A conventional industrial warehouse floor is usually a concrete structure that should be characterized by its strength and durability.
The strength of an industrial floor should resist to factors, ranging from heavy machinery and people traffic loads to the influence, of the environment.
In relation to its characteristics, an industrial floor must be planar, non-slip, hygienic and waterproof to guarantee safety in a working environment.
Below we will detail the physical, chemical and mechanical characteristics of an industrial flooring.
Physical characteristics of an industrial floor
From a physical point of view, an industrial floor must meet the following characteristics:
An industrial flooring must flat and level in all directions at any place or point in a warehouse, storage room or logistics centre. This mainly implies that the flooring will be characterized by having a planar surface.
It’s very important that the industrial flooring is composed of granular material that is tightly bonded and densified once the concrete mass hardens. This ensures that the mix will reach an optimum hardness and optimum strength and durability.
An industrial concrete floor has a porous structure with microscopic empty spaces in the form of pores, which can be occupied by liquid substances such as water or other types of chemical substances.
Water and chemical substances are detrimental to the internal structure of an industrial flooring, decreasing its resistance and durability when reacting with the concrete.
It’s recommended that an industrial flooring has a minimum liquid absorption in order to protect its internal integrity, as well as to efficiently carry out any maintenance work.
Low thermal conductivity in industrial flooring has many advantages. It’s very important that it has a high resistance against abrupt temperature variations, regardless of whether they are caused by the environment or by industrial activities.
Mechanical characteristics of an industrial floor
The mechanical aspect defines the following characteristics of a well-built flooring:
Machinery, racks and vehicles all represent heavy loads and, consequently, generate pressure on the concrete floor structure.
Compression is the most predominant force an industrial floor will be exposed to, so it should be designed to withstand heavy loads. Industrial floors are usually built with concrete, a material with high resistance to compression (bearing loads of 20MPa).
Despite the fact that concrete is a material weak to tensile stresses, an industrial floor must be a structure capable of withstanding them.
For this reason, industrial concrete floors needs to be reinforced with mesh or fibers (metal, plastic, etc …) to improve its tensile strength and adapt to the load conditions during the usage of an industrial facility.
The constant transit of machinery produces superficial wear on the industrial floor, which gradually leads to the release of harmful dust.
Abrasion is the main cause of dust generation. It’s essential to improve this aspect to extend the useful life of the structure and guarantee adequate industrial safety conditions.
Due to fortuitous, random and / or accidental circumstances, an industrial flooring may suffer damage due to the impact of materials, equipment, etc… Generating damage on the surface that compromises both its functionality and the aesthetics.
A hard and resistant industrial floor is capable of resisting the impact of any heavy object, preserving the floors regularity.
The probability of slipping on an industrial floor must be minimal, as it can cause major accidents.
Slips are caused when there is a loss of grip between the industrial floor and the movement of machinery or people.
A flooring must be non-slip for the benefit of industrial safety and the productive well-being of the industry.
Chemical characteristics of an industrial floor
Lastly, taking into account the chemical approach, an industrial floor is characterized by the following:
Aggressive chemical agents deteriorate the industrial flooring. When inserted into the pores and microscopic spaces of the concrete surface, they dissolve the flooring’s most susceptible components.
To improve resistance against aggressive chemical agents, the floor must present an optimal finish, according to the productive activities and the type of industry.
The industrial floor finish will seal the pores and minimize chemical agents affecting the concrete surface.
Industrial flooring is frequently exposed to the environment and comes into contact with moisture.
Moisture can penetrate through surface pores and chemically react to certain concrete components, structurally weakening the floor.
BECOSAN® floor finish gains prominence, sealing the pores and protecting the surface against the penetration of moisture and increasing its chemical resistance.
The micro-roughness of a concrete floor, that is, the microscopic irregularity of its surface, implies that it’s difficult to keep clean.
An industrial floor must be characterized by having a smooth surface, that doesn’t generate dust and that is easy to remove adhered substances through cleaning and maintenance techniques.
The purpose of a hygienic floor is to maintain its aesthetics, cleanliness and a commitment to industrial safety.