Applying anti-slip coatings on the flooring in a warehouse is a proactive way to help people stay safe. These facilities typically have high-traffic areas, and appropriate flooring ensures individuals have the traction needed to move efficiently through the space.
Before settling on the best anti-slip coating, there are several relevant considerations, including:
- Desired appearance.
- Activity levels.
- Coating lifespan.
- Installation timeframes.
Something to keep in mind is that you can use floor coatings alongside other measures, such as mats.
Here are some of the broad categories of anti-slip coatings you’ll see that are appropriate for warehouse floors.
Epoxy is one of the most common types of warehouse floor coatings. It’s strong and durable, with a long lifespan. Because it’s also cost-effective, people typically choose it for large warehouses.
You can also find epoxy chip flooring, which features a complementary material — often thermoplastic — placed into the epoxy coating before it cures. The chip coating gives the epoxy a granite-like appearance, and customers can usually choose the chip color for a stylish finish.
Also, the chips create a slightly textured surface, similar to the skin of an orange. That characteristic results in a non-slip outcome.
Post-consumable crushed glass is a type of slip-resistant performance coating that does not affect the floor’s original color. It appears like white sand before application. However, the layer gives the floor a clear finish that helps people maintain traction while walking.
Plus, if desired, you can combine this coating with a color. Many manufacturing companies take that approach to help people distinguish between different work areas in large factory spaces.
Another beneficial aspect of this coating is that it can withstand heavy-duty cleaning practices, such as degreasing. Maintenance personnel can treat it like any other hard flooring because it’s easy to sweep dirt and dust off the surface.
Sticking to a good floor care routine is an excellent way to ensure the kind of performance you expect over time. As Kevin Klotz, president of Coatings For Industry, noted, “A floor that’s not cared for will certainly have a much lower lifespan than one that is. That care can range from basic cleaning to applying coatings to your floor, but either way — as with most things — you’ll certainly extend the life of your asset by taking care of it.”
The coatings in this category typically apply as liquids, like paints. You’ll also see specific urethane mixtures specifically marketed as anti-slip, so be sure to check the label before purchasing a certain kind.
Compared to epoxy topcoats, ones made from urethane have more resistance to chemicals and solvents. They also withstand abrasion, making them smart choices for parts of a warehouse with a high level of foot or vehicular traffic. You can find these topcoats as glossy, clear options with anti-slip or skid features integrated into the mixture.
When coating a smooth surface like concrete to enhance the floor, some people believe they can immediately start applying the coating. However, statistics suggest that surface preparation shortcomings cause up to 80% of cases where coatings prematurely fail.
Abrasive blasting is one common option. It involves using compressed air to direct dry or moist particles onto a surface for cleaning purposes before applying a layer.
Many concrete paints with anti-slip properties contain epoxy. Thus, they give you another option to consider if you’re interested in epoxy but want to explore a possibility other than adding a gritty texture to the coating, as suggested earlier.
You’ll often see this product marketed as “grip paint.” One of its benefits is that some coatings in this category last for at least 15 years. Most work well indoors or out, so you may decide to apply it to heavy-traffic areas outside of the warehouse’s walls, too.
People who only need to address small areas or want options that install quickly often become interested in films. These anti-slip coatings have adhesive on one side, and you can typically cut them to size before applying them to a clean surface.
The film comes on a roll, and you stick it directly on top of surfaces ranging from concrete to tile. Besides helping people stay steady on their feet, film-style coatings also often provide moisture resistance. Most can handle cleaning with standard procedures and cleansing formulas.
Tapes are similar to films in that they’re best suited for giving slip-resistance qualities to relatively small areas rather than your whole warehouse floor. For example, you might apply it near where people frequently wash their hands or across parts of the floor with elevation changes, such as ramps.
One of the primary advantages of tapes is that they stick to irregular surfaces. You can also find them in varying widths and lengths. Because tapes come in different grit varieties, it’s easy to purchase the types best suited for your needs.
After installing the tape, monitor it for signs that it’s time to replace it. Tape is a shorter-term solution than some of the others addressed here. However, it’s easy to replace when needed, such as if the color begins to fade or you notice curling at the tape’s edges.
Floor coating may seem like a relatively small part of your company’s safety plan. However, since a significant segment of warehouse accidents happen when people slip and fall, choosing the right floor surface is a crucial step in keeping workers safe and performing well.