Navigation Menu+
Commercial Flooring News

Up & Under

Subfloors & screeds are a vital factor in any flooring project:
B A S F recommends its polymer-modified fast-track leveller PCI Periplan CF25 for subfloors and screeds. This rapid- curing, pumpable, self- smoothing, floor levelling system is said to offer high early-strength development and be suitable for dry indoor areas. The product is designed for levelling and surface repairs of rough, uneven concrete floors, screeds and ceramic coverings before laying top coverings such as ceramic or natural stone tiles, PVC or textile or wood strip flooring. It can be applied at thicknesses of 2– 25mm and is reportedly compatible with underfloor heating systems.

Where additional reinforcement is required to increase the product strength, for instance on substrates prone to cracking, sensitive to vibrations or have existing cracks or dummy joints, PCI Armourmat glass-fibre reinforcement systems can be incorporated to improve tensile strength. Armourmat, available in two grades, can be used with levellers applied at 5mm or thicker.

Bostik claimsthatits Laybond Screedmaster 2 Ultimate’s continues to grow in popularity. Developed with various features and enhancements, it is engineered to make smoothing uneven floors, prior to laying decorative floorcoverings, as easy as possible.

Screedmaster 2 Ultimate is described as having an extremely low-odour formulation for applications where unpleasant smells and odours would normally restrict use. It has been formulated to be totally protein and casein- free, allowing its use in biologically sensitive areas that demand its special synthetic latex properties, such as hospitals.

The products’s moisture tolerance reportedly enables it to be used under a DPM. It is also said to be suitable for most substrates including concrete, sand / cement screeds, stone, anhydrite (calcium sulphate), rigid metal, terrazzo and quarry tiles, asphalt as well as old adhesive residue, depending on preparation, and old bituminous residues.

It will also accept foot traffic in as little as 1.5 hours allowing a loose floorcovering to be laid after just eight hours, according to Bostik.

F Ball and Co has updated its Stopgap Isolator Membrane, an impervious loose lay sheet designed for use with damp or contaminated subfloors. The product is now made up of three layers, and is said to be easier to install thanks to increased flexible properties.

Stopgap Isolator Membrane now comprises a new, white top layer that incorporates fibreglass for dimensional stability. This covers a blue, impervious middle layer, made of PVC to prevent moisture rising to the floorcovering. A third, bottom layer, of the membrane is made up of nodules, encouraging any moisture in the subfloor to move and escape at the edges of the installation.

This updated design is said to have increased flexibility, which helps contractors to install the product more easily, particularly in cooler temperatures. The membrane’s new white appearance is designed to make it easier to mark out. It can be laid over damp or contaminated subfloors prior to the installation of a wide range of sheet vinyl, linoleum, rubber flooring and bitumen backed carpet tiles, which must be installed using specialist adhesives, says F Ball.

Styccobond F47 pressure sensitive adhesive is formulated to adhere vinyl sheet floorcoverings to Stopgap Isolator Membrane. To aid coverage uniformity over the white surface it has now been pigmented pale blue.
Stopgap Isolator Membrane is also said to be suitable for fast-track projects where time for traditional subfloor preparation is not available, or for temporary coverings where floors need to be returned to their original state. It is reportedly also suitable in heritage projects, where the removal of the existing floor is not possible or a subfloor needs to be preserved.

Flowcrete hasreleaseda new video on its flooring package the Green Floorzone as a sustainable solution.
The video features a large-scale model of the Green Floorzone, showing the substrate through to final floor finish, with options of underfloor heating (UFH) and sound-proofing built-in.

Suitable for new build and refurbishment projects, this single- source, single-warranty floor build-up programme features a number of sustainable flooring options including choices in resin floor finish and self-levelling screed, as well Isowarm UFH and noise reducing acoustic layer.

All seamless resin floor finishes are supported by the newly enhanced Isocrete floor screeds range with a new formulation free from Ordinary Portland Cement (OPC), and manufactured from a high percentage of recycled raw materials.

Another optional feature, which represents the first stage of the floorzone build-up is Isocrete Acoustic Foam, designed to reduce sound transfer between floors – of benefit for multi-level occupancy buildings.
The services of Flowcrete’s internal project management division can also be implemented. The Green Floorzone reportedly enables specifiers to seamlessly meet the most stringent green construction ratings, such as BREEAM. solution/green-floorzone

Kerakoll UK offersa comprehensive range of floor preparation products which have been specified on a number of projects for various reasons, but primarily their ecological credentials.

The floors of the Earth Sciences Building at Oxford University were levelled with Keratech Eco R10 a self-levelling compound for use in thicknesses between 1-10mm. The product is said to quickly develop a smooth finish and high levels of mechanical resistance making the subsequent laying of all sorts of coverings easy.
The same product was used for the lobby floors in the Dorset Fire & Rescue Centre, Weymouth, as well as at FlyBe training centre, Exeter airport. It was chosen for the FlyBe centre because of its quick drying properties as the tiling needed to be completed rapidly to let the other trades finish within the project deadline, and ecological criteria specified by project managers.

