The Dangers Cold Weather Poses to Concrete
Repeated freezing and thawing cycles can trigger cracks and damage deep within the concrete slab. When ice or snow melts, the resulting moisture can seep into the gaps in your driveway or patio. As the water refreezes, it expands and can shift the concrete, triggering cracks and other serious damage.
Snowplows can also trigger damage. While plows are designed to remove snow, they can also remove part of the surface of the slab, leaving the concrete vulnerable to damage and degradation. Snowplows can also spread road salts to melt ice, but they can cause damage to your slab, too.
Concrete Coatings to Protect Against Winter Damage
Epoxy and polyurethane are two of the most common floor coating systems. Often used to waterproof decks, ramps, and garages, these sealants are designed for heavy-duty durability. They can withstand heavy vehicle traffic and maintain their lustrous appearance year after year.
Epoxy is a polymer coating that is used to seal concrete. We use 100% solids epoxy for hard-wearing, long-lasting results. The epoxy bonds to the concrete, self-leveling to fill in hairline cracks and other imperfections. Epoxy can withstand abrasion, impacts, wear and tear from tires, heavy loads, and harsh environments. It has an easy-to-maintain seamless surface that resists moisture, oil stains, chemical damage from leaking fluids and road salts, and pathogens.
Polyurethane is made with polymers and urethane to protect concrete from wear and tear. It resists stains, abrasions, and fire damage and is an excellent choice in areas that experience extreme temperature changes and wet conditions. Polyurethane flooring is also UV stable, which means it won’t yellow or discolor when exposed to sunlight. It’s flexible, allowing it to accommodate shifts and movements, and it’s durable and hard-wearing, much like epoxy, with minimal maintenance requirements.
Choosing the Right Flooring for Your Garage
The concrete surface of your garage, ramp, or deck is exposed to a lot during the winter. Protecting it with a topcoat can prevent damage and ensure many long years of service. Both epoxy and polyurethane work well for this purpose but do have some important differences. Polyurethane tends to cost more upfront compared to epoxy, but it has a longer lifespan, which can make it a more cost-effective choice. Polyurethane also has greater impact and abrasion resistance but is somewhat more sensitive to moisture than epoxy. Both are extremely versatile in terms of aesthetics.
Contact Blackrock Industrial today to learn more about your options for sealing and protecting your parking garages, decks, and more.