I have a dream: fast turnaround flooring
“It’s just a dream,” they’d say with a twinkle in their eye, looking across their worn-out flooring; wishing that one day it could be replaced with minimal hassle and minimal downtime….
Food and beverage
For the food and beverage processing industry, long downtimes not only cost sales losses over the closure period, but can also result in spoilage of raw materials and damage to reputation.
For busy restaurants, closing-up shop for a number of weeks is often just not an option, no matter the time of year or size of the business.
In the healthcare and medical industries, there are areas such as operating theatres and wards where there is simply no time for lengthy shut-downs. Operation waiting lists must continue to be cleared, so fast-curing flooring solutions are the only option.
With strict hygiene standards, epoxy resins provide the best result as they are either spray or trowel applied to form a gap-free, seamless finish. This seamless finish removes places where bacteria can build up, helping to keep the medical facility safe and hygienic.
Manufacturing and warehousing
In fast-paced production environments such as large manufacturing facilities and warehouses, fast-curing flooring can repair, protect and extend the life of concrete surfaces. With traffic literally ‘heavy’ in both amount and weight of machinery passing through, these areas need fast-curing flooring solutions that are able to withstand a constant battering of heavy duty equipment. If the right epoxy coating is chosen, warehouses can be up and running with minimal downtimes and the ground protected from harsh wear and tear.
Case study: Major supermarkets
Hychem have completed over 500 overnight rectifications for major Australian supermarket chains across Australia. The main areas treated are the deli, bakery, seafood and meat preparation areas which require a seamless, chemically-resistant and fast-curing floor topping.
According to Chris Bauer, Head of Flooring at Hychem, supermarkets are in most need of a fast curing flooring solution.
“These large companies can lose thousands of dollars in revenue if the store was required to close for a couple of days.
‘Fast curing floor products allow these supermarkets to finish trading in the evening and have the store reopen the next morning. We are looking at around six to seven hours on-site from start to finish.
“Installing coving at the floor-to-wall junctions is always another step to the process. As the coating must come 100mm up the wall in wet-areas, often this can add extra time onto a job. However, by choosing the right fast curing product, this can be completed within one and a half hours.”
“In some cases we are replacing tiled surfaces, which are not only difficult to clean but also allow bacteria to collect in tile joins.
“As our epoxy flooring is 100 percent seamless, the issue of bacteria in joints is wholly avoided,” said Mr Bauer.
“Another challenge, particularly when a fast-turnaround is required, is creating the falls to the drains. Many self-levelling products are very low-viscosity causing the products to flow into the drain, however Hychem has a specialised range of fillers designed to be used where there is an excessive gradient on the floor.”
Case study: Gate Gourmet
Gate Gourmet is a large food and beverage production company that supplies all the major airlines around the world with meals and drinks. Their offices are located right next to airports to ensure quick transition from the kitchen to the plane.
According to Mr Bauer, time-efficiency is key within this business, so a fast-curing flooring solution for their hot cooking area and dishwashing bay was the only option.
“Once again, time was of the essence and seamless flooring was required for hygiene purposes, as well as a high-temperature resistance and slip-resistance.
“The kitchen closed from 11pm to 7am and in that time the floor had to be prepared, cleaned and installed,” said Mr Bauer.
Case study: Teys Australia and JBS Swift
Generally Teys and JBS Swift operate 24 hours-per-day which means shutting down for maintenance works is a costly procedure.
“When Hychem came in to install the flooring, shutdown took place at 3pm on a Saturday afternoon and installation was completed by 4am on Sunday morning. This included installation of coving and involved a trowelled floor application with a slip-resistant finish,” said Mr Bauer.
“Often the slip-resistant texture will be worn away due to the constant traffic and wear and tear.
For this application in a meat processing facility, we needed an extremely tough and hard-wearing aggregate to provide the slip-resistant finish, which we know will remain intact in this tough environment.”