Chip and flake is not a very encouraging name for a garage floor coating, but in reality chip and flake flooring utilizes a sturdy mixture that can preserve your floor for a long time. There are many options for protecting garage floors, and the choice can be overwhelming. In this article, we dive a little deeper into chip and flake flooring and what you can expect from it.
What Is Chip and Flake Flooring?
Chip and flake flooring is a system of garage floor coating methods that gives a beautiful and textured appearance to any floor while preserving its longevity. The process combines high-quality blended vinyl flakes with epoxy and polyaspartic coatings. The process is layered to give the best results possible.
First, a moisture-resistant primer is laid to protect the original flooring and keep out moisture from below. Next comes a vinyl chip and flake broadcast. This is where most of the coating’s color and textured appearance comes into play. A grout coat locks the broadcast in place, and a chemical resistant topcoat sealings everything in for maximum durability.
A Varied Approach
In every step of the process, a homeowner has complete control over both the appearance and quality of a chip and flake floor. Primers come in a number of compounds, including polyurethane concrete, other polyaspartic coating materials, and epoxy. The location and durability expectations should determine which is used.
While chip and flake flooring is well-known for being smooth, more or less texture can be added in both the grout coat and top coat. The amount of texture is dependent on a client’s preferences and the amount of traction desired. The client also determines the preferred thickness and finish of a topcoat. Glossy, satin, and matte finishes are all available.
The Finest Flakes
The source of chip and flake’s name is where the color can be found. The flakes are created from pigments in addition to filler, resin, and other additives, and a wide variety of colors makes each coating unique. So too does the random nature of the flakes. Each flake is unique in size and shape, and they fall where they lay for an unreplicatable pattern. The textured effect can be mesmerizingly beautiful.
The Pros and Cons of Flake Flooring
All floor coatings have their pros and cons, and chip and flake flooring is no different. Those looking to cover their floors should weigh each pro and con carefully against their needs and preferences.
The installation process for flake flooring is highly involved, including maintaining moderate humidity levels while the epoxy cures. While installation is handled by a professional team, the process can still inconvenience property owners while it is being completed. Initial installation is also relatively expensive.
The textured appearance of flake flooring can also make it difficult to find things like bolts and staples when they fall in the garage. If the confetti-like pattern is going to inconvenience you more than it inspires you, consider your flooring options carefully.
Chip and flake flooring is highly durable. It is highly water-resistant and is not easily affected by heat. The top coat lends a level of UV resistance to protect the rest of the coating as well as the floor underneath. Though the upfront cost is high, because it is such an enduring system, flake flooring is actually more cost effective in the long run.
Another big pull is its appearance. Flake flooring makes a floor look thicker and more luxurious than it actually is. There is a wide variety of choices and virtually unlimited color options. The pattern adds visual interest and a sense of luxury, giving garage floors a beautiful almost marble-like appearance.
Flake flooring is also customized for every space. What’s more, the layered approach allows you to customize to finite levels. Property owners can choose thickness (and therefore, durability), texture, color, and sheen for their floor coating, knowing that the variety of flakes makes their flooring 100% unique.
The coating can also cover both smooth and textured floors. The end result is usually a very smooth surface. This can make them slippery, but anti-slip compounds are available to mix into the topcoat if you are worried about lack of traction. Keep in mind, however, that the smooth texture makes them very easy to clean.
While the lifespan of a chip and flake floor is directly affected by many factors (including quality of installation, location, and the amount of use it sees), they do last for a long time, making them an investment for your garage floor.