Epoxy Application - flake flooring options

What could contractors possibly learn about flake floors? Aren't they all the same?

Some would say that flake flooring is fantastic; some would say it looks a little dated. In my opinion it’s a great type of seamless, resin floor for certain applications and garage flooring is definitely one (hence the title of this post).

So, what do I know about epoxy flake flooring that others might not?

All flakes aren’t the same 

To start with, paint flakes can be made of different material and different processes using the same material (if that makes any sense!). For instance, I know I can buy flakes made of acrylic or PVA (vinyl), and there are different manufacturers of these flakes, hence there will be a great variety in the finished product available.

Overall, I have found acrylic flake quite brittle, which means I end up with a lot of “fines” in the bottom of each container. You have to be careful with how you broadcast these on flake floors as they tend to show inconsistencies really easily, especially when clumped. If you’re doing a partial flake job then I probably wouldn’t use any fines at all as they stand out even more and the client may look at it as a defect.

A close-up photo of a flake floor showing how flake fines can appear as a colour defect.

Vinyl flakes are my preference

My preference is for the more flexible vinyl flake. The flexibility is beneficial not only with respect to fines, but it can also have another significant benefit with flake flooring. As it lands, a rigid flake will tend to create a lot of extra space in between and under the flakes themselves. These voids draw in resins, meaning you need more to adequately seal the surface; quite often another coat will be required to produce an even finish, which means more product and more cost.

Another advantage I like with vinyl flakes is I can get them to lie flat by spraying a mist of water over the surface. There are of course tricks and tips on how to do this, but the result is flat, even, smooth flake floors that often don’t require sanding before being coated. Another cost and time saver!

Simple flake flooring = best flake flooring

There are obviously countless ways to do epoxy flake flooring and there are advantages and disadvantages with each method. For indoor applications, I like a simple two-coat process: a basecoat with full broadcast of flake and a topcoat. If you choose the right combination of flake and resin you can achieve a superb finish every time!

Question: I’ve always thought that “grey marble” (combination of grey/s, black and white) was the most popular combination for flake floors. A couple of years ago it seemed “coffee” combinations were the new trend  (combination of browns and off-white). What’s your favourite combination?

Take care and keep smiling,