Ensuring that your floors are slip-resistant is absolutely imperative. Spills, condensation, splash-back, and other sources of liquid can make any brewery a dangerous place. While slip-resistant floors alone cannot prevent disasters, they certainly provide valuable assistance.
If you have already installed flooring in your brewery and find that it is not as slip-resistant as desired, consider adding an anti-slip additive. These coatings significantly reduce the slip-factor of your floors, providing much-needed traction.
Slips and falls result in millions of dollars in damages for facility owners each year. They are the most common cause of on-the-job injuries, yet they are also one of the most preventable. To avoid paying out over $16,000 annually for paid leave, sick days, or even lawsuits, it is essential to ensure that your floors are as slip-resistant as possible.
While slip-resistant floors are great, it is crucial to have a system that can quickly drain excess water in case of spills. This is where proper drainage comes into play. There are various types of drains available, but not all of them are suitable for breweries.
Spot drains require sloping and extra effort to direct liquid towards a small hole in the floor, making them generally unsuitable for breweries.
Trench drains are commonly used, but they are not ideal for breweries. The large grates covering trench drains can deteriorate over time, posing a risk of falling and causing injuries. Additionally, the inside of trench drains is filled with corners and cracks, creating a conducive environment for bacteria growth. Failure to clean these drains properly may lead to illness or contamination.
Slot drains are the most popular choice for brewery drainage. These drains are long and narrow, capable of spanning the entire length of a brewery. Due to their size, slot drains do not require coverings and can be easily traversed by vehicles or pedestrians. They are constructed from stainless steel and designed without corners or cracks, preventing the accumulation of bacteria. The smooth surface of slotted drains allows for straightforward cleaning with a simple flushing solution.
Your brewery floors will not only face spills but also come into contact with various harsh and corrosive chemicals. Whether it is malt enzymes, salt, sugar, yeast, alcohol, acid, or cleaning agents, your floors must withstand these substances without deteriorating.
Ensure that your flooring material is capable of resisting these chemicals, and consider adding a chemical-resistant coating if necessary. To prevent large-scale disasters, both your flooring and its coating need to withstand prolonged exposure to any chemicals they may encounter.
Thermal Shock Resistance
Brewery floors are often subjected to extreme temperature variations, ranging from boiling hot water to near freezing liquids. Average flooring would be damaged by this constant fluctuation, leading to dangerous cracks and fissures due to continuous expansion and contraction of the material.
One of the best ways to prevent floor cracking in breweries is to apply a urethane coating. This substance provides thermal-shock resistance and helps protect floors from developing fissures due to temperature changes. Urethane expands and contracts at a similar rate as concrete slabs, allowing for a natural cycle of expansion and contraction without resulting in cracking or delamination.
To avoid catastrophic failure of your brewery floors, durability is essential. From heavy kegs and tanks to pallets, trolleys, forklifts, hoses, and other heavy machinery, the flooring is subjected to continuous abuse from equipment weighing thousands of pounds or more. This heavy load can cause floors to chip, scrape, crack, and develop dangerous deformities that pose a significant safety hazard for everyone working in the brewery.
If it is not necessary to fortify the entire brewery floor, using epoxy to mark off areas that should not be walked or driven on is a great option.
For areas of flooring designated for heavy equipment and machinery, applying a coating to enhance durability is recommended. Urethane works well in this situation, acting as a sealant while making the floor more resistant to cracking. With a protective coating like urethane, you can freely move heavy equipment and machinery without worrying about damaging the floors.
If there are existing cracks in your flooring, a urethane coating can help prevent them from expanding or further damage caused by seepage.