Epoxy resin flooring is a versatile flooring system that works well in residential, commercial, and industrial settings alike. It is extremely durable, attractive, and resistant to chemicals, stains, heat, and water. But a question that many people have is "Are epoxy floors slippery?" And the answer to that is a little complicated. Epoxy flooring alone is actually skid resistant but when you add water into the mix, it can get very slippery indeed. But there is a range of anti-slip additive options that can prevent slips even when the floor is wet.
At the Epoxy Gang, we understand how crucial it is that your epoxy floor is fit for purpose and is a safe surface for everyone who uses it. That's why we will work with you to understand the uses of the space the epoxy flooring will be in and to decide what anti-slip approaches may need to be taken.
An epoxy floor is created by mixing semi-liquid resin with a hardener before rolling it onto a prepared base. The mixing of the two components creates a chemical reaction that hardens the resin into a tough, durable material with high impact resistance.
Some of the benefits of epoxy flooring include:
You will often see epoxy garage floors due to the resin's ability to withstand heavy loads but you will also see it in commercial spaces that have a lot of heavy foot traffic, showrooms, commercial kitchens, laboratories, outdoor areas, and residential homes.
Dig deeper: What Is Epoxy Flooring
You might be surprised to learn that one of the features of an epoxy coating is slip resistance. Its high gloss surface definitely looks slippery but, in fact, it is anything but. So if you are concerned about slip hazards, an epoxy floor can be a great choice.
Unfortunately, the addition of water can interfere with the skid-resistant nature of epoxy surfaces. An epoxy coating creates an extremely smooth finish and, as with all smooth surfaces, water can make it slippery very easily.
The added complication with epoxy floors compared to other flooring types is that they are waterproof. No moisture that is spilt on the epoxy coating will absorb into the resin so you will be left with a pool of water sitting on top of the surface.
You can also check out our post "Is Epoxy Resin Flooring Waterproof" for additional insights.
Thankfully, there are a few methods you can use to reduce the slipperiness of your epoxy flooring. Let's take a look at them.
You may not need to do anything at all to your epoxy floors if they are unlikely to get wet regularly. Remember that it is only under wet conditions that the epoxy floor will get slippery. So if your flooring will be in a space that won't be exposed to spills or moisture, then it will retain its anti-skid properties.
For something like a garage floor, commercial kitchen, or entranceway, however, where there will be regular exposure to spills and water, it can be worth looking into other options.
The quickest and simplest method is to lay down some mats to prevent slips and falls. This could be rubber or vinyl mats, containment mats, or even carpet runners with non-slip grips.
Of course, this solution only works if there are specific areas of the floor that are likely to get wet. For example, a containment mat by a door is a good idea because water is likely to get tracked in from outside and the mat will help to absorb this.
Getting into a routine of removing any spills as quickly as possible can stop epoxy floors from getting slippery. The water won't absorb into the surface at all so you need to remove it yourself and the sooner you do this, the less chance there is that it will create a hazard.
If the spill contains any other hazardous material it is even more important that it is cleaned up immediately. And, even though epoxy floors are stain-resistant, the longer you leave a staining liquid on the floor the more chance there is that it could create a stain or damage the surface.
For more learnings, you can check out our post "How To Clean Epoxy Resin Floors".
There is a wide range of additives available that can introduce anti-slip properties even when your floor is wet. The type you choose will depend on how the floor is used.
It is usually better to consider the need for anti-slip additives before the epoxy is laid over your concrete floor. Mixing the additives into the final layer when the epoxy is still wet will ensure that they are fully integrated into the coating.
You can add an anti-slip topcoat to an already laid epoxy floor but this won't be as durable and tough and the topcoat may need replacing after some time.
If you need expert advice about whether or not you will need an anti-slip additive and the best one to use for your situation, don't hesitate to get in touch.
Most anti-slip additives rely on introducing aggregates into the resin. This makes the surface less smooth and creates friction that will prevent slips and falls. Different aggregates have different properties that can make them more or less suitable depending on the space the floor will be in.
Quartz is a popular anti-slip additive. It is hard-wearing, chemical resistant, and tough but it is also decorative. If you are worried about the anti-slip additions ruining the aesthetics of your epoxy floor, then this can be a great choice. This choice is perfect for a commercial or office setting where there will be a lot of foot traffic.
Check out: Commercial Resin Flooring
Silica sand is another popular choice. The sand can be dyed to introduce attractive colours into the surface so it is another decorative option that also feels nice underfoot. It isn't suitable for areas with heavy traffic, however, as too much weight can cause the sand to create small cracks in the epoxy surface. So you wouldn't want to use this for an epoxy garage floor or something similar.
Flake epoxy floors are more suitable for an industrial setting and garage flooring. They are easy to clean, can withstand heavy foot and vehicle traffic, and are very durable. They aren't as attractive as some of the other options.
For epoxy flooring in a heavy industrial setting where there is a strong need for durability and impact resistance, aluminium oxide is a good choice. It provides maximum grip so you can be certain that there will be no slips. It isn't nice for walking on, however, so it isn't really suited for a commercial or residential setting.
Shark Grip consists of small ground polymer flakes that can be added to epoxy floors to create a slip-resistant surface. This product feels nice underfoot because there are no sharp edges but it doesn't have the strength and durability needed for an industrial setting.
If you are considering installing an epoxy floor and want to know about your different anti-slip options, the Epoxy Gang can help. We are an experienced, knowledgeable, and reputable epoxy flooring company and we have a deep understanding of the nature of epoxy flooring and the different ways in which it can be made more slip resistant.
We are also aware of the varying needs of different types of spaces and will help you to choose the right anti-slip method that will work best for your property.
If you already have an epoxy floor and you want to add a non-slip topcoat, we can talk you through your options and develop a solution that works for you.
Are epoxy floors slippery? When they are dry, definitely not. The epoxy is naturally skid resistant. They can get quite slippery when wet, however, because of their smooth surface and waterproofing. For spaces where there is likely to be a lot of liquid spills on the floor, including anti-slip additives can prevent an epoxy floor from being slipper by providing more grip and reducing the smoothness of the floor.