A materials guide for the veterinary facility
Materials guide for veterinarians
BDA Architecture/Wayne Usiak & Associates
9016 Washington St. N.E., Albuquerque, NM 871125
A materials guide for the veterinary facility
Interior finishes are among the most difficult and controversial areas of animal hospital design and construction. The following list of materials, some guidelines and/or limitations for their use, and a partial list of manufacturers are provided for your use. While these materials are proven performers, success in your design and construction projects will depend on several factors. Local representation of the manufacturers; trained, available craftsmen; and competent local dealers are all essential to success. Proper material selection, appropriate substrate and preparation, and correct installation practices and accessories must also be considered. Manufacturers listed are not necessarily the only acceptable proprietors and they are not receiving my personal endorsement, but they have been used successfully on previous projects. You are welcome to contact me at any time for additional information or opinions on these or other materials and suppliers. Wayne Usiak
The least expensive and easiest to apply wall finish is paint. Paint finishes range from acrylic latex and enamel to epoxy. Paints have the added advantage of being easily repaired or changed in color. Their major disadvantage is durability. Most are easily scratched, particularly when applied over gypsum board, the most common wall substrate. In paint application, substrate preparation is always a key issue, as wall flaws usually telegraph through, and successful bonding relies on correct preparation.
Vinyl wall coverings should be classified as Type II to be suitable for veterinary facilities. These wall coverings are scrubbable; durable; relatively scratch resistant; and come in a wide range of colors, textures, and designs.
Sheet plastics (acrovyn, kydex) are up to 1/8" thick solid sheets typically sold in 4-foot-wide sheets that are 8, 10, or 12 feet long. They are glued to the wall and provide excellent scratch and impact resistance. Up to 50 colors (all solid) are available.
Plastic laminates can be applied directly to the wall or to wood sheets and then to the wall. They are offered in numerous decorative options and are highly durable.
Ceramic tile can be purchased with glazed, matte, or porcelain finishes. It is very durable, moisture resistant, and design flexible. Tiles are available in 1 x 1, 2 x 2, 3 x 3, 4 x 4, 6 x 6, 8 x 8, and 1-foot squares.
Fiber reinforced plastic (FRP) board is available in 4-foot sheets that are 8, 10, or 12 feet long. It is roughly 1/16" thick and is usually a pebble texture surface. Colors are typically white, beige, and gray; a full line of corner and edge trims are also available. It is often used in commercial kitchens because of its durable, readily cleanable, hosable surface finish.
|Paint on concrete block||prime coat||PPG|
|Pratte + Lambert|
|Paint on gypsum board||same as above|
|acrylic latex semi-gloss|
|one part ester epoxy|
|two part catalyzed epoxy|
|Vinyl wall coverings||Type II||Vicrtex Koroseal|
|Sheet plastics||.028-.125 thick, 4' x 10' sheets or 4' rolls||Acrovyn|
|Ceramic tile||glazed, 2 x 2, 4 x 4||American Olean|
|6 x 6, 8 x 8||Dal|
|FRP||4' x 8', 10', 12' sheets||Kemlite |
Floors are probably the most critical finish of a veterinary facility. They are subject to constant abuse and maintenance. When selecting flooring, the following factors must be taken into consideration: wearing surface durability, joints (in seams and at wall intersections), slip resistance, urine resistance, stain resistance, scratch resistance, comfort underfoot, repairability, life cycle, color selection, substrate requirements, and cleanability. The order in which you rate these qualities is your decision. Virtually any floor material can be used in the veterinary hospital, and if installed and maintained correctly will suffice. Sheet vinyl products are used most often because they deliver good performance at a reasonable cost. Tile, since the development of porcelain with epoxy grout, is my favorite at this time because of its high performance and easy maintenance. Poured or troweled floors are usually good performers at a premium cost, but are extremely applicator dependent. Sealed concrete and vinyl composition tile are economy performers.
|Vinyl composition tile||12" x 12"||Armstrong|
6 ft. wide rolls
most require waxing
|Ceramic, quarry tile||use epoxy grout|
4 x 4, 6 x 6, 8 x 8
can be slippery
|Carpeting||solution dyed, anti-microbial|
|Porcelain Tile||use epoxy grout|
matte finish, non-slip
8 x 8 best size, 12 x 12 available
cove base trim available
|Epoxy Grout||urine resistant||Laticrete|
|Concrete sealer||"Seal Hard"|
"Industrial Concrete Sealer"
|L & M Chemical|
Burke Concrete Co.