In the same family, Keratech Eco Flex was chosen for a private barn conversion in the Cotswolds where there was a heated anhydrite screed with a decoupling mat on top.

The product was used to level the floor after the mat had been laid and fixed with Kerakoll’s H40 Eco Ideal. It is fibre reinforced and sets rapidily which helped with the tight project deadlines. Keralevel Eco LR, used in the
main appliance bay of Dorset Fire & Rescue Centre, can be used for thicknesses from 1-25mm and has prolonged workability allowing falls to be built up over a large area in one application. Its sister product Keralevel Eco, high grab with extended workability, was used to level the walls in the bay.

Lafarge Gyvlonwasusedin Care Home, Clara, Tullamore, involving Egin construction. This project, according to Lafarge, illustrated why working with the client and contractor at the design stage can ensure a smooth floor

and programme.

The original specification on this project called for 100mm insulation and 75mm sand cement. However the specification of Gyvlon based screed reportedly offered faster application and walk on time; a reduced need for joints or smoothing compounds; and high thermal conductivity and reduced energy requirement from heat pumps resulting in lower costs to the tenant.

Lafarge advised the use of 125mm insulation and 50mm Gyvlon. As a result the screed was moved back in the programme to ensure the roof and most of the glazing was in place.

Before the screed application polythene membrane was placed along with the edge strips. It also advised the use of a dual membrane, DPM, insulation, sacrificial membrane, screed.

The pipes were subsequently placed by the M&E contractor before the screeder returned to place joints at doorways and large aspect ratios, and screed installation. Approximately 1000- 1200sq m were prepared and
poured per week. Again following Lafarge’s advice Egin’s provided excellent ventilation to site by opening doors and glazing during the working days. The UFH was commissioned using the sites back up boilers.

The main contractor did not want to turn the UFH off to conduct a hygrometer reading, so it was decided to choose the CM test and oven dry samples for confirmation. Moisture testing started 14 days after heat was applied and dry results were found between 21 and 28 days later depending on differences in the screed depth.
Prior applying finishes the screed was sanded using a rotary sander to remove site traffic, residual skin and
provide a mechanical key.

Mapei offers specialist screeds, including the fast drying, rapid curing Topcem, said to be suitable where a short installation time is required or for replacing floor screeds where rapid restoration is required. It can be installed both internally and externally on most substrates, says Mapei.

Topcem is reportedly suited for use in conjunction with underfloor heating, and with its rapid drying
characteristics is a cost effective alternative to surface damp proof membranes to control residual and constructional moisture.

After the application of Topcem, the floor can receive light traffic after 12 hours, and installation of ceramic tiles after only 24 hours, stone materials after two days, and resilient and wood floorcoverings after four days.

Resdev joinedforceswith resin flooring specialist Quattro Contracting to provide an industrial flooring solution for GA Pet Food Partners’ 10 year sustainable development plan.

Using over 25 years of experience, quality and assurance, Quattro Contracting specified, managed and installed a bespoke ‘belt and braces’ system developed for use in food manufacture where resistance to heavy wear and spillage is imperative.

Resdev’s Pumadur HF heavy duty polyurethane flooring was applied throughout the main plant area and onto mezzanine levels housing machinery.

The areas are subjected to regular hosing to maintain hygiene standards and ensure safety so, to provide additional abrasion and slip resistance, a full calcined bauxite aggregate scatter was incorporated into the

wet screed.

The system was then finished with Pumadur TF, polyurethane coating. To complement the floor and give the customer a fully comprehensive ‘tanked’ system, the walls were covered to a level of 3m with a fibreglass enforced coating system utilising Pumadur DD UV resistant polyurethane coating. The pristine gloss finish is said to offer a high degree of resistance to spillage and traffic use.

Ronacrete hasadded RonaScreed Self Smoothing Exterior Screed to its growing portfolio. This flow applied industrial flooring system has been used in projects at Glaxo Smith Kline, Gaymers and Kwik-Fit.

The new product is said to provide a hard, durable floor surface for new floors or for renovating existing surfaces. It reportedly gains strength quickly and can be accessed by foot traffic in 4-5 hours and by light to medium traffic after 24 hours at 20degC.

When applied correctly, it is said to produce a smooth, durable wearing surface. The application thickness can vary, ranging from 2mm-40mm. For optimum performance and appearance RonaScreed Self Smoothing Exterior Screed should be applied by specialist industrial floorlayers with expert knowledge of preparation, mixing and application.

Sika suppliedSikafloorfora new £7.8m hangar at Biggin Hill Airport for Qatar-based Rizon Jet. Appointed to deliver the complete flooring application, Zircon Flooring specified solutions from Sika.

The new two-level FBO (fixed base operator) and VIP terminal includes a 4,300sq m hangar with workshops, battery rooms and kitchens.

