The replacement of the floor covering was supposed to be handled in a manner that did not interfere with the operations nor disturb the residents. In addition, a very narrow window of only two days with fixed hours from 8 to 12 o'clock and from 14 to 17 o'clock was available for the construction measure.
Practical test required before deciding on investment
"Safety and age-appropriate design of the ambience have top priority with construction measures at our care facilities" says Mr. Wrba from the facilities management of Caritas. Unstableness and tripping hazards must be kept to a minimum because the visual faculties of older persons are often restricted. In addition, indoor ambience and health are important. Quietness is an essential comfort criterion; structure-borne sound and airborne noise must therefore be reduced as much as possible. The materials used must not jeopardize the well-being of the residents either. Dust, noise, odours and other emissions must be reduced to a minimum. To ensure these requirements in the optimal interaction of floor covering, installation materials and craft services Caritas performed a practical test prior to the principle investment decision. A 17 m partial section was supposed to be renovated as an example, 50 m² of the existing floor covering should be replaced during ongoing operation and the result critically observed over a six month period. The overall trade job planning was contracted to an experienced crafts enterprise, the local interior design company Abbold.
Quick renovation with no downtime
After a comprehensive examination of the substrate condition the floor specialists opted for an installation with Sigan 1 combined with other time-saving installation materials from the UZIN product range. "The patented Sigan adhesive system provides us with a solution that very much meets the requirements of users and operators of care and senior citizens facilities," explained Ernst Wohlleb, application consultant manager at UZIN. The switchTec adhesive technology allows for renovation of floor coverings free from dirt, odours, dust and noise where the new floor covering is simply applied to the existing, firmly adhering covering or directly onto the prepared substrate.
In the given narrow time frame the old floor covering was first removed, the adhesive ridges were sanded off, chips and recesses of the screed repaired and sound bridges to the wall removed as well as screed joints exposed. After the lunch break the application of the pasty 2-component primer UZIN PE 630 followed already and was dry after 40 minutes. Next, the flooring installer applied the UZIN NC 172 Bi Turbo levelling compound, which is extremely quickly ready for installation. The second day began with sanding the connections to the expansion joints and door thresholds to design them barrier-free from the new 3.3 mm thick floor covering to the old 2 mm covering. The Planus system primer was subsequently applied. This product also requires only a short setting time reducing the periods where foot traffic on the area was restricted to a minimum. Sigan 1 could now be installed successively. Because the adhesive system is covered by a protective paper all areas could be passed without exception. The paper was now pulled off sheet by sheet and the floor covering installed. The floor covering was ready to support loads and foot traffic immediately after installation. Another benefit: In case of a future change of use or another renovation, the floor covering bonded with Sigan can be quickly removed without residues even years later. Having received the environmental seals "Blue Angel" and Emicode EC 1 Plus the system also meets all requirements for healthy indoor living.
Conclusion of test installation to be continued
After completion of the test phase of six months where the newly installed floor covering was subjected to tough everyday use scrutiny, the administration of the care home and the facility management heads arrived at a very positive assessment of this flexible and future-proof renovation method with the Sigan adhesive system. All requirements on the implementation and the materials used were fully met so that this pilot project now serves as an example for other renovation projects of Caritas Augsburg.