What is Metallic Epoxy Floor Coating? | Your Ultimate Guide from Kansas City Experts

News / June 1, 2020

Imagine having gorgeous floors that truly sparkle—literally. With metallic epoxy flooring, you get one-of-a-kind, durable floors that incorporate a dazzling metallic effect. No matter the need, whether for your home or a commercial facility, you’re sure to surprise anyone who walks in the door!

For almost 20 years, Big Red Decorative Concrete has laid down the most beautiful metallic epoxy floors throughout the Kansas City area. In all of our years, we haven’t found a concrete flooring option that compares to the uniqueness that metallic concrete floors bring. 

If you’re interested in transforming your plain concrete with metallic epoxy flooring, read on and we’ll break down all you need to know. 

What is metallic epoxy?

A metallic epoxy is basically an epoxy coating with a metallic additive. The metallic additive is a powder that continuously moves through the epoxy coating as it cures (dries). This movement ensures that no two floors end up the exact same, even if they’re the same color. 

Let’s go into a little more detail about epoxy coatings. An epoxy coating is a two-part chemical mix made of an epoxy resin and a hardener. Though it starts out as a liquid, once it cures it becomes a truly durable solid that’s hard to crack. 

One of the biggest benefits of epoxy flooring is how long it can last. If you take care of them properly, you can expect them to stick around for 10 years or even more! So it’s goodbye cracks and stains, and hello pristine floors!

The difference between metallic epoxy coating and paint

Oftentimes people confuse the terms epoxy coating and epoxy paint. That’s mainly because manufacturers use them interchangeably. However, whenever you’re looking for true metallic epoxy for your home or business, you may not want to step inside your nearest hardware store. 

Here’s why:

The metallic epoxy you’ll typically find in store is actually just paint with some resin in it. Though it will be sturdier than the paint on your walls, paint is still paint. It won’t last long, and it definitely won’t dry the same way as a coating. Trust us, the last thing you want is a basement floor filled with paint chips and cracks. 

What if I buy a metallic epoxy home kit instead?

We get it—DIY is fun and could be cheaper than the professional alternative. Plus, with brands marketing easy-to-use epoxy home kits, it may be enticing to simply grab one and test your luck. More often than not, though, they are just a waste of money. We love a great deal, but we don’t love spending our hard earned cash on something that won’t give results. 

Metallic epoxy kits have a low solid content, meaning they have a much shorter lifespan than actual epoxy coating. So while a professional job could last you more than a decade, those home kits will only give you about 1 to 2 years before you’ll have to redo the entire process. 

For this reason, we highly recommend you seek out professional help. That way you can achieve the look you’re after without having to repeat the cycle over and over again. 

How to know if your epoxy coating is legit

Truth be told, not all epoxy coatings are the same. We know, we know—it’s tough to find the right choice. However, once you know the signs of a poor coating, you’ll be one step closer to beautiful metallic floors. 

Contains a chemical thinner

A cheap commercial epoxy coating may have large amounts of nonylphenol (basically a big word for a non-solvent thinner). Some manufacturers use it to keep the price of their coatings down.

Has to “sit” before you can apply

If you notice an epoxy coating requiring an “induction time,” turn the opposite way. A high quality coating won’t have to sit for several minutes after you’ve mixed the resin and hardener. 

Has crystallization

Crystallization doesn’t always mean you’ve found a cheap metallic coating. There are instances where crystallization happens, no matter how expensive the mixture. However, a cheap coating is more likely to have crystallization than one that is more high quality. Things like impure additives, excess moisture, and temperature changes could all cause metallic epoxy coating to form tiny specks. 

Note: Never use crystallized resin unless you’ve reheated it. 

Shows excessive “blushing” after the epoxy cures

The moisture in the air can cause a waxy layer to form on the surface of your metallic epoxy coating. That waxy layer is called blushing. While all epoxy coatings have this to an extent, cheaper epoxy will have a lot of blushing.

Choosing the right metallic epoxy for your needs

Metallic Epoxy Flooring - Kansas City

First thing’s first—you should decide what percentage of solids you want in your coating. Higher percentage coatings are harder to apply, but as long as you hire a professional you should be just fine!

Percentage of solids determine how much epoxy solids will evaporate during the curing process. If a company offers an 100% solid metallic epoxy coating, that means there won’t be any solid evaporation. On the other hand with 50% solid coating, you can expect 50% of the solids to evaporate. 

Basically, the higher the percentage, the higher the durability. The choice is all your own, but if you ever need help deciding what percentage of solids will work best for you, you can always speak to an epoxy expert for help. If you’re in the Kansas City area, feel free to call Big Red Decorative Concrete at 816.734.8930 with any questions or concerns. 

Benefits of choosing the right metallic epoxy flooring

It goes without saying that the right flooring option can do wonders for your home or business. In fact, we’ve seen firsthand how incredible the difference metallic epoxy can make. Throughout our years of experience, here are just a few benefits we’ve found that come with the upgrade.

Easy to maintain

Since all epoxy floors come with a sleek, smooth finish, they’re very easy to clean. You won’t have to worry about hard-to-reach nooks and crannies that could make cleaning up a huge pain. Instead, all you have to do is grab a broom and mop and you’re good to go. 

Stain resistant

Speaking of cleaning, who wants to spend time scrubbing away stains? Not us. It’s a good thing metallic epoxy flooring is stain resistant. You can bring on the family gatherings or open up shop without worrying about stains ruining your floors. 

Affordable

Compared to other flooring options like expensive hardwood or certain tiles, epoxy flooring gives a lot more bang for your buck. Plus, installation costs are typically lower too since the coating applies directly over concrete. 

Protective

Not only do metallic epoxy floors look great, they also protect the underlying concrete from moisture, grease, foot traffic, and more. This could save you a lot of money when it comes to maintenance, especially if you’re applying the epoxy in a high-traffic area. Keep in mind that the protective benefits are only as good as the application. That’s why it’s so important to find professionals who really know what they’re doing. 

Customizable

With metallic epoxy, you make the rules (at least when it comes to the appearance). There are different color combinations and metallic concentrations you can choose from to ensure you have awe-worthy floors. 

Big Red’s pick for the best metallic epoxy coating system: SunMetal Effects Metallic Flooring System

We absolutely love the SunMetal system because it’s ability to become completely customizable. With SunMetal, you can choose between clear, silver, or bright metallic pigments to transform your concrete floors. From there, you decide just how much metallic flair you want. 

For example, if you want a more shimmery look, go for less metallic. For a true pearlescent, metallic sheen, amp up that amount to your heart’s content. You can even create a 3D or marbled effect too! No matter what you choose, the glass-like finish will be smooth and super easy to clean. 

What to expect during the SunMetal overlay process:

Our team at Big Red starts by cleaning your current concrete before priming with a tinted epoxy. This tinted epoxy acts as a base color before we add the metallic coat. After the primer dries, we go back over your floors with the metallic epoxy coating with a squeegee or trowel. While the floor is still wet, we can add or colors or continue moving around the metallic coating for the desired effect. 

Discover the best metallic epoxy coating in Kansas City at Big Red Decorative Concrete

When it comes to metallic epoxy coating, don’t you want to give your floors the best treatment possible? At Big Red Decorative Concrete, we serve businesses in the Kansas City metro area on both sides of the stateline, and our results speak for themselves! Our wide variety of epoxy coatings range in color, chip blends, and finishes. We can even add your logo to the floors to really make them your own!

From start to finish, we pride ourselves on having a seamless customer service experience, so all you have to do is sit back, relax, and enjoy your upgraded concrete floors. 

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