Featuring innovative flooring materials and what should be chosen to place on top of the flooring base
Flooring is an integral part of any décor that provides aesthetics with durability and ease of maintenance. It adds to the charm and beauty of a living, office or commercial space. Explaining the importance of flooring for a built environment, Dr. Kumar Iyer, Head of Commercial Operations at CAS Indian Subcontinent, Covestro India said, “Floorings get impacted by our everyday activities and are usually the first surface to reflect wear and tear. Therefore it is important to invest in floors which will keep pace with daily activities and add value. It has to add aesthetics and a sense of personality to the building space. It has to meet the functionality as demanded by the customer.”
For example, for residential space, design and elegance are the key aspects. On the other hand, for industrial buildings, the wear or abrasion resistance, chemical properties are key aspects of flooring.
According to Avdhesh Jain, General Manager of Action Tesa, “The flooring is an important part of any interior design, which is why whenever an architect or an interior designer is working on the blueprints of any building, whether a resident, a commercial or an industrial building, the flooring is one of the major aspects that he will have to specify.”
One should take an extra amount of time when making the flooring selection and pick the best solution that is durable, cost effective and beautiful.
Avdhesh Jain, General Manager, Action Tesa
Hasan Rizvi, Vice President of STP opines, “Flooring plays a major role in meeting the standards required for high-quality of living especially in public buildings like hospitals or food processing plants, where hygienic floors are of the utmost importance.”
K.R. Shivshankar, Managing Director, Inovar Floors India Pvt Ltd said, “Unlike other surfaces, flooring needs to be not only good looking but durable too. Flooring can change the personality of any interiors. Flooring, besides making a lifestyle statement, does lift the interiors to a new level.”
Dr. Iyer summarises the discussion on importance of flooring by saying, “Flooring provides aesthetics, ease of maintenance, protection to the concrete surface, water proofing and helps in the levelling of the concrete.” He observed that polyurethane floors can be easily modified to extend or limit their pot life, re-coat time as well as the total curing time. This flexibility enables contractors to complete PU floors in a much shorter space of time and to turn over the floors to their customer in a much shorter period.
How to select a flooring solution?
Today there are a number of flooring options available in the market and one need to be very careful when selecting flooring materials. According to Rizvi, there are numerous factors that are responsible for selection of floor and the foremost factor is where the floor required. Dr. Iyer also said that the right flooring solution should be in accordance with the area of application.
For example: A pharma unit may require dust proof flooring, a hospital would require flooring which prevent fungal or bacterial growth, and an electronic industry would require antistatic flooring to prevent shocks. The thickness of epoxy flooring may depend on the load coming on to it.
Flooring provides aesthetics, ease of maintenance, protection to the concrete surface, water proofing and helps in the levelling of the concrete.
Dr. Kumar Iyer,
Head of Commercial Operations at CAS Indian Subcontinent, Covestro India
In residential flooring, ceramic tiles, marbles etc. are used for faster installation, aesthetics, and ease of maintenance. In commercial floorings, carpets, parquet (wooden) floorings, polymeric floorings are used. These are effective solutions if one is looking at aesthetics, ease of maintenance, noise insulation, and comfort.
Industrial floors face particularly high stress day by day. Polyurethane systems have proven to be extremely reliable in this application, Dr. Iyer claimed. He said, “In industrial applications, polymeric floorings like PU and epoxy are generally preferred for seamless, wear and tear, chemical resistance, mechanical properties, as well as ease of maintenance.”
Dr. Iyer further added, “Choice of material for floor covering typically depends on factors such as cost, endurance and durability, noise insulation, comfort and aesthetics, cleaning effort, sealing properties, and anti-skid especially for bathroom.”
However, Shivshankar opined that the flooring should be selected purely on the basis of beauty and functionality – both should have equal importance. “Nonetheless, the cost effectiveness of the flooring is one of the main aspects. One should take an extra amount of time when making the flooring selection and pick the best solution that is durable, cost effective and beautiful,” Jain of Action Tesa echoed Shivshankar ‘s point of view.
Flooring should be selected purely on the basis of beauty and functionality – both should have equal importance.
K.R. Shivshankar, Managing Director, Inovar Floors India
Today, interior floors are mostly theme based. It has to blend with the overall aesthetics. Floor is the single largest area other than walls. For durable floors it is important to follow the proper base requirement and application process. However, Ajay Singam, Director, Rocland Pvt Ltd observes, “Sometimes floor selection supersedes the requirement of function and durability. It is always the last item in any interior scope and not given the time required to install technically correct floor.”
