The first thing to note is that, when it comes to this type of decision, there is no right or wrong answer. You can choose either as long as you understand what they do and whether that solves the problem you are facing.
Epoxy and polyurethane are both types of floor coating. They are both especially good choices when used on concrete floors, especially as they are durable and will last for years.
Deciding between the two starts with understanding what they bring to your floor.
Epoxy Floor Coating
The best epoxy floor coatings consist of a resin mixed with a hardener on site. The mixture is then applied to a clean, dry, and dust-free concrete floor and left to set. While there are some products available that you can administer yourself, the best option is to have it professionally laid. This will help to ensure your investment looks good for years to come.
Professionally laid epoxy flooring is generally thicker and you’re likely to get a smoother finish.
It’s important to note that while all epoxy floorings consist of a hardener and a resin, there are still different types. For example, it’s possible to get a chemical resistant epoxy floor or even a flexible one. The exact one you choose will depend on what the floor is used for.
The typical epoxy floor is applied to existing concrete, will be between 8-15mils thick, ensuring it hides all minor blemishes on your floor and gives a smooth finish. It does need time to harden before you can use it.
You should also note that epoxies are vulnerable to UV light. In other words, your floor will fade over time. This is only an issue if the floor gets a lot of sunlight.
Polyurethane coatings are also chemical based. This type of flooring is generally just made of polyurethane, it’s not necessary to mix ingredients on site.
It is resistant to chemicals. In fact, it can resist more chemicals than the average epoxy flooring. In fact, polyurethane coating is also very tough and is capable of withstanding items being dropped on it. The finish is either smooth and shiny or duller, depending on what you choose and safety features, such as non-slip can be included while it is laid.
However, polyurethane floorings are generally significantly thinner than epoxy, potentially making them weaker.
The Bottom Line
The good news, if you want the best possible floor coating, is that you don’t need to choose between epoxy and polyurethane. These two materials actually complement each other perfectly. If you want a floor that will enhance your building, be extremely durable, and is available in a wide array of colours, you should choose epoxy floor coating with a polyurethane topcoat.
This will ensure you have the best stain and chemical resistance possible, while still being able to choose your colour and enjoy the ability to drop things on your floor without damaging it.