The distribution center at the Los Angeles International Airport is one of the busiest in the world. Tens of thousands of products move through the facility on fork trucks, pallet jacks, and food carts every day.

In addition to withstanding constant, heavy-duty traffic, the floor coating had two other jobs to do. It had keep moisture from coming up through the concrete, and it had to adhere to California’s strict low-VOC regulations.


Southern California has strict regulations about the use of volatile organic compounds (VOCs). VOCs are emitted into the air as gases from certain solids and liquids. They can cause health problems, such as headaches, nausea, and respiratory problems.

The materials used in the LAX distribution center’s floor coating system were chosen to be low- or zero-VOCs, which means they emit very little or no VOCs into the air.

Moisture Mitigation

Southern California is generally a dry environment, but still has a high water table in some areas. The moisture in the ground is trying to get into the air. This creates moisture vapor pressure under the concrete slab.

The floor coating system would need to mitigate that moisture to prevent it from damaging the floor.

Wear and Tear

The facility is very large and handles a high volume of food and supplies for LAX. That means a lot of fork trucks, pallet jacks, and other traffic that can wear down the floor. So the coating needed to be able to withstand that kind of punishment.

The Coating System

CFI specified a floor system that met all of these needs. It was comprised of WearCOAT 720 Urethane Cement with a sand broadcast for the base coat, WearCOAT 440 Epoxy for the mid-coat, and WearCOAT 2035 Polyaspartic for the top-coat.

WearCOAT 720 Urethane Cement does most of the heavy lifting for the coating system. It is a high-performance, three-component self-leveling urethane cement that is designed for heavy-duty applications.

The urethane cement was applied approximately to a 1/8 inch thickness to lock in the moisture and provide wear protection. Sand was applied before it cured to provide added wear and impact protection, as well as anti-slip properties.

WearCOAT 440 was added as a mid-coat. It is a zero-VOC, no-odor epoxy coating that grouted the sand layer to make it less course.

WearCOAT 2035 was added as a top-coat. It is a high-solids, two-component polyaspartic coating that provides additional wear and UV resistance.

The new floor coating system is expected to provide many years of reliable service to the distribution center. It is designed to meet the unique needs of the facility and the location, and it is expected to provide a safe and healthy work environment for employees.

Every facility is different, and there is no one-size-fits-all floor coating system. Every floor must have its age, history, use-case, and aesthetic or performance requirements taken into account when choosing a floor coating system.

CFI can help you select the ideal floor coating system for their application. If you need help with your next project, tell us about it. Our Customer Support team will get back to you to help you specify the right system.