The Versatility of Urethane Cement

Epoxy flooring contractors are finding that urethane cement is a practical and efficient primer and resurfacer in nearly every application.

Urethane cement was introduced into the market a few decades ago.  And whether is was installed in Pennsylvania, or applied by some flooring contractors in Maryland, it was widely accepted upon reception for a few reasons.  Firstly, the most commonly used flooring material prior to urethane cement was epoxy.  Epoxy is typically a decent floor.  However, it is susceptible to osmotic blistering, ambering, and vapor transmission.

But because urethane cement is able to not only bond extraordinarily well to the concrete, it has exceptional chemical resistance.  And this chemical resistance also allows it to hold up against the sodium from transmitting through the concrete.

Additionally, it can be installed in lower temperatures.  So if you’re working in a refrigerated facility, and you pull out your industrial infrared thermometer to gauge the temperature of the slab, then it’s very possible you can find yourself in a questionable flooring situation.  And if that’s the case, then you’ll want to consider urethane cement over the epoxy.

And for these reasons, and many more, urethane cement has easily become one of the most preferred flooring options.  And here’s a run down of the many ways it can be used:

Urethane Cement Primer:

When dealing with epoxy, it’s important to make sure there’s not too much moisture transmitting through the concrete.  If the owner has a vapor barrier, then you’re usually good.  However, if there’s no vapor barrier, then it’s critical to conduct a calcium chloride test.

Or, you can skip the test entirely and just slap down some urethane cement.  Typically, urethane cement is a 3 component product.  The aggregate is portland cement and some sand, which helps give the material body.  But, if you reduce the aggregate, you can get a thin film application that can be applied at about 50mils.  This is obviously thicker than a standard 8mil application or epoxy.  But, it’s heavier, and able to withstand the pressure from moisture penetrating through the slab.

Urethane cement as a Mortar

If the customer needs a resurfaced, heavy duty floor, then a urethane cement mortar mix will be the most promising application.  Firstly, this material can be installed at 3/16″ or 1/4″.  The thicker the floor, the most abrassion it can tolerate.

But not only can it be installed at such a heavy gauge, it can also do the greatest job protecting one of your facility’s most valuable assets: the concrete.  At this heavy of an application, urethane cement can resist thermal shock.  But it’s also anti-microbial, which prevents dangerous microbes, like listeria, from growing on the surface.

And if you’re trying to accomplish a slip-resistant floor, then you can easily broadcast texture into the surface, after you’ve troweled it.  Q28 sand is a double aught sand that will give you excellent slip resistance.

However, you’ll want to make sure you apply a grout coat over the broadcast sand.  Otherwise, that sand can become dislodged from the urethane cement, and actually clog drains.

But overall, whether you’re using it as a primer, or a matrix, urethane cement has proven to be a superior flooring application.  It is excellent for food and beverage, and can help improve the flooring systems in pharmaceutical facilities.