One of the
most luxurious ways to achieve a slick, modern look is to install a poured
resin or concrete floor. Here, we explain how it’s done.
What is a
poured floor? It\’s a surface that is installed in situ using a material in its
liquid state, such as resin or concrete. The solution sets to form a smooth,
solid and hard-wearing finish.
one? It\’ll help you to achieve a unified look in your home. Poured floors connect
spaces and help the architecture flow in a way that modular types of flooring
How do I
choose between concrete and resin? What distinguishes poured flooring products
from others is the material that binds them. Concrete and micro-concrete (a
thinner alternative) are cementitious, meaning that they are bonded by cement.
These materials carry a risk of cracking and have a high carbon footprint due
to the amount of energy required to produce them, but they do come with the
benefit of an organic-looking finish.
creates a seamless poured floor that looks high maintenance, but is actually
stain-resistant and easy to clean
floors are most commonly composed of one of three substances: epoxy, a low-cost
option that is most suited to industrial use; polyurethane, a flexible,
crack-free material that offers comfort underfoot and color that does not fade;
and biopolymer, a natural option derived from plant oils. While biopolymer’s
performance is similar to that of polyurethane, it is free from toxic chemicals
and, by mixing it with quartz and stones, you can make it look like polished
materials that mimic the appearance of concrete, such as pastel lone, are
composed of lime and gypsum plasters with acrylic fillers and pigments. All of
these options are applied with a trowel (like plaster) rather than being
resin has an \”elastic\” quality that produces a more seamless finish
than concrete when used to cover large areas of floor.
Do you need
a specialist to install one? Yes. Pouring a concrete or resin floor is
definitely a job for the professionals.
How to pour
concrete floor? In theory, a poured floor can be applied to any stable surface.
A layer of screed – a mix of sand and cement – should be added above any under
floor heating pipes before the flooring is poured on top. This protective layer
takes at least a month to dry out. Be warned: the most common reason for
imperfect results is a finish being applied while the screed is still damp.
with existing floorboards (as opposed to new builds), preparing the substrate
involves taking up the joisted timber and laying a damp-proof membrane and
plywood boards before screeding. This creates a strong, air- and water-tight
you’re using resin, the liquid is poured on layer by layer over a period of
three to five days. For concrete, if your home is large enough for a floor
depth of 100 millimeters and access for the machinery required to install it, a
slab can be poured into place in one go and power-trowelled, while wet, to
create a smooth finish.
you have a poured floor? In any interior space; it’s not a great option for
outdoors because, once laid, it can become slippery when exposed to the
elements. A poured concrete floor is normally only suitable for ground-level
installation because of the risk of cracking. The finish can also be applied to
staircases, but it’s a tricky, labor-intensive and costly process.
are poured floors? They are stain- and water- resistant, as well as being effective
at absorbing sound, muting the click of heels. Concrete is much harder than
resin options: if you drop a glass on a resin floor it will bounce, whereas on
concrete it would shatter. In terms of maintenance, a poured floor should be
treated in much the same way as good-quality timber. To prevent scratching,
avoid dragging furniture across it, and, to clean it, use a microfiber mop, hot
water and a non-soap-based product. More care will be needed to keep white or
other light-colored floors clean. If that all seems a bit too much like hard
work, opt for a biopolymer resin floor instead. This hardy option just needs to
be re-sealed with a fresh top coat every ten years or so.
and finishes are there? Resin comes in virtually any color you can imagine.
Cementitious floors tend to be less vibrant, but can be stained with pigment –
the most popular options are shades of grey. The floors can be buffed and
polished to create a sleek surface or left with a more natural, matt look.