When it comes to epoxy flooring for the garage, one of the most common problems is how slippery they get when wet. Manufacturers advocate a diverse range of anti-slip additives, ranging from aluminum oxide to sand to polymer-based grit. It can be difficult to choose the right one.
Garage floor coatings made of resins, such as epoxy, polyuria, and polyurethane, are non-porous, which results in a surface that is exceedingly smooth in appearance.
Despite the fact that this type of surface is fine when it is dry, it turns slippery when wet and can constitute a hazard when exposed to water, oils, or mud, among other things.
Rather than wasting time trying to figure out whether or not your epoxy floor requires a non-skid additive, let’s look at the best techniques to make your epoxy flooring less slippery.
What Is Epoxy?
First and foremost, let’s talk about epoxy and its many varieties of them because there are many different kinds. Epoxy flooring is designed for industrial and outdoor applications.
Generally speaking, it can be found in both private and commercial garages. Epoxy flooring is sometimes referred to as resinous flooring in some circles.
Epoxy flooring is composed of two components: a hardener and a resin, both of which are composed of polymers.
A chemical link is formed between the two elements, resulting in a hard polymer that is remarkably similar to plastic in appearance.
You have the option of either replacing the existing flooring with epoxy or coating the existing flooring with epoxy.
The epoxy must have a minimum of two millimeters of thickness in order to be effective. You can choose from a variety of different types of epoxy. Let’s discuss them in further detail now.
Are Epoxy Floors Slippery When Wet?
Epoxy is quite a versatile product that may be used in a variety of sectors due to its strong adhesive characteristics.
Epoxy resin is used in a variety of applications, including decorative flooring, as an example. It can be used to layer epoxy flooring, chip flooring, terrazzo flooring, and a variety of other aggregate flooring alternatives.
When the epoxy resin is wet, it becomes extremely slippery, which is one of its drawbacks. Your surface may become moist if you do not properly mix the epoxy resin into the mixture.
Adding anti-slip qualities to your epoxy resin is recommended if your resin does not already have them.
Types Of Epoxy Flooring
Unreal Epoxy Floors
Epoxy floors are typically associated with single-color, gleaming flooring, which is what most people imagine when they think of them. Fortunately, that is by no means your only option.
Take, for example, flaky epoxy floors. These feature flake-like elements dispersed throughout the epoxy, which add dimension and color to the finished product.
The flakes aren’t just for show; they also have a functional purpose. The anti-slip grooves they create make flaky epoxy flooring a popular choice for commercial clinics, sports arenas, showrooms, kitchens, and locker rooms, among other places.
Electro-static charge resistant (ESD) epoxy floors are another name for anti-static epoxy floors. Electric discharge can be a hazard in the workplace, which is why anti-static epoxy flooring was introduced to combat this problem.
The conductive component in the flooring slows the pace at which electricity is discharged from the floor. Both residential and commercial users will benefit from this.
Anti-static epoxy flooring is most commonly found in chemical plants, pharmaceutical clinics, hospitals, and other healthcare facilities.
Epoxy quartz floors, as the name suggests, blend quartz with a long-lasting polymer resin to create a durable surface. Because of its anti-slip properties, this kind of epoxy flooring is also capable of withstanding high levels of foot activity.
Epoxy quartz flooring is commonly found in schools, showrooms, cafeterias, locker rooms, offices, bathrooms, and lobbies, among other places.
Epoxy mortar floors are one of the most effective anti-slip epoxy flooring kinds available. They are created by mixing quartz or graded sand with pure epoxy.
As a result, the floor is resistant to wear and can withstand impacts as well as chemical exposure. Epoxy mortar floors are used in a variety of applications, ranging from residential and commercial garages to restaurants, warehouses, mechanical areas, and manufacturing plants.
The following is a fascinating fact regarding this form of epoxy flooring: if your existing floor has cracks you can use epoxy mortar to repair them.
Self-leveling epoxy flooring is a variation on this theme. Concrete floors which are broken, cracked, or simply old can be leveled with these.
After that, the floors become more equal across the board, making it a safer environment. With a variety of epoxy designs and styles to choose from, self-leveled flooring may be easily integrated with your existing flooring.
Reasons For Epoxy Floors Being Slippery
Non-porous materials such as epoxy, polyurethane, and polyurea exist in their natural state, which that means when you apply them, there are no pores or other features that can offer traction.
To put it another way, there is no space for the flow of water. One of the reasons for its widespread use is the fact that epoxy is a superior chemical layer to be used on floors, as demonstrated by its outstanding chemical resistance.
In contrast, when applied on a perfectly flat surface that is devoid of flakes or other irregularities, it can make flooring highly slippery, especially when it is humid.