For large commercial spaces like malls it is often seen that most of the floors have incorrect anti-skid properties. “Floor for commercial use will be better served by systems have features like skid resistance, seamless to give the feeling of vastness, and not repetitive in design but subtle variations,” Singam said.
Sometimes floor selection supersedes the requirement of function and durability.
jay Singam, Director, Rocland
Some of the systems can be terrazzo floors, polished concrete, concrete exposed aggregate and polished, cementitious seamless thin topping screeds or self smoothening system, and resin floors with various finishes.
Epoxies as flooring
Epoxies are polymer materials that begin life as liquids and are converted to solid polymers by a chemical reaction. An epoxy-based polymer is mechanically strong, chemically resistant to degradation of the chemical elements in the solid form and highly adhesive during conversion from liquid to solid. There are a wide range of epoxy chemicals, to formulate various epoxy systems.
“Epoxies have multiple uses when used in flooring it adds aesthetic value, it makes the area more appealing, in turn provides cleaner, healthier, more pleasant place for working. It helps to control concrete deterioration and protects the substrate from chemical and physical degradation,” explained Rizvi.
He adds, “Epoxy coating can lengthen the life of the floor and achieve a great appearance. Epoxy flooring can be applied over many different materials, including steel, concrete, and wood. However, concrete is the best surface for laying epoxy floors. Epoxy floor coating performance is directly affected by surface preparation.”
Epoxy coating can lengthen the life of the floor and achieve a great appearance.
Hasan Rizvi, Vice President, STP
The right choice!
Action TESA’s laminated flooring
Now laminated flooring become the hottest choice of individual customer, preference over stone, marble or carpeting has given a lucrative and sustainable platform, said Jain. The flooring industry in India is going through an exciting transformation these days. New and innovative designs and products are the key. Clients and designers are now more prone towards experimenting with new things.
There have been technological advances in the locking profile also. Action TESA’s locking profile is designed with a 5-spindled tool to render a double click locking system on the length and a single locking profile on the smaller width rendering desired locking strength. Latest technology is used to make tong and groove system for longer life of the joints.
Action TESA has an exciting portfolio of flooring products, especially for commercial spaces including Herringbone flooring series.
The king size flooring is an excellent flooring option for large areas like auditoriums, lounges of airports, hotels, and banquets. Unique features of Action TESA flooring include fade resistant, termite resistant, anti-moisture, stain resistant, glue free installation, suitable for under floor heating, and edge protection.
Inovar floor covering solutions
Inovar Floors India offers the complete range of floor covering solutions, laminate flooring, engwood flooring, bamboo, luxury vinyl tiles, WPC outdoor decking and ceiling. The company offers complete supply and installation solutions.
Seamless PU flooring
Covestro offers a range of products for seamless polyurethane (PU) flooring. PU floor coatings have been in commercial use for more than 30 years. Flexible, hard and tough coating materials are formulated with PU raw materials for application in many different market segments. Covestro has a plethora of products for industrial floor coatings, coatings for floors in the food packaging industry, coatings for parking decks, athletic indoor floor coatings, penetration primers and sealings, decorative gravel and terrazzo, and decorative self-levelling floor coatings.
Covestro offer raw materials for solvent borne or waterborne PU floor coating systems for one- or two-component technologies. Depending on the application, properties such as good levelling, high resistance to abrasion and impact, chemical resistance, impermeability to liquids, crack-bridging, slip resistance, electrical conductivity, weather stability and colour fastness, ease of cleaning and care, can be achieved with PU floor coating.
Rocland’s Avcrete SLU (self-levelling underlayment) provides a uniform base with rapid installation and minimum handling of materials as these can be pumped upto 100-150 metres high. “It requires minimum manpower, rapid installation, less margins of error. Most importantly floorings like tiles, stone can be fixed by more durable tile adhesives,” informed Singam.
Rocland Toppings for terrazzo floors offer an option of finishing concrete bedding directly into finished floor.
STP Antistatic flooring system
STP’s ShaliFloor SL AS 3E is a self-levelling anti-static epoxy applied over a properly prepared concrete surface. Its unique property of dissipating the static charge protects sensitive electronic equipment and components. This is ideally suited for specialty areas like R&D labs, operation theatres and solvent handling areas. It provides properties of anti-static, anti-fungal and anti-bacterial. The product is available in all selected colours as per shade card.