Epoxy vs. Polyurea
Epoxy can be found in many garages. The main reason being that it’s very cheap. It is also marketed as an easy do-it-yourself application. Like most things in the consumer trade, you get what you pay for, and epoxy is no different. Epoxy is misleading because when first applied, it looks pretty good. However, if you investigate the details of epoxy, you will find it has some severe impediments.
Epoxy has multiple downsides
some of the significant disadvantages are:
Installation typically takes a few days
You must prep the concrete very thoroughly
There generally is no warranty given when purchasing epoxy
A common frustration among epoxy users is the hot tire pick-up. On a hot Minnesota summer day, your tires get hot from the road and asphalt. When you park those burning tires on your epoxy floor and drive off the next day, your tires can rip away the epoxy film and leave a delaminated tire impression.
Epoxy is also not hermetic to staining, unlike polyurea. Although it can help, epoxy can still be discolored or damaged by chemicals like salt; street de-ices fluid, oil, and gas.
Delamination is a common epoxy failure. If the concrete isn’t prepared correctly, epoxy will delaminate and wear away in a short amount of time. This delamination is familiar with many of the concrete coatings out there. It’s not unique to just epoxy.
The only advantage epoxy has over polyurea is the equipment needed for installation. For example, “This Old House” recommends requiring only:
Paint rollers and extension handles
Plastic watering can
Floor grinder (optional)
Although an incredibly durable polyaspartic, polyurea too has some drawbacks. For example, it sets up very fast, and you have to be quick and know what you are doing. You also need a dual feed pump among other unique tools. It has a natural tendency to adhere to anything it’s sprayed on. However, it does not bond with concrete as well as other
Polyurea has a significant upside, however. Fast cure times, flexibility and abrasion-resistance and nearly unlimited color options are all inherent properties of Polyurea. This makes it a natural choice for the high demands of a garage floor coating.
Requires as little as a one-day application
Fast cure times; walk on in 4-8 hours, drive on in 24 hours
Chemically resistant to harsh chemicals including gas, oil, and salt
Incredibly durable – 20 times stronger than epoxy
98% more flexible than epoxy; will not crack or peel
No VOC’s and little to no odor
The technology behind protecting your concrete
Polyurea is an organic polymer that is the reaction of isocyanate with an amine terminated polyether resin, forming a plastic-like or rubber-like compound that may be used in many of the same ways as older technologies – polyurethane, epoxy, vinyl ester, neoprene; to name a few. Find more details at the Wikipedia definition. In other words, it’s flexible so it won’t crack as epoxy would, and it has a natural ability to bond to the surface it’s sprayed on.
Numerous coating applications
Polyurea has a long history in industrial applications such as pipe/pipeline coatings, water treatment plants, utility hole & sewer linings and of course concrete coatings. In fact, if you are familiar with spray-on pickup truck bed liners, you are familiar with Polyurea. Its popularity these days is in concrete surfaces, but the possibilities for its use are endless!
Superior Garage Floor’s Hybrid Product
Garage floor coating layers use a combination of a penetrating polymer and polyurea. The inventive polymer is best for genuinely bonding to the concrete. Then a coat of color flakes. Over the top of the wafers comes the sealing polyurea. This combination, hybrid coating, is what allows us to offer our lifetime warranty. Learn more about our installation process here.
Of course, all of these details are taken care of if you visit or call the team over at ArmorThane. We recommend this company over any other for any of your polyurea needs. They are a staple in the industry and are here to help anytime you need it.