While a polyaspartic or polyurea floor coating has many advantages, it is important to consider other factors before deciding whether it is indeed the best system for you.
First: the cost. A professional installation costs an average of $1 to $3 more than an epoxy/polyurethane equivalent per square foot. Neither is it the simplest installation since it requires a minimum of two people. Depending on the polyaspartic formulation, the average pot life is only 20-30 minutes. This can be very intimidating if this is your first installation of a floor covering. Finally, the materials alone cost about two to three times more than epoxy.
The Installation Method of a Polyaspartic Coating We must keep in mind is that, like epoxies, not all polyaspartics are the same. Some sets of installation on the market are not the same quality as other, more professional, versions. It is important to shop around and compare if you want to install the garage floor coating yourself.
The formulations vary, primarily in terms of the solids content, in order to extend the period of use, or the pot life. Grinding is also recommended for floor preparation.
Polyurea/polyaspartic coatings are unaffected by water or moisture when fully dried. However, moisture during its application can cause more rapid hardening and so must be monitored before installation.
If you are a mechanic, it is also important to consider that polyaspartics are not as resistant as epoxy and polyurethane to battery acids. They can also be very slippery when wet. If you do not add texture to the coating, it is advisable to add an anti-slip aggregate to the topcoat to increase the slip resistance of the coating. Otherwise, you can use a system with vinyl flakes.
One of the main reasons that professional installers offer polyaspartic flooring is the speed of installation, allowing you the use of your garage the following day. A good installer can prepare the concrete and install your liner in as little as six to eight hours. You could walk on and redesign your garage at the end of the day and park your car there the following day. This is an advantage for those who can’t go five days without their garage.
If it fits your budget, if you cannot do without your garage, or if the temperature is not ideal, a polyurea/polyaspartic coating may be exactly what you need. If you like the idea of the speed of application, but do not want to pay somebody to do it for you, make sure you are confident in your ability to implement such a fast-curing system before making your decision.