Homeowners’ desire to upgrade external areas such as terraces and patios saw a massive boom during last year’s spring-summer lockdowns and there’s no sign of this slackening off. Setcrete Brand Manager Peter Wilson outlines the importance of suitable sub floor preparation products to ensure the optimum results, and explains how merchants can capitalise from the sustained demand.
One of the specific trends driving the growth in garden space upgrades is the notion of extending the internal living space through bi-fold or sliding doors to an external patio, using porcelain floor tiles to achieve a seamless visual transition from the inside to the outside.
Porcelain tiles are one of the few floor finishes that work equally well externally as internally. And in addition to delivering a smart, high quality aesthetic, porcelain tiles are able to withstand the varying seasonal weather conditions experienced in the UK whilst also being easy to clean and maintain.
However, achieving ‘the look’ requires perfect preparation of the subfloor base to ensure the external floor maintains the aesthetic quality of the interior.
To deliver a professional, high quality finish when installing tiles externally, the same level of subfloor preparation is required as would be used for interior installations. Specifically, the subfloor base needs to be as smooth and level as possible.
Internally, job-specific levelling compounds are used to create a smooth finish over the sand/cement subfloor screed. The same methodology is required for external areas, but requires an exterior grade levelling compound — which is why Setcrete Exterior was developed.
The advanced floor levelling compound was developed specifically for outdoor applications, to smooth and level rough, worn or mechanically-damaged concrete or sand/cement screeds before installing an external floor covering, including porcelain tiles, and also artificial grass or other finishes. It is also finding applications preparing pathways, balconies and other hard areas.
In addition, the levelling compound can be left uncovered and used as an exterior standalone wearing surface or painted over with a suitable floor paint, for example, in converting a garage into a gym or just to create a smarter appearance for a garage floor.
It is the speed of preparation and drying, combined with the integrity of the levelling compound when set and cured that is giving rise to its popularity and the consequent increase in demand. Given the cost of porcelain tiles, builders want a quick, worry-free way of achieving a perfect base that gives them the foundation on which to create a superb finish.
Setcrete Exterior has found a niche in this sector, being an easy-to-use floor levelling compound that delivers an ultra-smooth finish in a short timescale and, importantly, is designed to withstand the varying climatic changes we experience throughout the year.
Once builders have used the product, they instantly see its benefits and also the possibilities of using it in other applications — so repeat purchases and word of mouth, along with a sustained promotional campaign, have all been factors behind its rise in popularity.
Merchant support for Setcrete Exterior and other products in the range includes the provision of branded point-of-sale displays, complementing eye-catching, colour-coded packaging designed to simplify product selection, tailored product training for merchant staff, and in-branch product demonstration days for merchant customers.
For more information, visit www.setcrete.co.uk
Merchant Trade Demonstration Days
Setcrete is rolling out a series of builders’ merchant trade demonstration days across the UK to support stockists of the firm’s range of floor levelling compounds by providing practical, live demonstrations of the products’ capabilities.
Key products being demonstrated at the events include best sellers Setcrete Exterior, an outdoor levelling compound which can withstand rain and frost; Setcrete Deep Base for raising floor levels up to 50mm; Setcrete 2K Pro that can be applied over old adhesive residues; fibre-reinforced Setcrete High Performance for use over flexible subfloors such as plywood; and Setcrete Rapid Set 30, which is walk on hard after just 30 minutes.
Setcrete has already hosted trade days at branches of Travis Perkins, MKM Building Supplies and Tippers since early July and is scheduled to hold further events during the coming months. Stockists can arrange a trade day at their branch by calling the company on 01538 361633, emailing email@example.com or speaking to their technical sales representative.
Setcrete Brand Manager Peter Wilson said: “The demo days are hugely popular amongst builders and merchants alike. As well as being able to show how easy the products are to use, the demonstrations are able to highlight the real benefits of each product, whether that’s in terms of speed of application, reliability or long-term performance.”