The epoxy surface is safe to walk on when it is dry; nevertheless, if any liquid spills on the epoxy surface (beverage, oil, chemical, or other), it can result in an accident.
It is necessary to determine whether you require a slip-resistant floor additive in the first place, and then we will explore the many options that you can go for to make the floor slip-resistant in subsequent steps.
Ways To Make Epoxy Floor Less Slippery
Installing carpet runners beneath epoxy flooring is one of the most effective ways to improve its appearance. These carpets are available in a variety of widths, colors, lengths, and shapes to accommodate a wide range of requirements and tastes.
Carpet runners have a number of other advantages, including the fact that they are easily cleaned and resistant to stains.
The addition of silica sand to the epoxy flooring can also help to reduce the slickness of the surface. When applied to flat surfaces, the sand can make a lumpy, skid-resistance coating.
In this case, the silica sand will shatter when subjected to severe weights, which is one key disadvantage of using this choice.
Aluminum Oxide Additive
When used in conjunction with epoxy flooring, an additive made of aluminum oxide creates a surface that is highly hard, durable, and tough, making it anti-slip.
The additive forms a strong bond with the surface of epoxy and does not alter the physical qualities of the surface. It is difficult to clean this option since the finish attracts dirt and stains, which is one of the disadvantages of this option.
The anti-slip coating creates a rough surface on the floor, making them more slip-resistant. According to the type and amount of traffic that your floor receives, these coatings have a life expectancy of up to 5 years or more.
Shark grip is a well-known polymer that is used with sealers designed for concrete to form a slip-resistant surface on the concrete surface.
This addition helps to provide a slip-resistant surface for epoxy floor coatings, as well as increase the texturing and reduce the shine of the floor.
Aside from mixing quickly, this shark grp is also easy to clean and is more comfortable to walk on than sand textured surfaces, which are more difficult to walk on.
Contained mats are impermeable membrane flooring products that have edging around the perimeter of them.
These mats can protect your epoxy floors, especially your epoxy garage floor, from mud, automotive fluids, water, oil, and anything else that you might accidentally spill on your floor while working on your car.
Due to the fact that they are made to absorb liquids and fluids, they make epoxy flooring less slippery as a result.
Process Of Applying Slip-Resistant Additives
It is generally believed that the best method of incorporating a non-slip ingredient like aluminum oxide or polymer grit into a garage floor coating that you install yourself is to mix it into the final topcoat before rolling it out onto the floor.
When working with epoxy or other coatings, the ideal ratio is 4 ounces per gallon. The use of excessive amounts will result in the material clumping together, which is not a desirable effect for the finished surface of the floor.
When applying it to 100 percent solids epoxy or polyurea, it’s better to give it a blend with the final coat and pour the mixture across the floor in ribbons to avoid smearing the finish.
Rolling and re-rolling the coating can then be done as before. This will have the effect of dispersing the non-slip grit evenly throughout the floor surface.
If you are applying a thinner or polyurethane, you should roll the product in the paint tray to give it a stir. It’s preferable if you mix additive with coating before pouring it into your baking pan or tray.
Remember that while these additives do a good job of remaining in the mix for a short period of time, they will eventually sink to the bottom and must be thoroughly mixed before being poured into the tray each time.
Non-slip additives can also be applied to the surface of a layer or base layer before the final topcoat is applied. Alternatively, they can be simply tossed onto the final topcoat after it has been applied.
It is possible to obtain a bad distribution of the slip-resistant aggregate in this manner, or, when put to the top of the final layer, it might tear away with wear and produce pockets on the surface that accumulate dirt and debris.
The mixture of polymer grit and the final top layer is our favored product for achieving a slip-resistant surface. While walking barefoot or working under a car, it provides the softest feel possible, which will not scrape your back or cause you to stumble.
Furthermore, it has minimal visibility of the slip-resistant additives, which is particularly important when applied to a floor with color chips.
All of the options listed above are simple and long-lasting solutions for making the epoxy flooring slip-resistant. The state of your floor, as well as your financial situation, will decide which option you choose to choose.
It is, however, recommended that if the floor becomes repeatedly slippery, you seek a long-term solution rather than a temporary one.
We hope that you find this guide useful. A slipper epoxy floor is something that none desires. Therefore, choose the product carefully, maintain it and do all the needful to keep it slip-resistant.
Jenny SteffensHobick is the full-time editor responsible for painting, flooring, bathrooms & home climate coverage at House Whirl. She is a home improvement expert with an eye for design and the skills to get the work done. She knows what turns a house into a home and has the advice and ideas to make upgrades easy and fun.