Polished and epoxy floors are two popular, affordable, and realistic options for home, business, and property owners alike. Each floor has its own perks and downfalls when it comes to ability, design, and installation. Polished concrete is like the new kid at school whom everyone is curious of, but epoxy flooring is like the kid who has been at a school for many years yet people are just starting to find out about hidden talents. Each is very interesting and each is very popular but for different reasons, not better, just different. As technology has improved, so have polished concrete floors and what they can offer floor owners. Epoxy floors have been constantly used in factory and large facility settings, however, have recently been very popular residential installations. Both floors are one of a kind in their own way and should be treated like you would treat a wood or marble floor, both are beautifully unique. No matter what you’re looking for, an industrial, residential, or commercial installation, one of these floors can help, you simply have to understand the pros and cons of both.
To begin with, polished concrete is a chemically treated floor that requires a grinding and polishing process. The grinding and polishing process is what gives these floors their seamless, high-gloss, clean finish. These floors are hard-wearing, they do not scratch, crack, or chip easily. Many areas that are required to adhere to high hygienic standards have begun utilizing polished concrete because of the floors ability to be cleaned quickly and easily. This “easy to clean” quality is always true, even if color or design is added. Polished concrete floors offer many different types of coloring options for your floors that cannot be found in other flooring solutions. It is not all fun and games and polished concrete does have its downfalls.
Sometimes, your concrete simply does not and will not make the cut, meaning, if it is old, overly cracked, broken, or the substrate is no longer usable, you concrete cannot be polished. This can turn an affordable polishing project into an expensive replacement one instead. If you’re concrete looks good but is simply not at a level where it will properly polish, extra labor and more intensive work will need to be added to ensure a proper long-term installation. Polished concrete, if it is not installed properly, is susceptible to water damage because it must be sealed from the ton and the bottom. If liquid penetrates a concrete floor pores it creates an environment suitable for mold and mildew growth.
Epoxy floors offer many similar benefits as polished concrete floors and many different ones as well. For example, an epoxy floor is versatile, it offers protection, beauty, and longevity no matter where it is installed. It also offers more than just unique color schemes; an epoxy floor can mimic other flooring materials like wood or marble but not require the same type of maintenance. These floors are easy to clean and hard to damage, regardless of the decorative features you choose to install them with.
There are also downfalls to epoxy flooring, just like there are downfalls to polished concrete. Water-based epoxy coatings are the cheapest, but they are also the thinnest and have a significantly shorter lifespan than 100% epoxy, which will last over two decades. Epoxy will sometimes require more than one coat to properly seal to your concrete.
Each system offers its own version of the pros and cons, none of which are better or worse for your floors. There are questions you can have answered with a professional when deciding what floors will best suit your needs.