If you wish you could enjoy spending more time in the garage, you may be interested in applying an epoxy floor coating for its sleek look and ability to protect the floor. Epoxy coatings are durable and long lasting, but what are the risks?
The Risks of Epoxy Floors
Epoxy is the combination of resin and a curing agent. Fully cured epoxy poses few health risks, but liquid and partially cured epoxy can give off potentially harmful chemical fumes. However, these fumes are no more hazardous than your standard can of paint that you can buy at Home Depot!Still, you might be wondering: are epoxy floors safe, or do the dangers outweigh the benefits of this flooring material?
Mitigating the Risks of Epoxy Floors
The health risks associated with exposure to epoxy fumes sound serious, but it’s easy to mitigate them. If you have epoxy installed in your garage, follow these tips to keep you and your children safe.
Avoid the Garage
The easiest way to mitigate risk is to stay out of the garage for 48 hours following the epoxy installation. Fast hardening means you can walk on the coating and even park your car in the garage after just 24 hours, but wait the full two days for a complete cure before you spend any time there.
Ventilate the Garage
To help prevent any fumes from making their way into your home, ventilate the garage as much as possible for the 48hour curing period. This involves leaving the garage door up, propping open the side door and throwing garage windows wide open. For home security purposes, we recommend only following these ventilation tips during the day.
Hire an Installer Who Takes Necessary Precautions
With the potential for fumes filling your garage during the epoxy floor installation process, it’s best to leave the task to an experienced professional who knows what safety precautions to take. Allowing someone else to tackle the job minimizes your own exposure, and choosing installers who wear gloves, goggles and a mask ensures the workers don’t endanger themselves.
Following the Curing Period
Once your new epoxy floor is completely cured, any harmful risks of fumes and chemicals will disappear. In fact, professional epoxy floor coatings are free of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) such as benzene or formaldehyde that are known to cause cancer. With no VOCs to worry about in the long term, you can enjoy the beauty, durability and low-maintenance of epoxy floors without fearing for your family’s health and safety.As with any service of this kind, as longs as it’s handled properly, the benefits far outweigh the risks. To learn more about installing an epoxy floor in your garage, please contact us today.