The application of epoxies can be fraught with danger. If the job goes wrong it can be difficult and costly to fix resulting in undue stress for the applicator. It usually occurs at the worst possible time when there is pressure to hand the floor over quickly.
As with any of these problematic situations, prevention is the key. If you are properly prepared, with the correct knowledge, tools and products, you’re well in front.
Pinholes are usually the result of the formation of air bubbles in the epoxy as it is being applied. Although they may not be visible initially and only appear after curing, rest assured they would have been present right from the start.
Below are some tips to eliminate pinholes when applying epoxies.
Moisture & Humidity
The existence of moisture and humidity can cause all types of problems including blushing, air bubbles and delamination. It is imperative that epoxies are applied to a dry surface. The key is to moisture test the concrete with a moisture meter to be sure. Moisture meters are an essential and inexpensive tool that every epoxy applicator should use. In all cases an epoxy/primer sealer should be applied as a first step in the process.
Every concrete floor is different, and the porosity of the concrete plays a major part in causing air bubbles and blisters. It is essential that the concrete is first treated with an epoxy primer/sealer. If the concrete is extremely porous, then a second coat of primer/sealer should be applied.
Spiked Rollers & Shoes
These are two tools that every epoxy applicator should have with them, and use on every single job. Spiked rollers serve two purposes:
1 To burst and eradicate air bubbles, blisters and gas pockets to prevent pinholes
2 To help achieve a smooth, uniform and evenly dispersed epoxy finish
When mixing the two parts of epoxy, it is much better to have the mixer operating at low speed and to mix for a little longer. Mixing at high speed will create air bubbles. As always, we recommend letting the mixed product sit for a few minutes before use as this gives the product time to deaerate and merge together.
Product Quality & Adding Solvent
You only get what you pay for! Most quality epoxies contain defoaming additives. Cheap products generally don’t – that’s why they’re cheap! Likewise, many applicators add solvent to the product. When the solvent evaporates it can be the cause of pinholes as some of the air bubbles won’t burst when the solvent vaporises. If adding solvent don’t overdo it, only use a small volume!
If you require any assistance or advice in regard to using & applying coatings please do not hesitate to contact us.