Concrete floors for industrial use must be entirely flat – i.e. they must have no irregularities, either convex or concave. As stated in the UNI 11146:2005 standard: “The degree of flatness of a floor must be defined in the design, taking account of the chosen construction method”. The same standard defines precisely the acceptable flatness tolerances:
|Distances between the control points
* Concave or convex shift from the nominal ground plane, defined by the ruler used for measuring
Stricter tolerance than those set out above are requirement for many automated warehouses and warehouses with high-level racking system where tall fork-lift trucks are moving around, where it is essential to reduce to any slopes to an absolute minimum. A floor that meets the levelness requirements produces substantial cost savings because:
- the goods can be handled safely making full use of the potential of the fork-lift, with no slow-down
- the fork-lifts and trolleys will not be subject to bumps and vibrations, allowing the warranty plans to be respected
- damage to the goods or the racking is avoided.
We know that the levelness (also known as flatness or planarity) of the flooring impacts on operational efficiency both near and between the shelving racks, and so for this reason it is important that the design of the surface takes account of the goods-handling system.
Recodi deals with the design and installation of controlled level industrial flooring for high-traffic warehouses and industrial facilities throughout Italy. We make use of the Laser Screed vibrocompacting machine, but we are also able to spread flat floors manually.
Our production process demands that the flatness is monitored from the casting phase through the use of Laser Screed machine and passing over the surface with special scrapers, followed by trowelling, which is carried out at the most opportune moment, when the concrete has started to harden; in this way, the formation of dips is avoided, and the levelness is not compromised. The next phase is dusting, after which special solutions are deployed to regulate and refine the flatness, using the scraper once again, as well as the power trowel, which is employed to complete the dusting operations.
Subsequent monitoring is conducted once the racks have been mounted within the area in question, with a view to enhancing the levelness of specific zones – generally, transit aisles for fork-lift trucks and areas adjacent to the racks – where it is particularly important to ensure that the surface is perfectly flat.
The aisles are the most delicate part of the flooring: in warehouses, they tend to be very narrow, to allow for the storage of the highest possible quantities of goods, and moreover the special narrow-aisle trucks travelling up and down these aisles lift the loads upwards without bringing them down to ground level – as such, it is easy to understand how an irregularity in the flooring of just a few millimetres could cause the load to shift by several centimetres, compromising stability.
The use of Laser Screed technology allows us to lay substantial beds (up to 2,500 m2 per day), with the consequent reduction in the number of joints and, therefore, of the potential defects of flatness that could arise during the laying procedure.
This approach allows us to obtain exceptional level tolerances, with values higher than the reference values shown in the table above. For storage areas, the tolerances we use are as follows:
|Distances between control points
This is why we are able to deliver solutions of the highest qualitative standards that provide exactly the type of storage and goods-handling surfaces requested by our clients.