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Floor finishes is a vital component in any building structure and lots of defects happen to the floor finishes though many of them could be traceable to the sub floor defect. The objective of the study is to clearly identify the various types of floor finishing prevalent in Enugu Metropolis, their strength and weakness, also to study the cause of failure in floor finish and how to correct them. Finally the research will evaluate the maintenance culture of occupants regarding their floor finishing within the metropolis. The study commences with the review of some past relevant

literature with the intention of making use of the important facts.

Data were collected using the questionnaires and analysis of the collected data also made line with the hypothesis and are processed by the use of tables, focus was on the generation summary statistics such as percentages. The result of the study showed that without a proper maintenance culture on floor finishes, deterioration and failure in floor finish will be a reoccurring decimal in our building structure. The study revealed that most of the defects in floor finishes emanated from defects in structural floors or the improper laying of beds or joint on which applied floor finishes are laid and as a result of this, where defects occur relaying of the finishes is the only answer to the problems but care must be taken to avoid dis-stabilizing the stability of the structural floor and maintain even

level between newly laid finishes and old ones. The following recommendations are made:

1.            Before any material is used as floor finishes, it should be tested and analyzed in order to determine and establish the compressive strength and duration.

2.            Emphasis should be laid on suitable materials /finishes than cheep materials/finishes, so as to reduce failure in finishes.

3.            Knowledge of finishes serviceability duration should be known.

4.            A good maintenance culture should be maintained.

As this will go along way to enhance the life span of our various floor finishes.


Floor finishes are the final substance applied on the surface of floor before the floor is put to use. Most floor systems of a building are not exposed to the climatic element and their weathering effects, since a floor system must support traffic however durability, resistance to wear and easy of maintain are critical factors in the selection of a floor system and its finish. The desired finishes and their visual properties (materials, color, texture and pattern) help to determine the choice of floor system which can mostly support these finishes

The choice of and preparation of specification for flooring systems to protect substrates from chemical attach or provide hygienic finishes is an exercise all too often couched in financial considerations.

Floor finishes except in a few special constructions do not contribute to the strength of floor; they are therefore used for one or more of the following reasons.

i.            To provide an attractive appearance.

ii.           To increase the comfort and safety to the user.

iii.          To hide certain services like cable/pipes in the floor. iv. Protect the structural floor from wear tear or corrosion. Each of this primary function that is considered to be the most important will depend on the proposed use.

Many materials that are used as finishes on floors, each one have properties suited to a particular usage, durability and ease of cleaning are essential in all. Case of specific services requirement may call for special properties such as resistance to hard wear, comfort to users and attractive appearance. At home good appearance and comfort will be more important.

Any given floor finish must provide the desired balance of properties and must be sufficiently durable. It will be expected to last for a period commensurate with its initial cost, the cost of replacement and any cost arising from disorganization associated with its replacement and this implies that from all ramification of its need, a good value is required.

A lot of factors affects the life of a floor finish, most important is the ever-present abrasive action of traffic, the action of liquid in producing dimensional changes, erosion and corrosion, the impact of falling object and the dent caused by heavy loads. There is therefore a series of secondary requirement that the finish must fulfill, which will depend on the condition of services though they must be considered in relation to those four mentioned above.

When selecting floor finish many factors deserve consideration but not all the factors are of equal importance, furthermore, requirement vary in different parts of the building, for instance, resistance to oil, grease, moisture is relevant in a kitchen but not on a bedroom, and appearance could be important in a lounge but is of little consequence in a store.

The essential properties to be considered are:

a)          Durability: The material must have a reasonable life to avoid premature replacement with resultant textured, cost and inconvenience.

b)          Resistance to wear: This includes resistance to indentation where the floor has to withstand heavy furniture, fittings or equipment and resistance to abrasion in building subject to heavy pedestrian traffic and moveable equipment.

c)           Economy: Reasonable initial and maintenance cost, having regards to the class of building and the particular building.

d)          Resistance to oil, grease, and chemicals: This is particularly important in domestic kitchen, laboratory and some factory.

e)          Resistance to moisture: This is important in domestic bathrooms, entrance passage and halls and in some industrial buildings.

f)            Ease of cleaning: This is of increasing important in many classes of building as the labour intensive cleaning cost continue to rise in a disproportionate rate.

g)          Warmth: Some finishes are much warmer than other and this may be an important consideration.

h)          Non – Slip qualities: These are particularly important in bathrooms and kitchen where floors may become damp.

i)            Sound absorption: Libraries need floor finishes with high degree of sound absorption.

j)            Appearance: This is an important consideration in many rooms of domestic building, although the current tendency to fully carpet rooms may not justify the provision of more expansive but attractive floor finishes such as wood blocks and strip flooring.

k)           Resilience: Some flexibility or “given” is often desirable.

For industrial installations, despite the importance of floor specifications for floor finishes generally reflect short-term budget rather than long term stability, inviting early failure. Financial considerations for floor finishes should be confined to comparing bids for the ideal specifications complied with the end use in mind. There are many specific considerations to be taken into account when deriving a suitable specification for a given situation, not least the following:

1.           The location of the structure to be protected, its method of construction and condition if it is an existing substrate.

