Battle of the floors: Methyl Methacrylate (MMA) or Everlast® Epoxy?
If you are searching for a durable flooring system to install in a commercial, industrial, or retail facility, you know there are myriads of options that all promise to meet your requirements.
Based on our industry knowledge, we know the choice is often narrowed down to either methyl methacrylate (MMA) or epoxy resin floor. At first glance, both appear to be similar, but when you compare them head to head, you’ll soon see the differences. Should you choose MMA or epoxy resin to get the best value for your budget? Read on to discover which floor system wins out.
Floor preparation time
To ensure that an MMA resin floor will bond to the substrate effectively, the floor has to undergo some preparation before installation can begin: the substrate must be cleaned, dried, and contaminant-free, and all cracks must be properly repaired.
Preparing the surface can be costly, time consuming, and very dusty—none of which are ideal in conditions where cleanliness is important, such as industrial kitchens or medical facilities.
In contrast, Everlast® Epoxy is fast, easy to install, and requires very minimal preparation. The one-step application can be troweled directly onto most existing substrates and left to cure. A clear coat of glaze can then be applied as a final step to give your new floor a shine and make it even easier to clean.
Fast-curing for minimal downtime
When replacing a failed floor or installing a brand new one, an important consideration is how long the floor will take to cure. Closing your facility to lay a floor can disrupt your business and cause a costly headache, so it’s important to choose wisely.
It’s easy to assume that MMA is the best option for a fast-curing floor, as it cures quicker than an epoxy resin–based floor. But do not be fooled! Because it cures so quickly, the MMA resin does not have sufficient time to penetrate deep into the substrate. This leaves a floor that is prone to peeling up soon after installation.
Everlast® Epoxy flooring is also fast to cure (it can be installed overnight and be ready for foot traffic the following day). With this little extra time to seep down into the substrate, epoxy resin floors will form an impenetrable, seamless and waterproof bond, meaning you will not have to replace your floor for many years to come.
Which is the healthiest flooring choice?
MMA may cure very rapidly, but it comes at a cost. During the curing process, proper ventilation is essential because the polymer emits dangerous fumes while it dries.
According to a report by the World Health Organization, prolonged exposure to MMA can cause a chronic cough. Skin irritations have also been attributed to acute contact with the substance, as well as additional side effects such as eye, nose, and throat irritations; nausea; and dizziness.
In contrast, Everlast® Epoxy contains no solvents and is almost odorless when curing, which means your business can remain open and productive without any health hazards to staff or visitors to your facility.
Resistant to chemicals, alkalis, and acids
When researching your options for a new flooring system, you may have discovered that MMA and epoxy floors are resistant to acids, alkalis, chemicals, and solvents. Generally, MMA only provides resistance to weak acids and does not provide the same level of protection as an epoxy flooring system will.
Everlast® Epoxy flooring has been tested to its limits: even when it has been fully saturated in a wide range of chemicals, including isopropyl, potassium hydroxide, household cleaners such as Pinesol, and hydraulic fluid, it showed no signs of pitting, deterioration, or severe staining.
We also immerse our flooring for a full seven days to test its chemical resistance to its limits, unlike most other companies, who test for just twenty-four hours.
MMA and epoxy resin are well known for their temperature-resistant properties, and both flooring options can withstand temperatures up to 140°F. At the other end of the spectrum, both flooring solutions operate well in cold conditions, making them a great choice for walk-in fridges and chillers for the food industry.
There may not be much to differentiate between MMA and epoxy resin when it comes to floor installation in environments subjected to high or low temperatures. However, when you consider all the other parameters, epoxy resin wins out as the smart choice in the battle of the floors.
Choose Everlast® Epoxy flooring
When it comes to choosing between MMA or epoxy resin flooring, the benefits of an epoxy flooring system are clear.
For a long-lasting flooring solution that offers a healthier, more durable option, speak to the Everlast® team today. Call (800) 708-9870 for more details or request a free sample to see just how effective your new epoxy flooring system can be.
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