Polyurea Coatings: The Basics
Monday, May 7, 2018
Polyurea derives from the Polyurethane family and is remarkably versatile; known for its excellent adhesion, abrasion resistance and ability to fight corrosive material, as well as it powerful long-lasting coating, waterproofing capabilities and an amazingly fast cure time. Polyurea is the leading solution in protective coatings.
Polyurea is an excellent coating, robust enough for heavy duty use in commercial applications. It is very tough and unyielding to most chemicals. We spray 100% Polyurea with high pressure, high-temperature system. It hardens in fewer than 10 seconds so you get an even, fine grain factory polished look. We can also add extra character for a traction-enhanced exterior to high traffic areas, walkways, bumpers, stairs, and any other places that may need to be skid proof.
Polyurea is remarkably durable & resistant to chemicals, it is ideal for large duty work! Whether you are looking to guard against rust & corrosion, need a non-skid coating or want a tough, durable emergency coating, Polyurea is more than likely the answer for you.
Ramps, large sized coolers and freezers, restaurant kitchens and grocery stores, decks, porches and balconies, commercial pools, concrete foundations, aquariums, and ponds.
Street sweepers, utility trucks, sidestep vans, horse trailers & freight liners, tankers, RV trailers
Ambulances, armored panels, spray rigs, interior cab floorboards, boat floors and trailers, garbage trucks and transport containers.
The possibilities are limitless. Our specialists can advise the best coating system based on your requirements.
Polyurea comes in basic black or we can custom match any color. Contact us now to discuss how Polyurea Coatings can enhance your ensuing project!
The latest coating technology is polyurea. Formed during the late 1980s for the automotive trade, this material is presently used in a wide array of purposes. Use of this material as technical waterproofing has skyrocketed in the business in the past decade due to its fast-curing, corrosion- and abrasion-resistant qualities.
Hank S., director of market development and training at ArmorThane Corporation, explains, "Polyurea was invented in the early 1980s when a less moisture-sensitive class of polyurethane was wanted. By replacing the hydroxyl group in the urethane with an amine group, a product we now call polyurea was created. It has significantly less sensitivity to moisture than different urethane-based coatings."
Of the two most common kinds of polyureas, aromatic polyureas are by far the most common. Phelan calls them "the workhorse of the business offering a wide variety of mechanical characteristics for various applications." In fact, about the only aspect, these coatings do not provide is UV stability.
A second formulation, aliphatic polyureas, use complex chemistry to produce UV stability. This added benefit begins at a price as aliphatic polyureas are typical twice the rate of aromatic polyureas.
Benefits Of Polyurea
One reason polyurea coatings are exploding in popularity is the wide variety of positive attributes they exhibit.
The industry website, polyurea.com, opens with a bold statement. "Virtually no other coating can compare to polyurea when it comes to attainable physical parts," it reads. "Polyureas can be formed to achieve a tremendous spectrum of resources from high elongation to superior tensile force to hard or soft, all based on how the materials is formed and correctly applied."
It adheres tenaciously to a modification of different substrates (concrete, metals, wood and more) without primers and in a wide range of heat and moisture environments.
Conceivably its most significant benefit is that it sets up remarkably quickly, allowing the applicator to build up a finished thickness in a single pass. This allows the owner to put the plant back in service several times quicker than conventional coatings, accumulating days or even weeks of revenue failed to fluff-time.
Phelan says, "Thicknesses can range from 20 mils to 500 mils in one form. Cure presents range from instantaneous to two minutes allowing for a quick return to service."
As fast curing, thick film coating, polyurea is a logical solution when seamless, durable membranes remain needed for waterproofing. Additional characteristics such as slip-resistant additives and surface textures can also be incorporated. It can be distorted and is even available in a potable-water-approved formulation.
With such a wide range of performance characteristics, the scope of suitable applications is also large. Tank linings, secondary containment, and bridge coatings are some of the most common uses, but the application possibilities are endless.
The technology has been employed successfully on pedestrian decks and parking garages, tanks, tunnels, rain tanks, slurry pits, and flooring. It can also be developed as a joint filler/caulk.
Polyurea was originally employed as a truck bed liner to form a permanent watertight layer. The same old and abrasive-resistant characteristics that make it perfect for lining truck beds and dump trucks make it attractive for complex waterproofing projects.
The containers at wastewater processing plants, for example, are exposed to erosion, and massive amounts of hydrogen sulfide gas when the contents are screened, mixed and dewatered.
Polyurea coatings can supply the abrasion, chemical, and impact resistance needed, and restore the plant to operating condition faster than many other competing systems.
Polyurea does have a few drawbacks. The equipment required to utilize polyurea coatings can be expensive for one. It can range from $5,000 to $50,000 or more. Fully equipped mobile platforms can cost upwards of $100,000.
The chemical also costs more than some alternatives. The initial costs are greater than epoxies, but since polyurea coatings can last three to five times longer, it becomes considerably more cost-effective over the lifetime of the surface.
As with any waterproofing substance, it can collapse if applied inappropriately. Surface preparation —usually sandblasting or priming—is crucial for a successful application. Most failed polyurea coating projects have little to do with the polyurea itself, but rather, inadequate or poorly implemented exterior preparation.
Most polyureas used for waterproofing are spray-applied with plural component spray equipment.
It's typically transmitted as a two-part operation, with the amine resin blend and isocyanate material supplied in 55-gallon drum sets. Once in use on the project site, they are transported from 55-gallon drums to separate containers in the spray machine where they are cooked to the appropriate temperature (140°F-160°F). The device then delivers the isocyanate and polyol resin through heated lines to the spray gun in a precise ratio (usually 1:1).
Polyurea has a set time that is estimated in seconds, so it's crucial that the chemicals don't mix until the instant before they leave the gun. Otherwise, the compound will set and harden inside of the spray gun.
Several companies sell mobile spray rigs that include all of the tools and equipment needed, mounted on either a trailer or truck bed.