair work on a concrete floor, especially those requiring the replacement of epoxy flooring. it is necessary to remove all existing coating. This task is carried out with concrete grinding machines by means of a grinding process.
Unlike a traditional concrete floor, it is not enough to repair damaged areas of the floor. The procedure for these works is different.
If the epoxy coating is replaced only in the damaged areas, more and more cracks will continue to appear. Therefore we always recommend replacing the entire epoxy floor.
TYPES OF FLOOR COATINGS
The intended use of the floor is a determining factor and the purpose for which it will be used must be clear.
When removing the surface coating for subsequent treatment, we distinguish between three different types: epoxy coating, polyurea and slurry.
They all have impermeable properties. However, it is worth analysing the nature of each of them in more detail in order to understand the disadvantages when, for example, it is necessary to replace an epoxy floor.
Epoxy coating is a viscous material that can be hardened with the application of catalysts, which change the consistency in a few hours and harden the surface.
It is recommended to wait for about a week for the surface to be ready for use.
For the pharmaceutical and food industries, epoxy coating is a flooring option, just as polished concrete is.
These industries generally choose an epoxy resin floor because of its insulating properties that protect the concrete from corrosive materials, oils and moisture.
It is a liquid material that is poured on the surface, resulting in a solid, uniform and resistant layer in a short time.
Polyurea can resist changes in environmental temperature and is often used for waterproof swimming pools, roofs and exterior concrete floors.
This insulates against moisture and protects the surface from degradation.
Perhaps the least known, slurry is a material that has a lattice-like consistency, composed of synthetic elements. It creates and guarantees a waterproof and non-slip surface.
Used mainly in car parks and playgrounds, it is chosen for its acceptable cost and ease of levelling.
MAIN PROBLEMS OF USING EPOXY RESIN FLOORS
Epoxy floors have several disadvantages, either because of its faulty application, due to some crack in the floor or other factors that have not been taken into account at the time of applying the resin.
Because of the high cost of the resin itself, the minimum thicknesses are not always respected.
The thickness of an epoxy floor is, in most cases, the reason why the surface does not have a long life span according to the manufacturer’s specifications.
Poor preparation of the concrete floor
Floor preparation is an expensive task. It takes place every time a resin floor needs to be coated. The old epoxy coating has to be removed with a grinding machine with special abrasives before re-coating a floor.
This procedure generates a considerable amount of toxic waste. If the surface is not properly prepared, the coating will not adhere properly and will lead to delamination in a short time.
Presence of humidity
Epoxy is excellent as a waterproofing agent against almost any liquid that can be spilled on the floor surface.
Despite this, humidity is a major enemy. Moisture present in a concrete slab cannot evaporate through the surface. For this reason, it locates the place with the least resistance, the joints and cracks in the floor.
Those are areas where the epoxy resin usually starts to crack, because the support to which it is adhered is wet.
Epoxy resins are toxic materials and very harmful to health. Applicators usually have short application periods to avoid respiratory problems.
In addition, the long drying time is another factor that can harm business activities.
The toxicity of resins is another factor that must be taken into account. It is harmful to both the applicators and the people in the treated area that has not yet dried.
They are difficult to clean
In warehouses, logistics platforms or surfaces in general with high vehicle traffic, cleaning and maintenance tasks become difficult to perform with very unsatisfactory results.
Tire marks leave marks on the epoxy floor and cannot be removed. In addition, small repairs can paralyse activities in the affected area for several days.
About Epoxy Oilserv
Epoxy Oilserv is a company with international status operating in Nigeria, West Africa and an office in the United States of America, We have office locations in all major Nigeria cities, covering the remaining part of Nigeria with our capable distributors. Our mission is to provide optimal, timely, and quality goods and services, in a safe and, environmentally friendly manner to the oil and gas power, and petrochemical industries.
How to remove Epoxy floor coating
Some epoxies, like Epochem epoxy resin mixed with the catalysts can cure in a matter of minutes, so you’ll need to work fast to remove it. Soak a clean cloth with either acetone/nail polish remover, white vinegar or methylated spirit and use it to wipe away the epoxy before it has dried, because in its dry state, you may need some physical force to remove it which may not be desirable.
If the epoxy has hardened it will be more difficult to get off – but it’s far from impossible. Below are simple ways to remove hardened epoxies:
- Use acetone. Soak a clean cloth or rag with acetone/nail polish remover and press it down on the hardened epoxy for several minutes until it softens. If you can’t rub it away with the cloth, use a plastic scraper to gently remove it.
- Use paint thinner. If you haven’t got any acetone/nail polish remover, paint thinner is a good alternative. Again, soak a a clean cloth or rag with it and hold down on the hardened epoxy, until it’s soft enough to scrape or wipe away.
- Apply heat gun from a heat gun. Protecting yourself with a mask, goggles and inflammable gloves, as well as long sleeves, set a heat gun to around 90 degrees Celsius and target the hardened epoxy. Once it starts to soften, you can then use a plastic scraper to remove it.
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