Glue-Free ESD Floors

[12 min read]

THE GIST: Glue-Free ESD Floors

Most ESD floors are installed with a conductive adhesive that forms a conductive ground plane under the floor. But in areas requiring access to underfloor wiring or utilities or chemical-free installation, in 24/7 spaces that cannot be shut down, or in spaces that may be repurposed or the flooring redeployed, a glue-free installation may be a better option.

  • Most ESD floors are installed using conductive adhesive, but in some cases a glue-free installation may be a better option.
  • Choices include:
    • Raised access panels with PosiTile carpet tile
      • PosiTile lays flat using buttons ultrasonically welded to the underside of ShadowFX tiles, for a precise one-to-one match
    • Conductive underlayments
      • A glue-free floating floor can be installed over StaticWorx GroundBridge underlayment
        • GroundBridge acts as the electrical unifier between tiles.
      • Self-adhering floors
        • Flooring materials like StaticWorx Eclipse GF rubber come with a pre-applied, moisture-resistant backing
        • Appropriate for almost any environment, EclipseGF is specifically targeted toward clean rooms, electronics manufacturing, call centers and 24/7 spaces, where shutdowns cannot be tolerated.
      • Interlocking flooring materials
        • Can be installed directly over sufloor with no moisture mitigation
        • Easy to install – just hammer interlocking pieces into place
      • Conductivity and performance parameters
        • Should be evaluated based on the same parameters as any ESD floor
        • Should follow applicable, industry-based ESD flooring standards

“Many companies lease space and the capital expense associated with a permanently-attached ESD floor may feel like a bad investment. A glue-free solution offers the owner the ability to take the floor with them when the lease expires or the space becomes repurposed.”

Most ESD floors are installed using conductive adhesive to secure the flooring material to the concrete subfloor and provide a conductive ground plane to carry static charges to ground.

For some applications, however, adhesive is not the optimal solution:

  • In areas requiring movement of tiles to access under-floor wiring or utilities.

  • In applications, such as operational call centers, where personnel may be averse to working while chemicals are applied in their presence;
    • Most adhesives give off an odor during drying.

  • In applications where a shutdown cannot be tolerated;
    • Control Tower

      Mission-critical spaces such as flight towers must be operational 24/7 and cannot tolerate shutdowns.

      Floor tiles cannot cover an adhesive until it begins to cure and the space cannot be occupied until the adhesive has fully dried—generally, this requires a one- to two-day shutdown. This can be problematic in 24/7 mission-critical spaces—9-1-1 dispatch areas and FAA flight-control towers, for instance—where the space must be continuously operational.

  • In environments where the floor is likely to be redeployed or repurposed;
    • Many companies lease space and the capital expense associated with a permanently-attached ESD floor may feel like a bad investment. A glue-free solution offers the owner the ability to take the floor with them when the lease expires or the space becomes repurposed.

Most ESD floors are installed using conductive adhesive to secure the flooring material to the concrete subfloor and provide a conductive ground plane to carry static charges to ground.

For some applications, however, adhesive is not the optimal solution:

  • In areas requiring movement of tiles to access under-floor wiring or utilities.

  • In applications, such as operational call centers, where personnel may be averse to working while chemicals are applied in their presence;
    • Most adhesives give off an odor during drying.
  • In applications where a shutdown cannot be tolerated;
    • Control Tower

      Mission-critical spaces such as flight towers must be operational 24/7 and cannot tolerate shutdowns.

      Floor tiles cannot cover an adhesive until it begins to cure and the space cannot be occupied until the adhesive has fully dried—generally, this requires a one- to two-day shutdown. This can be problematic in 24/7 mission-critical spaces—9-1-1 dispatch areas and FAA flight-control towers, for instance—where the space must be continuously operational.
  • In environments where the floor is likely to be redeployed or repurposed;
    • Many companies lease space and the capital expense associated with a permanently-attached ESD floor may feel like a bad investment. A glue-free solution offers the owner the ability to take the floor with them when the lease expires or the space becomes repurposed.