Cure Crete Chemical
|industry standard 4' or rolls||Johnsonite|
|less shrinkage than vinyl 4' lengths||Roppe, Burke|
|solvent welded, minimal color selection||VPI, Tarkett|
|Poured Epoxy Floors|
|1/8" shelf levelling quartz epoxy||Hallemite, Tenemec|
|MMA compound, anti-microbial||Silikal-Righter|
The majority of ceilings in the veterinary hospital are gypsum board or acoustic lay in tile. Gypsum board ceilings provide a hard, durable, paintable surface. While they block sound leaving a room, they reverberate and amplify sound within the room. Acoustical tile ceilings are suspended in a metal grid hung by wires from the building structure. They are typically available in 2 x 2 or 2 x 4 panels 5/8 or 3/4 inches thick. Their advantages are sound absorbency and accessibility of everything above the ceiling by removing any tile. Mineral fiber tiles are available in a large variety of styles to suit any decor and perform well in both stopping sound transmission and being sound absorbent. Their biggest disadvantages are moisture absorption and brittleness. Fiberglass tiles are typically 2 x 4 with a washable vinyl face. They are excellent sound absorbers and can be hosed and scrubbed without absorbing moisture. They are less designer-oriented than mineral fiber tiles.
Tectum is a panel product made from excelsior in a binder material and formed into 3/4 to 3'' thick panels, 24 inches wide, in lengths up to 16 feet. These panels perform well acoustically and can be fastened directly to structural members.
|Gypsum board||acrylic latex paint, flat||see wall paint|
NRC: .50 - .60
STC: .35 - .39
LR1 (light reflectance)
2' x 4' or 2' x 2'
|NRC: .75 - .95|
LR1 (light reflectance)
washable vinyl face
use in wet areas
2' x 4'
|1 x 6, 1 x 4, usually tung & grove |
aspen, cedar, pine
|Plastic laminate or wood|
wide selection of styles
|Merrilat, Omni, or Horizon series|
|Plastic laminate||custom manufactured|
|Plastic laminate||most economical surface|
hundreds of selections
|Granite||enduring, custom fit|
|Cold Spring Granite|
|Solid surfacing||homogenous, expensive|
monolithic, no visible joints
|Exterior Building Finish|
|Brick||traditional, lifetime material|
regional economies apply
|Concrete masonry (block)||variety of colors, textures|
can be structural or decorative
|Cement stucco||regionally effective,|
many colors available
needs maintenance, repair
|Synthetic stucco||sustains climatic extremes|
|Vinyl siding||almost universally available|
economical, low maintenance
variety of design
|Wood siding||paintable or stainable|
|Cement siding||competitive with vinyl|
must be painted, durable
|Asphalt shingle||most economical|
variety of design choice, colors
|Metal||painted or galvanized surface|
steel or aluminum
|R panel (economy)|
12''-36'' wide panels
standing seam (quality)
|Tile||cement or clay|
variety of colors, styles
|Roofs (low pitch-flat)|
|Asphalt||simplest, least expensive|
multiple plys for effectiveness
u/v, weather susceptible
|Modified asphalt||better u/v, weather extreme tolerant|
39" sheets, many seams
hot asphalt or torch applied
|Rubber||large rubber sheets,|
u/v and weather extreme resistant
good warranties available
|Wood/plastic laminate||wall hung||Plymold|
|Wood and metal/enamel||wall hung and free standing||Columbia|
Game Time, Inc.
|Remote canister, outlets||quiet, flexible||Lindsay|
|Polymer concrete||prefab sections with grate|
|Run drain||one drain for up to 10 runs|
use with trench drain
|Anesthesia gas scavengers|
|Active gas scavenger||central fan, remote outlets||Summit Hill|