What’s happening in this video… Urethane cement mortar [Mortarthane™ HF] being applied in a walk in cooler at meat processing facility. Mortarthane™ HF was specified to resurface a pitted concrete floor to resist thermal shock from daily hot water wash downs.
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Frequently asked questions about coating floors in low temperatures…
In a frozen meat locker where a constant cold temperature must be maintained, how is the concrete floor prepared for floor coatings?
The whole floor needs to be torched with a propane torch or the like. According to manufacturer recommendations there should always be a temperature of 40 and above on a concrete slab when you are applying urethane cement, the preferred system under such circumstances. An industrial flooring coating, such as an epoxy floor coating should also be applied in at least room temperature.
Therefore compensating steps must be taken to bring the temperature of the slab into the recommended temperature range. Under such circumstances there is very little time to apply the urethane floor coating. The colder the temperature the higher the material viscosity will rise.
So the colder the temperature, the higher the viscosity or thickness, and the harder it is to apply to the floor. If you have a hotter floor, and you are operating in 70 to 80 degrees inside, the material will stay looser.
Room temperature is the ideal for application of concrete floor coatings in cold environments
In freezing conditions, there have been installations in temperatures ranging from 31 degrees to 36 degrees where the contractor has taken all steps to bring the slab in spec. range through torching and they work extremely fast to get the work done.
Torching accomplishes bringing the moisture out of the slab and heats the floor as fast as possible. A freezer shutdown is not an option for most owner managers.
Most of the freezers that are in meat processing areas have to remain cold at 31 to 36 degrees. In some cases, a contractor will begin the resurfacing job just like any other floor, shot blast the concrete floor using the correct vacuum ports for a dust free preparation process.
This is followed by a thorough torching of the floor to remove all frozen moisture in the slab and assist in keeping the surface temperature high enough to apply the urethane mortar.
The material is applied just like any other floor. Putting the strongest men on the front line to trowel helps with any difficulty that may manifest itself if the material stiffens while exposed to the cold. Floor coatings applied in low temperatures set rapidly, so a strong quick team is essential for proper application.
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