Time seems to be the thing that we have the least of and the one thing that we cannot afford to lose. This is true in many facets of life and even more relevant in today’s construction climate. Construction schedules demand fast innovative solutions to common construction issues that are related to flooring and tiling installations. Thanks to the development of rapid-setting installation systems, such as self-leveling underlayments, adhesive mortars, quick-curing grouts and innovative thin, light-weight shower systems, tile and flooring contractors are able to meet the demands of a tight timeline without taking any shortcuts or exceeding project budgets.
High Output Self-Leveling Underlayment Solutions
LATICRETE INTERNATIONAL, Inc. technical experts have optimized the formulas and installation methods of self-leveling underlayments so that tile and flooring contractors are able to install required materials in a matter of hours instead of days, which helps reduce the developer’s overall carrying costs on the construction site. New advancements in product technology and delivery methodology have also enabled contractors and installers to produce the exact quantities of self-leveling underlayment needed for each project, dramatically decreasing the amount of waste and cost to the flooring installer.
For example, the LATICRETE® SUPERCAP® Ready-Mix Delivery Service uses half the man hours, when compared to traditional, smaller mixing systems. With the ability to blend and pump up to 30,000 pounds (13,608 kg) per hour — the equivalent of 600 small bags per hour — this revolutionary development for the tile and flooring industry benefits the entire project from design to completion by providing predictable results. Thanks to its computer-control system, a consistent, quality blend is ensured every time, shaving weeks off a project schedule while delivering a perfectly flat floor for subsequent trades to build out on within 24 hours. Fast-track environments where self-leveling underlayments are typically used include applications such as residential towers, schools, hospitals and warehouses.
Fast Setting High Performance Mortars and Grouts
Tile and stone format sizes continue to grow in dimension and weight. Project Design Professionals and builders are specifying the installation of these materials in more challenging locations and environments. To utilize the new materials safely and productively, new adhesive advancements have led to the development of products that provide quality, lasting installations and ultimately save time and money with rapid setting formulations and other characteristics. LATICRETE 254 Platinum multipurpose thin set mortar is an example of a product that is suitable for demanding installations; including but not limited to exterior, submerged and demanding commercial applications and is available in regular setting and rapid setting versions.
With new developments in grout, such as improved workability for faster and easier installation, contractors gain increased productivity and time savings on the jobsite. These select grouts, which have been designed for virtually all types of commercial and residential installations, now feature easy-to-mix formulas with creamier consistencies and fast-setting properties that allow foot traffic in as little as three hours, and help ensure easy maintenance over the lifetime of the surface.
To provide longer lasting products, LATICRETE has made advancements to nearly 20 of its cement-based mortars and grouts packaging. While most products on the market must be disposed of after a year, the updated plastic packaging allows distributors and contractors to store these mortars and grouts for up to two years, drastically reducing disposal costs for unused, expired inventory. Additionally, to allow contractors and distributors to eliminate waste and increase cost savings, LATICRETE has launched the industry’s first dry dispersible pigment solution – LATICRETE PERMACOLOR Select. This product has separated the color pigment from the base grout material – and is able to be carried for five years – much longer than traditional grouts, which require disposal after only one year.
One Step Grouting Products
Another time saving innovation are one-step, no mixing type grouting products. These products also help installers to realize time and cost savings on projects. Just pop the lid and start grouting. LATICRETE Stellar Grout is a ready to use, flexible, UV resistant high performance single component grout which offers color uniformity, and stain protection in an easy to use, non-sag formulation. Advances in technology with single component tile installation products are reaching performance levels that were only available in more traditional multi-component products.
As the industry pushes to produce more advanced products to meet construction needs for fast-track projects, developments in technology will continue to produce higher performing adhesive mortars, grouts, self-leveling underlayments and installation system solutions. Trends to look out for include the addition of environmental and safety benefits.