2.           The composition, concentration and temperatures of all fluids or solids which may be in contact with floor surface as a result of the inherent processes, if these vary from area to area it should be clearly stated and designated area clearly marked to allow selection of materials appropriate to each area.

3.           Loading characteristics of the substrate and their ability to withstand additional superimposed loads from toppings, tiles, brick or composite surfacing.

4.           Details of pedestrian and wheeled traffic, including wheel loadings and the nature of wheel contact surface.

5.           Detail of isolated activities such as drum handling and storage and the loading involved, and the areas to which they apply.

6.           The type of floor drainage contemplated i.e. outlets or drainage channels.

7.           The nature, concentration and temperature of all cleaning agents which will be used on the floor including any materials used for cleaning equipment and pipe work since these are usually discharged on the floor or preferable into channels.

Comprehensive information from the end user in these respect will give the specifier the maximum information with which to derive an appropriate specification for a durable finish.


Finishes generally do not contribute to the strength of the floors but it adds beauty or co lour to the floor. There is wide variety of material for floor finishes and each should be evaluated within the context of Enugu Metropolis in relation to the above mentioned requirement, so that it can be suitable for any particular type of usage.

Enugu is the capital city of Enugu State, Nigeria. It has a population of 668,862 (2007 estimate). The people of Enugu belong largely to the Igbo ethnic group, which is one of the three largest ethnic groups in Nigeria. Enugu was originally the capital of the Eastern Region from Nigeria’s independence in 1960. On May 27, 1967 Enugu was made the capital of East Central State, while on May 30, 1967, it was declared the first capital of the short-lived nation of the Republic of Biafra. Enugu became a major center for the mining of the coal discovered by Albert Ernest Kitson in the Udi plateau. The Nigerian coal corporation has been based in Enugu since its creation in 1950.

In this study, the research will evaluate the floor finishes in building as prevalent within the Enugu Metropolis (Residential, Industrial and Office buildings). The research will also study the cause of failure in finishes and means of handling the causes so as to improve on the performance of different floor finishes.

The research will identify maintenance medium of floors in order for the serviceability strength of these finish to be maximized.


The aim of this study is to ascertain the durability of some floor finishing in building projects within Enugu Metropolis.


1.             The various types of floor finishing prevalent in Enugu Metropolis, their strength and weakness.

2.             To study the cause of failure in floor finish and how to correct them. 

3.             To evaluate the maintenance culture of occupants regarding their floor finishing within the metropolis.


The decision to investigate the durability of some floor finishes in building projects (A case study of floor finishing within Enugu metropolis) stemmed from the fact that finishes are very critical aspect of any building structure for it to be habitable, and there are greater tendency to experience failure floor finishines have a wide range of materials which will be evaluated in relation to serviceability requirement.

With the afore stated in mind, the main problem here therefore is what is the cause of failure in floor finish and how to correct them.


1.         What are the factors that affect the choice of a particular floor finish.

2.         What are the common types of floor finish prevalent within Enugu                    


3.         How frequent should  maintenance work  be carried out in the               various floor finish prevalent in the metropolis.

4.         Can the failure in floor finishes be caused by functional failure in the structure.

5.         Can the cost of Maintaining floor finishes affects the maintenance   culture of such floor finishes.

6.         Are there relationship between failure in floor finishes and maintenance culture


The following research hypothesis will enable the researcher make a detailed study on the subject.

1a. there is no relationship between failure in floor finishing and maintenance culture.

1b. there is relationship between failure in floor finishing and the maintenance culture.


The work will be limited to the evaluation of finishes in building with emphasis on floor finishing as prevalent within Enugu Metropolis covering Residential, office and Industrial area within the metropolis.


1.           FINISHING: These are the final substance applied on the        surface of floor, wall or ceiling before the compartment is put to use.

2.           FLOOR:  This is the surface of a room on which one stands or walks.

3.           FAILURE:  This is the state of being inadequate or not functioning as expected.

4.           MAINTENANCE: The act of keeping something in good condition by checking or repairing it regularly.

5.           ACID   Substance that contains hydrogen, which may react with bases to form salt but burns off wood or other materials the pour on.

6.           ALKALIS:  A corrosive substance like soda ammonia or potash that eats off materials but react with acide to form salt.

7.           APPLIED TOPPING: A type of finishing with cement aggregate carried out after concrete surface of floor sets.

8.           GRESE:  A thick semi-solid substance used as lubricant, it can be of animal fat.

9.           INTEGRATED FINISH: Finishing laid within three hours; the base was cast to minimize differential shrinkage base and finish.

10.       OIL:   Liquid which does not mix with water obtained from animal and plant.

11.       OPERATION:     An ongoing and repetitive endeavor undertaken to create a unique product or services.

12.       RESILIENT: Tendency for materials to recover their original shape when hard materials fall on them or heavy traffic passes them.

13.       SETTLEMENT: The tendency of a building to take up another level after it has been completed such that all has been completed such that all loads on it adjust its position on the bearing ground.

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