How Long Do Different Types of Screed Take To Dry?


How Long Do Different Types Of Screed Take To Dry?

When it comes to resin flooring installations, a level screed is essential for building up the substrate floor height or for creating falls to drains, which allows for correct drainage.

There are several different types of “fast cure screed” on the market.

Understanding the different screeds and their properties is crucial for assessing time vs. money. A fast cure system means your business can get back to running smoothly in no time, keeping you free from time pressure and costly delays.

But, choosing the wrong type of screed can have consequences for the long term durability of the screed itself and therefore the resin coating’s performance on top of it.


The Differents types of Screeds

While there are many different screeds available for many suppliers, there are 3 main types (for the use of levelling and screed to falls).

Cementitious Screeds are frequently made from pre-blended mortar containing cement or anhydrous binders. These rely on the water evaporating to achieve the dry and cure. These can be overlaid by any type of floor and typically take longer to cure, the thicker the screed (due to increased water volume).

Polymer Screeds are still cement-based, but have an additional polymer to replace or be combined with the water. These rely on the chemical cure of the polymer to dry and cure. Examples of polymer are Laytex or Acrylic. They can be overlaid by certain compatible systems only (for example Laytex can react with resin floors and is therefore mostly used by Vinyl or tiled finishes).

Resin Screeds are not cementitious at all, are completely non-pourous and often very fast curing (some as quick as 2 hours). They are usually stronger than cement-based and have more flexibility, meaning less cracking over large areas. They do however cost more than polymer or cementitious types.


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Drying Time Of Screeds

Any screed floor must be properly cured before the addition of any flooring.

Traditional cementitious screed floors can take around 7 days per centimetre of thickness in optimal conditions. This could incur drying times of over a month; which can become costly if you’re having to shut down your business or delay program times.

With the Polymer screeds, it is the chemical cure of the polymer, rather than the thickness, which determines the cure time. So, this can be better for thicker screeds, for example where you have falls to drains. Depending on the polymer, this is usually somewhere between 3 and 5 days.

Resin screeds (or composite screeds) can have cure times of just 2 hours! This means the finished floor material can be laid almost immediately.


Which One Should Be Selected?

In our opinion, it comes down to the cost of shutdown or program delay time vs. the cost of the screed.

Cementitious screeds are usually the lowest purchase cost but take longer to dry.

Resin Screeds are the fastest to cure but cost the most.

Polymer screeds are somewhere in the middle.

Acrylicon is able to provide all three options and would be happy to discuss the benefits of each one and help you specify the right solution for your needs.

Simply call 01480 276620

Or email for more information.

ESSENTIAL GUIDE TO industrial resin floor repairs


  • Author: Adam Clements
  • Date: 12th Nov 2021