Solutions

Raised-Access Floor Panels and PosiTile Carpet Tile

Access Flooring Appalachian Trail Carpet

Staticworx ESD Carpet tile, Appalachian Trail, over raised-access floor panels

Raised-access floor panels are typically used in areas requiring under-floor utilities or wiring. If the panels are bare metal, and the ESD tile covering the panel is deemed to be curl-free without the use of any glue, there is no need for conductive adhesive. Most ESD flooring materials would be grounded upon contact with the bare metal panels. Products such as ShadowFX PosiTile can be installed directly over bare access panels, without the use of any adhesive.
Access Flooring Appalachian Trail Carpet

Staticworx ESD Carpet tile, Appalachian Trail, over raised-access floor panels

Raised-access floor panels are typically used in areas requiring under-floor utilities or wiring. If the panels are bare metal, and the ESD tile covering the panel is deemed to be curl-free without the use of any glue, there is no need for conductive adhesive. Most ESD flooring materials would be grounded upon contact with the bare metal panels. Products such as ShadowFX PosiTile can be installed directly over bare access panels, without the use of any adhesive.

PosiTile ESD Carpet Tile

Positile

Button on underside of Shadow FX PosiTile ESD Carpet

With its surface-hugging backing, ShadowFX PosiTile lays flat without any dots or strips of glue. Buttons are welded ultrasonically to the underside of ShadowFX tiles, creating a precise one-to-one match between the tile and the floor panel, allowing for quick, easy swapping of carpet tile, and eliminating need for shutdowns and work interruption. Meets all key industry safety guidelines, including Motorola R56, ANSI/ESD S20.20, ATIS 0600321 and FAA 019f.

Positile

Button on underside of Shadow FX PosiTile ESD Carpet

With its surface-hugging backing, ShadowFX PosiTile lays flat without any dots or strips of glue. Buttons are welded ultrasonically to the underside of ShadowFX tiles, creating a precise one-to-one match between the tile and the floor panel, allowing for quick, easy swapping of carpet tile, and eliminating need for shutdowns and work interruption. Meets all key industry safety guidelines, including Motorola R56, ANSI/ESD S20.20, ATIS 0600321 and FAA 019f.

Conductive Underlayments

GroundBridge Conductive Underlayment

GroundBridgeTM Conductive Underlayment

ShadowFX carpet with Groundbridge Underlayment

ShadowFX carpet with GroundbridgeTM underlayment and Versashield moisture barrier.

A glue-free, floating floor can also be installed over a proprietary conductive underlayment such as StaticWorx GroundBridge™. The GroundBridge underlayment, like bare metal access panels, acts as the electrical unifier between tiles. Like bare metal access flooring panels, GroundBridge grounds the ESD flooring installed above it.

GlueFree Carpet Install with TacTile
Installing carpet tiles with self-adhering TacTiles®.

A lightweight material composed of conductive cellulose, this conductive, glue-free grounding system can be installed over any existing subfloor. Installation is clean, easy, and fast, with no VOCs. A floating floor can be created with carpet tiles by simply rolling GroundBridge strips over the existing floor, then joining the corners of StaticWorx ESD carpet tiles, using dimensionally-strong, self-adhering TacTiles®.

Selecting a Static-control Floor
Get the essential tools for specifying and selecting an ESD floor. FREE in our short, but comprehensive visual e-guide.
✓ Specification checklist;
✓ visual selector guide;
✓ walking body voltage/low static generation;
✓ resistance requirements and testing;
✓ ESD flooring comparison;
✓ industry standards & test methods;
✓ key ESD terms
Start your ESD journey today!

Interlocking or Self-Adhering Flooring Materials

Neither interlocking floors nor self-adhering ESD flooring materials require adhesive and both can be installed directly over most existing subfloors with no need for moisture mitigation.

GroundLock Extreme interlocking floors are easily installed by simply placing the tiles on the existing floor and hammering the interlocking edges into place. This odorless, easy-to-install flooring system meets all the same static-control parameters of a full-spread, conductive adhesive installation without the commitment of a permanent installation, making it an ideal solution for leased spaces, concrete slabs with vapor issues, and even for occupied spaces, such as labs that cannot be shutdown. If an area becomes repurposed, it’s no big deal: Simply lift and move the interlocking tiles.

Before Groundlock Extreme

Before GroundLock Extreme

After Groundlock Extreme

After GroundLock Extreme

Self-adhering floors

Cleanroom

Staticworx GF Rubber Installed in a Cleanroom

Self-adhering floors come with a pre-applied adhesive on the underside of the material.

