In places like garages, public storage facilities, and warehouses, you’ll be hard pressed to find some extravagant or fancy flooring option such as hardwood or tile. That’s probably because these locations tend to see substantially harsher applications. From the storage of goods to the place where heavy-duty equipment is used, these locations have to be well suited to stand up against wide-ranging abuse. Concrete, which happens to be the most widely used man-made material in the world, is perfectly suited to be the main flooring structure in such locations. And it makes sense—after all, we build homes, gates, dams, and even runways out of this stuff! However, that doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s resistant to damage. Chips and cracks are common occurrences upon concrete surfaces that hurt its structural integrity and can even cause it to become a slip and trip hazard. Rubber floor mats can help protect your concrete floors by taking the brunt of damage from fallen objects. A custom rubber mat, placed along a workstation, can provide comfort, slip resistance, and a number of other great qualities—but it can definitely protect your heavy-duty floors. Rubber runner mats will safeguard hallways and corridors through which heavy and bulky objects are transferred. Using black rubber matting will even help to clearly define walkable areas all while maintaining a unified and conformed professional appearance.
It may seem counter intuitive to use specialized rubber surfacing to protect a floor that was already intended for heavy-duty applications. However, the use of rubber floor mats can reduce a number of challenges that may arise if concrete suffers excessive damage—like time-consuming and expensive repair and replacement costs. Check out these 5 factors that often lead to concrete damage and how using rubber runner mats can aid in their prevention.
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Rubber Floor Mats—A Heavy-Duty Product
According to Gopal Mishra, the author and creator of TheConstructor.Org, “seasonal temperature changes cause higher stresses than daily temperature changes [in concrete], and they result in more extensive cracking. In, some cases, cracks developed at low temperatures may close when the concrete temperature increases in the summer. If dirt or debris enters the crack when the openings are at their maximum, an increase in temperature will cause the compressive stresses to develop… if large compressive stresses are developed due to the expansion of the concrete, the slab may buckle upward and crack.” While rubber is a great insulator, it may not do much to protect concrete from wide-range changes in temperature, however using rubber floor mats can help prevent dirt and debris from entering cracks that may result in far more extensive damage.
Concrete can expand and contract due to the amount of moisture that it is exposed to. Mishra explains, “as concert drying occurs, the portion of concrete near the surface will dry and shrink faster than the inner portion of the concrete. This drying and shirking of the concrete surface will cause the concrete surface to develop tensile stresses and possible cracks.” Black rubber matting won’t just look good, but the water resistance of this material makes it an impermeable barrier that will help to keep excessive moisture off of your concrete surface.
- Chemical Factors
Mishara states that, “the resistance of concrete to deterioration processes triggered by chemical reactions involves generally, but not necessarily, chemical interactions between aggressive agents present in the external environment and the constituents of the cement paste.” Concrete will break down when this paste is attacked by aggressive agents, mainly high concentration of salts left behind after evaporation which is later returned to solution when moisture once again is present. Again, rubber runner mats and other rubberized flooring options are perfectly suited to behave as a barrier between the aggressive agents present in external environment and the concrete itself.
- Biological Factors
Mold, mildew, and mosses are all things that can cause potential damage to concrete. Because these organisms can produce aggressive agents that could deal some wide-ranging damage to the cement paste—it is better to prevent their growth. A custom rubber mat can be cut to fit specific locations—so say, areas that see a good deal of moisture, where mold may be a serious concern. Rubber is naturally resistant to water and can inhibits the growth of mold and mildew, and produces a harsh environment where bacteria has a hard time thriving.
- Physical Factors
It goes without saying that concrete is a tough surfacing option. It is designed and used for heavy-duty applications—however, as we previously stated, that doesn’t mean that it is completely resistant to damage. Dropped objects, heavy weights, sharp edges—all of these things can lead to damage such as chipping, cracking, and unsightly scratches. Placing a custom rubber mat in locations where you know objects are often dropped, such as weight stations, workout areas, assembly lines, and workstations can help prevent this sort of damage. Rubber floor mats can also be used extensively to help protect far wider and larger areas where the risk of damage may not be immediately apparent.
While concrete is obviously strong and well suited for harsh and abrasive environments, it is still susceptible to wear and tear. Unfortunately, the repair and replacement of this flooring option is pretty difficult, expensive, and time-consuming. So rather than risk major operations to break, remove, and re-pour concrete flooring—why not protect what you already have with rubber runner mats? And while black rubber matting could add a professional touch to any location, at its very core it is a resilient, tough, and durable option that will take the brunt force that comes from heavy-duty environments. After all, it’s definitely easier to replace a rubberized surface than a six inch thick concrete floor.