Zircon Flooring, a resin flooring specialist, was required to install approximately 5,000sq m of hard wearing and slip resistant flooring surfaces.

Before the application, Zircon cleaned and prepared all of the new floors with shot blasting and surface grinding to create a flat, smooth surface.

For the 3,000sq m main hangar floor, the contractor specified Sikafloor 81 Epocem, a 3- component epoxy modified cementitious self smoothing floor topping and temporary moisture barrier. Used as a 2mm
thick damp proof membrane, this was then topped with a 3mm layer of Sikafloor 263 to create the 5mm

resin finish.

Walkways were marked out using Sikafloor 264 and a matt finish Sikafloor 304, applying a darker grey surface with green outline to signify the safe walkway areas.

In the areas of the hangar where maintenance work would be carried out the flooring was required to have an anti-static textured finish. Here Sikafloor 264 ASN Thixo was applied. This two-part, textured, high-build coloured
epoxy resin is said to provide a liquid proof, gloss finish and also good levels of chemical and

mechanical resistance.

All floor joints were sealed using Sikaflex Pro3 WF and column bases grouted with Sika Armorex Armorcrete.

TacFastsaysitsmechanical fix system also acts as an damp- proof membrane. The product featuring an interlocking disc and plate system that sits above the subfloor and a hook and loop fastening system that affixes the floorcovering to the TacFast surface, removing the need for adhesives or complex subfloor preparation.

TacFast is claimed to prevent any damp from seeping into the floorcovering and eliminating any future problems (A polyethylene sheet is recommended as a further moisture barrier under the TacFast system when installing wood floors).

The polypropylene construction of TacFast LocPlate plates will not react with damp concrete subfloors or water, and the individual plates act as a moisture and vapour barrier, according to the company.

It claims that any surface dampness migrating through the concrete will condense under the polypropylene layer, preventing any further damp from oozing through. Furthermore, it believes that mould or mildew is unlikely to generate under the TacFast system, as there will be limited or no airflow.

The product is reportedly suitable for use with different types of floor, including wood, laminate, ceramics, natural stone, LVT and carpet tiles.

Uzin haslaunchedL3Gold Moisture Control System for areas of high moisture up to 90% RH. The product is said to enable fitters to prime the floor with one coat of L3 Gold System Primer and then mix the bag and bottle components L3 Gold Powder and the new L3 Gold Moisture Control liquid, before installing the

levelling compound.

L3 Gold System Primer is claimed to dry within one hour, with L3 Gold Moisture Control levelling compound being ready to accept most floorcoverings in two hours, meaning the whole installation process takes less than four hours. This rapid system is said to be not only extremely affordable when compared to the traditional system at price per sq m but also saves time and money on labour costs.

Due to regulations regarding duty of care and allergies to latex, the system is also suitable for sensitive environments such as hospitals because the L3 Gold products are ammonia and latex free.

L3 Gold Moisture Control system can also applied over old waterproof adhesives residues. It has a high compressive strength of 25 N.

Saint-Gobain Weber
reports that its UK factories in Telford, Flitwick and Ballyclare are now producing and distributing 75% of its contract flooring products.

The aim is to satisfy increased customer demand while reducing transportation mileage, and contributing to the control of the company’s environmental impact.

Both weber.floor 4150 fine flow and 4310 fibre flow levelling compounds are designed to renovate existing floors in domestic and commercial applications and are suitable for hand or pump application.

These products are made from special cements, aggregates, supplementary binders and chemical admixtures. They are supplied pre-blended and are stated to be ready for foot traffic just 2-4 hours after application.
weber.floor 4150 fine flow is a levelling compound for use on concrete floors. weber.floor 4310 fibre flow is a fibre modified levelling compound for bonded, un-bonded and floating floors.

Both products should be covered with a final floor finish such as ceramic, terrazzo, PVC or linoleum. Among the range produced in the UK are weber.floor 4320 fibre flow rapid, a self-levelling, fast setting and rapid drying floor screed; weber.floor 4360 base flow rapid, a pumpable self-drying, levelling screed and weber.floor 4160 fine flow rapid, a pumpable, self-levelling screed compound.

WH Surface Preparation offers for hire a range of forced action mixers such as the Imer 120 110V portable mixer, said to avoid the hassle of towing a mixer to the jobsite.

The Imer 120, designed to be transported by one person, can make a wheelbarrow of mortar/screed every five minutes, according to the company. It reportedly fits on elevators and passes through standard 36in doors.
The vertical shaft mixing action does not splash around the jobsite, and with ‘the twist of the wrist’, it delivers as little as a handful, a bucket, or a wheelbarrow full of material and is quiet enough to operate anywhere. The 4.5cu ft drum capacity is designed to give 2.2cu ft batch output from a 27in drum fitted with a safety cut out switch if the lid is lifted while mixing.

This article has been reproduced from the Contract Flooring Journal website. You can find them at