EclipseGF, a moisture-resistant self-adhering rubber sheet floor, comes with a pre-applied, moisture-resistant adhesive backing. The self-adhesive backing adheres to the subfloor as it’s laid, allowing for immediate traffic, without the one- to two-day delay associated with adhesives. Appropriate for almost any environment, EclipseGF is specifically targeted toward clean rooms, electronics manufacturing, call centers and 24/7 spaces, where shutdowns cannot be tolerated.

Cleanroom

Staticworx GF Rubber Installed in a Cleanroom

Self-adhering floors come with a pre-applied adhesive on the underside of the material.

EclipseGF, a moisture-resistant self-adhering rubber sheet floor, comes with a pre-applied, moisture-resistant adhesive backing. The self-adhesive backing adheres to the subfloor as it’s laid, allowing for immediate traffic, without the one- to two-day delay associated with adhesives. Appropriate for almost any environment, EclipseGF is specifically targeted toward clean rooms, electronics manufacturing, call centers and 24/7 spaces, where shutdowns cannot be tolerated.

EclipseGF
No problems with moisture. No pH or RH testing. No wait for drying times. No shutdowns or traffic delays.

Conductivity and Performance Parameters

Whether installing an ESD floor with conductive adhesive on concrete, over bare metal access panels, or with a conductive underlayment, the same rules apply:
  • ESD SignThe material under the surface should measure more conductive (in other words, have less electrical resistance) than the surface of the floor.
    • If the floor surface is more conductive than the underlayment, unintended electricity (stray voltages) could flow across the surface, as opposed to through of thickness of the floor, to the underlying ground plane. This scenario could pose a safety threat to people working near energized equipment.
  • The glue-free ESD flooring surface, whether interlocking or self-adhering, should meet all national and international standards for electrical performance and safety, including ANSI/ESD S20.20, FAA 019f, Motorola R56, and ATIS 0600321.
  • ESD SignThe material under the surface should measure more conductive (in other words, have less electrical resistance) than the surface of the floor.
    • If the floor surface is more conductive than the underlayment, unintended electricity (stray voltages) could flow across the surface, as opposed to through of thickness of the floor, to the underlying ground plane. This scenario could pose a safety threat to people working near energized equipment.
  • The glue-free ESD flooring surface, whether interlocking or self-adhering, should meet all national and international standards for electrical performance and safety, including ANSI/ESD S20.20, FAA 019f, Motorola R56, and ATIS 0600321.
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StaticWorx high-performance static-control floors protect electronic components, explosives, and high-speed computers from damage caused by static electricity. ESD flooring is part of a system. Choices should always be based on objective, researched evidence. When you partner with us, we look at all possible items that may need to integrate with the floor, and, focusing on your goals and objectives, help you find the right floor for your application.

Play Video

StaticWorx high-performance static-control floors protect electronic components, explosives, and high-speed computers from damage caused by static electricity. ESD flooring is part of a system. Choices should always be based on objective, researched evidence. When you partner with us, we look at all possible items that may need to integrate with the floor, and, focusing on your goals and objectives, help you find the right floor for your application.

Vermont Collection/ESD Planx

Staticworx Vermont Collection

“I’m so glad we were able to find an attractive solution that didn’t leave us with some run-of-the-mill ugly disaster.”

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The FAA has updated its standard for facilities and electronic equipment. StaticWorx meets all requirements for ESD flooring.

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Vermont Collection/ESD Planx

Staticworx Vermont Collection

“I’m so glad we were able to find an attractive solution that didn’t leave us with some run-of-the-mill ugly disaster.”

Share This

Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on facebook
Share on email
Share on whatsapp

Get in Touch

East Coast: 617-923-2000
Email: [email protected]

We accept these major credit cards.

The FAA has updated its standard for facilities and electronic equipment. StaticWorx meets all requirements for ESD flooring.

Flooring Products

subscribe to newsletter

Sign up for our newsletter and occasional updates.

Flooring Products

We accept these major credit cards.

The FAA has updated its standard for facilities and electronic equipment. StaticWorx meets all requirements for ESD flooring.

Share This

Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on facebook
Share on email
Share on whatsapp

Get in Touch

East Coast: 617-923-2000
Email: [email protected]

“I’m so glad we were able to find an attractive solution that didn’t leave us with some run-of-the-mill ugly disaster.”

subscribe to newsletter

Sign up for our newsletter and occasional updates.

Learning Center

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