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Rubber Gym Floor Tiles versus Wet-Pour Rubber Surfacing

Rubber Gym Floor Tiles versus Wet-Pour Rubber Surfacing: A Direct Comparison

Wet-pour rubber surfacing and rubber tiles are different in quite a few ways. Both products were initially used for the same purpose, with the industry evolving to use these products for different projects.

If you’ve been looking into purchasing new flooring for your gym, then this article will help you make a more informed decision.

Durability

Both materials are an improvement over standard wood or tile floors. They offer good energy absorption, slip resistance, easy cleaning, ease of installation, and sound suppression capabilities. 

However, each has advantages that make them better for specific applications. 

For instance, High-quality rubber tiles are durable and can withstand heavy traffic and tough workouts. But compared to wet-pour rubber surfaces, they have a shorter lifespan. The life span of wet-pour rubber surfaces is between 10 and 15 years.

Safety

Both rubber tiles and wet-pour rubber surfacing offer stability and have shock-absorbing and non-slip properties. It also offers traction, making it an ideal floor surface for a gym.

Its shock-absorbing property lessens the impact of injuries from falls by slowing the rate of energy transfer to your body.

Also, both rubber tiles and wet-pour flooring are ADA-complaint, meaning it is slip-resistant, level, and firm. It makes the floor accessible for even people with disabilities.

However, since rubber tiles have a shorter lifespan as compared to wet-pour rubber surfaces, the surface wraps in areas where there are extreme temperature fluctuations. The surface, thus, not only turns into an eyesore, but you can trip and fall.

Also, note that the seams can let water seep into the subfloor. When wet, smooth, un-textured rubber tiles become slippery.

Wet-pour rubber surfacing, on the other hand, is dual-layered and comes with a shock-pad base. It is also long-lasting, does not splinter, and so once installed, you don’t have to worry about it for a long time.   

Moreover, it is water-resistant and offers traction even in wet conditions. It will not absorb water, sweat, or any other liquids. It is a perfect flooring option for moisture-prone areas.

Installation

Rubber tiles are designed for easy installation. Their edges can be interlocked, creating strong connections that won’t separate during use. Due to their size, rubber tiles can be easily carried and installed. You don’t need an adhesive. Plus, you can go for a DIY instead of hiring a professional to install the rubber tiles for you. Unless you are installing it in a very large area, it won’t take much time.

The task of wet-pour rubber surfacing installation is best left to a professional. You will have to buy several tools, and the process is long and complex. The process starts with installing a sub-floor and then priming the surface before you pour the mixed rubber granules and binder. The mixture has to be done in the right ratio. Unless you are a pro yourself, don’t attempt a DIY.   

It usually takes two days to install the wet-pour rubber flooring, depending on the current state of the surface, the area shape, and the specific needs.

Cost

The cost of rubber tile flooring is $10 per square foot total on average. For a 144 square foot room, it will usually cost you between $800 and $1,500. 

Poured-in-place rubber flooring installation cost can sound expensive, but it is cost-effective. Typically, it costs about $16 per square foot or for a room of standard size, $2,300 in total.

Design

Rubber floor tiles come in a plethora of textures and color options. You can pick the perfect colors and shades to match your interior or simply go for solid colors. Rubber floor tiles are usually available in squares, but you can cut them into different sizes and shapes.

Wet-pour rubber surfaces also come in a wide range of colors, and you can incorporate different designs and customize it.

Maintenance and repair

In case some pieces of your rubber floor tiles get damaged, you can easily replace the damaged pieces. You don’t have to replace the whole floor. Rubber tiles can be easily removed, stored, and reused in another location. Rubber floor tiles are also easy to clean.

In the case of wet-pour rubber surfaces, if an area pulls away from the edges, you can cut away the damaged surface from the edge and install a color band.

In case cracks start to appear, you can get rid of the entire shape or the edges of the shape cut out.  Replace it following the same process you used while repairing the edges.

You can also get a complete patch kit that covers small square footage. You will find everything you require to repair the damaged section of your floor.

Wet-pour rubber floors are to be frequently cleaned so that it remains in great shape. Cleaning it at least twice daily is ideal if there is high foot traffic.

Wet-pour flooring also needs topcoat maintenance. Every two years, you can go for a cap coat. It will extend the lifespan of your floor.

Though wet-pour rubber flooring is soft and remains soft for a long time, extreme weather conditions can indeed impact its softness level. With time, the wet-pour rubber floor can become hard. It is thus advisable to conduct an inspection of your floor condition every few years.

When the rubber becomes too hard, you will have to apply a top coat of new rubber. The process of applying the topcoat is easy and quick. A professional can complete the task in no time.

Wrap-Up

Both Rubber Gym Floor Tiles and Wet-Pour Rubber Surfacing are versatile, durable, stain resistant tiles that provide an excellent cushion underneath. Like natural rubber, both materials are creatively used for everything from basketball courts to new floors to auto tires. 

It is always tricky to compare various products that are meant for different purposes, but at the same time have many of the same properties. 

Hopefully this article shed light on both of these flooring options, so you can select the one that best suits your needs.

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Creative Director, Rubcorp Distribution, LLC

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