Terrazzo FAQ's

What is terrazzo?


Terrazzo is a seamless poured in place composite material composed of a binder, aggregate and divider strips. Typically epoxy resin is used as a binder material. However, some terrazzo systems may utilize a cement binder. Terrazzo aggregates are available in a variety of materials such as crushed natural stone, recycled glass, porcelain, metal, plastic or shell. Terrazzo divider strips are used to layout the terrazzo floor pattern or design. They are also available in a variety of materials such as aluminum, zinc, brass and plastic. Terrazzo is most commonly used as a flooring finish but also can be used for stair treads, countertops, walls or even ceilings. For a more detailed explanation please refer to our blog.




What is precast terrazzo?


Precast terrazzo as the name implies is prefabricated and finished in a factory, then shipped to the project site for installation. As a poured material, terrazzo has virtually unlimited design potential. Precast manufacturing companies build custom millwork forms then fill with the terrazzo mix to create different shapes and designs. Precast will have a longer lead time because all the fabrication takes place at the factory, however, once complete and shipped to the site the installation will go quickly. For more detailed information please refer to our blog.




How much does terrazzo cost?


Terrazzo pricing varies depending on the terrazzo system, design complexity including number of colors and project location. Pricing below is for the Southeastern United States. Please contact us for project specific pricing.




How long does it take to install terrazzo flooring?


Poured in place epoxy terrazzo flooring is a labor intensive trade. Installation duration will vary depending on size of the project, design complexity, contractor manpower, and how the space is released to the installing contractor. Most architectural applications take several weeks to complete. Please contact us for project specific installation durations.




Does epoxy terrazzo contain Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs)


No. Epoxy terrazzo resin will not adversely affect the indoor air quality either during or after the installation. Several manufacturers, such as Terroxy Resin Systems, offer Green Guard Gold certified products, meaning that the products comply with the State of Californi’s Department of Public Health Services Standard Practice for Specification Section 01350 (California Section 01350)




Is terrazzo a sanitary product?


Yes. Epoxy terrazzo is a seamless ground and polished hard surface flooring finish.Its non-pours resinous binder does not support the growth of mold, mildew, bacteria or fungus.For this reason, i is commonly used in hospital or clean environments.




How thick is terrazzo?


Terrazzo thickness will vary based on the system that is specified. Epoxy Terrazzo has a total system thickness of just ⅜”*** Monolithic Cement Terrazzo has a total system thickness of ½” ***Note aggregate size can vary the thickness of the terrazzo system. If you have larger aggregates they system thickness could be ½” - ¾”




What are terrazzo dividers?


Terrazzo divider strips are used to create the floor pattern or design of the terrazzo flooring, similar to a coloring book. Divider strips are available in aluminium, zinc, brass and plastic. They can be bent or cut into an infinite amount of different designs. They are often an “L” shape and will match the thickness of the terrazzo you are specifying. Terrazzo dividers are also available in different gauges. For more detailed information on terrazzo divider strips please refer to our blog.




How is terrazzo installed?


Traditional terrazzo is a poured in place terrazzo application. Raw materials such as resin or cement along with aggregates are then mixed on site. Once mixed the terrazzo is hand troweled to the substrate and allowed to cure. Once it has cured, the installer will grind and polish to a seamless finish. Poured in place terrazzo has very short lead times as the majority of raw materials are readily available but with the labor that is performed on site the installation has a longer duration. Click here for a terrazzo installation video and for more detailed information refer to our blog.




How is terrazzo finished?


Terrazzo is a ground and polished seamless flooring finish. The standard terrazzo installation consists of a rough (40 grit) , medium (80 grit) and fine (120 grit or higher) polish. Then 2 coats of a topical sealer are applied. Alternatively, a high polish finish may be utilized taking the floor up through additional polishing stages, 200, 400, 800 or higher. This is more costly in the initial installation but lowers maintenance costs during building operation.




Does terrazzo contain recycled content?


Yes. Epoxy terrazzo can contain up to 70% post consumer recycled materials.




Is terrazzo sustainable or LEED Friendly?


Yes. Epoxy terrazzo can contribute to LEED. It can contain up to 70% post consumer recycled materials. Terrazzo does not contain VOCs and manufacturers such as, Terroxy Resin Systems, offer Greenguard Gold Certified products as well as offer Health Product Declarations HPDs and Environmental Product Declarations EPDs.




What colors of terrazzo are available?


Its virtually unlimited. You can customize every aspect of your terrazzo color. The background or resin color can be matched to any paint manufacturers colors. There are hundreds of different types and colors of terrazzo aggregates available which can be mixed and matched at different rations. You can also vary the size of the terrazzo aggregates. Please contact us for customized samples or start browsing terrazzo samples online here.




How can I find a good terrazzo installer?


Generally we recommend using a terrazzo contractor that is part of the National Terrazzo & Mosaic Association. The NTMA established quality assurance standards that govern the terrazzo industry. Your installing terrazzo contractor should be a contractor member of the NTMA in good standing. Looking for terrazzo installers in your area, please contact us we’re happy to connect you with quality installers.




How does terrazzo transition to other materials?


Terrazzo easily transitions to other materials using a divider strip to terminate the terrazzo and transition to the adjacent material. What is the adjacent flooring is at a higher elevation than the terrazzo. The terrazzo can be build up using a fill material and transitioned over a few feet. Terrazzo can also be transitioned to a material at a lower elevation. We simply remove the existing flooring approx 2-3 feet back from the transition area. Then infill the area while creating a slight slope down to ⅜” below the original transition height. This allows the terrazzo contractor to install a flush transition




What are the benefits of terrazzo?


Terrazzo is the preferred flooring finish of many designers for good reason. It's the most durable flooring finish available so it's ideal for high traffic applications. Terrazzo is a seamless hard surface so its very sanitary and easy to maintain. Further, its idea for wheeled traffic and no noise is created terrazzo does not have grout joints. As a poured material with an infinite color options, terrazzo offers virtually unlimited design potential. Terrazzo can be cast into prefabricated items such as stair treads, base, countertops or wall cladding. Terrazzo is a sustainable material and can contribute to LEED. Terrazzo does not affect indoor air quality after installation.




Are terrazzo floors slippery?


Any polished flooring can be slippery, particularly when wet. However, if treated appropriately terrazzo can offer a NFSI certified high-traction requirement. Different sealers or finishes can be applied to vary the coefficient of friction. If needed, there are also anti-slip abrasive additives that can be broadcast into the sealer for added traction. Please contact us for more information.




Can terrazzo be used on stairs?


Yes. Typically terrazzo stairs are fabricated with precast terrazzo. Most stairs have repeating treads that are more efficiently produced in a factory. Precast terrazzo stairs will also have a better finish and tolerances than what can be accomplished in the field with poured in place terrazzo. Now there are some exceptions to the rule. For example, if the project you’re designing also has terrazzo flooring and there long runs of stairs or complex curves, a poured in place terrazzo stair could be a great option. For more information please refer to our blog or contact us.




How often do I need a terrazzo joint?


Terrazzo joints are a complicated topic and should be addressed on a project by project basis. As a general rule of thumb maximum spans of terrazzo should not exceed 30 feet. Please contact us for more information.





Do you have questions?

Contact us for more information.