The Pros and Cons of Epoxy Floors




ArmourFlo specialists enjoy helping our customers make informed decisions about their flooring solutions, and this post offers the essential pros and cons of epoxy floors for residential and commercial use. No flooring system is perfect, but the advantages of epoxy resin for industrial and commercial facilities and residential use outnumber those of other flooring types. Epoxy floor coatings are a leading floor solution for contractors, architects, facility managers, and residential property owners.  

Pro: A Cost-Saving Flooring System

When you consider the pros and cons of epoxy floors, epoxy floor coatings have a low cost per square foot compared to many other forms of flooring. The epoxy system can be installed directly over existing concrete without installing a separate floor system. While the initial cost of epoxy is higher than some alternatives like concrete polishing, epoxy flooring has a low lifecycle cost compared to other solutions. The replacement cost is lower because the concrete substrate does not need to be prepared, and when the epoxy topcoat eventually wears out, there is a minimal cost to apply a new topcoat. 

Pro: Excellent Damage Resistance

Commercial epoxy floor coatings are customized to meet high industry safety standards, and be highly resistant to most hazards, including cleaners, gas, oil, transmission fluid, impact, weight, and even most industrial chemicals. Along with resisting damage from chemicals, an epoxy coating is water-resistant and heat-resistant. It won’t crack, peel, or erode like laminate, wood, or other flooring types. 

Additionally, epoxy flooring has many options for added top coatings (such as urethane) that increase its strength and durability. As a result, an epoxy floor is an excellent choice for residential areas and high-demand environments like auto shops, factories, labs, medical facilities, and retail stores.

Pro: Fire Resistance

Epoxy can withstand temperatures below 0° and over 140° Fahrenheit and is resistant to fire damage, making epoxy an excellent choice for indoor and outdoor use. 

Pro: Long Durability

Epoxy’s resilience is a big selling point for facility managers, business owners, and homeowners who want a low-cost and sustained flooring solution. Epoxy basement floor coatings can easily last decades, while professional commercial epoxy floor coatings can last for 7 to 20+ years, depending on how they are customized. Unfortunately, industrial epoxy flooring is often exposed to frequent vehicle traffic, chemicals, and heavy loads, making it more susceptible to having the lowest lifespan. Still, these factors can be offset with unique customizations in the flooring solution. 

Pro: Customization

You can achieve the precise look you want with epoxy floor coatings. Epoxy flooring can include unique and beautiful effects like flake flooring, geometric patterns, logos, metallic epoxy flooring, and almost limitless color options. You can customize epoxy flooring with the design or pattern of your choice, which makes it an ideal solution for home basements, garages, retail stores, and shopping centers. Epoxy striping and warnings also improve safety and foot traffic in commercial and industrial properties.

Con: Difficulty Adhering in Moist Environments

An epoxy basement floor is an economical solution for home flooring because it’s seamless, easy to clean, attractive, and resists moisture. The basement concrete slab needs to be appropriately dried and prepared so the epoxy should adhere correctly. Unfortunately, basements with moisture problems provide difficulty. The epoxy may lift off the floor in basements with chronic moisture issues.

Con: Slippery Without Non-Slip Additive

Epoxy flooring isn’t as slippery as it looks. The texture can be easily customized by including a skid-resistant additive to the topcoat that makes the floor very safe, even wet. However, epoxy flooring can become very slippery when wet without a nonslip additive, especially with oil spills.

Con: Temporary Application Fumes

During the epoxy application process, wet epoxy gives off an odor similar to wet paint for the first eight hours. Still, any smell disappears once the epoxy fully cures after 5-8 days. Thoroughly ventilate the area receiving an epoxy application to protect any persons near the space from fumes.

Con: Curing Time

Epoxy floor applications usually take 8-24 hours to dry after installation, and we complete most flake and solid color epoxy installations within the same day. Installation of epoxy flooring systems takes 3-7 days to cure completely, depending on the type of epoxy coating and the intensity of the project. However, after eight hours, foot traffic can occur from applying epoxy in smaller residential areas such as garages and basements. Handcrafted metallic epoxy can take 3-5 days to install. The curing time can be an inconvenience if applying the epoxy flooring inside the home or business where there may typically be much foot traffic or if you are located in a humid climate, as this will increase drying time.

What questions do you have after reading the pros and cons of epoxy floors? Contact us today to discuss your needs.