Types of Protective Barrier Coatings for Concrete Surfaces

Concrete surfaces for a long time were basic. Property owners nowadays still assume that concrete will not suffice for their indoor and outdoor floors since they are looking for a surface that serves a functional and aesthetic purpose. To this end, concrete nowadays has various decorative options that boost their aesthetic appeal without affecting the durability and performance of your surfaces.

Dyed, stamped, cement overlays, polished and engraved concrete are some of the alternatives used by decorative concrete contractors. Though they will need a marginally higher budget compared to basic concrete, these decorative options are worth it. This is because they will considerably boost your property’s appearance and consequently value. It is essential to get a protective coating to guarantee the longevity of your decorated concrete surface.

Inhibitive, barrier and galvanic coatings are some of the available protective coatings for concrete. Barrier coatings create a physical shield that isolates the underlying concrete from elements in its immediate environment. Here are some of the protective coatings used for concrete surfaces.

Polyamide Epoxies

These are a flexible choice and come in various patterns and colors. They also have colored quartz, vinyl chips or sand incorporated in them to achieve a range of designs for your decorated concrete. Epoxy coatings have a high gloss finish and are abrasion-resistant, durable and hard. They, however, require long curing times, may turn yellow when exposed to sun rays, and lose their adhesion with exposure to moisture. There however exist some breathable epoxy variants that are not damaged by UV light and can be safely applied in areas exposed to the sun.


These are flexible and come in low and high molecular mass products. High molecular mass acrylic coatings are favored for their durability while low molecular mass ones are crack-resistant. Hard acrylic coatings will, for instance, have optimal resistance to the infusion of carbon dioxide while soft coatings are resistant to the impact of thermal cycling. The amount of acrylic coating used for protecting concrete surfaces is tightly regulated since too much might mask cracks in your surface and affect the integrity of your building.


Coal Tar Epoxies

These are often polyamide or amine epoxies that are modified using coal tar pitch resin. The resin produces a high build film renowned for its exceptional water and chemical resistance. Coal tar epoxies generally brittle with time and might delaminate beneath concrete repairs or coats. They cure through a chemical reaction process and are used indoors since they can fade or chalk in direct sunlight.

Polyurethane Coatings

These are a category of urethane coatings comprising a polyol and a polyisocyanate. The polyols in these coatings include polyether, polycarbonate, polyacrylate, and polyester. The polyisocyanates are color-stable components that make the coatings chemical resistant. Polyurethane coatings are ideal for high traffic areas since they are resistant to stains, scuffs and heel marks.

The above protective coatings make a significant difference in the look and longevity of your concrete surfaces. They will nonetheless, only work for your property when professionally applied and re-applied. Moreover, various maintenance works must be done repeatedly on your concrete coating to guarantee their efficacy.

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