All posts by Sarah Instarmac

Is your home décor out of date?

In a recent issue of House Beautiful, interior designer Zoe Warren revealed her top ’10 things that make a house feel outdated’. In at number six was popcorn ceilings – a bumpy texture that was once used to create statement ceilings but is now seen as outdated and unappealing.

Fortunately, if you are looking for a product to smooth over unwanted textured surfaces to help modernise your home, there is a simple solution available!

Suitable for both walls and ceilings, prem texture is a decorative finish that is easy to work with, has an extended working time to reduce wasted product and can be mixed with both warm and cold water for your convenience.

Available in 25kg bags from internal finishing experts Wondertex, prem texture has been designed to cover the roughest and most abstract of patterns without the need to pre-smooth first.

Wondertex has been providing internal finishing solutions for over 50 years. Their portfolio of professional products also includes a filler and smoother designed for filling and finishing plasterboard joints as well as repairing any accidental damage, a high grab adhesive for fixing all cove and cornice systems as well as expert drylining solutions.

Every product in the Wondertex range of easy to use decorating solutions, has been expertly formulated to provide professional results every single time.

Wondertex prem texture is available from builders and decorating merchants up and down the country. For details of your nearest stockist, or for further product information, please contact Wondertex by calling +44 (0) 1827 254461 or emailing wondertex@instarmac.co.uk.

Keep up-to-date with all the latest news from Wondertex by following them on Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook.

UltraScape – tried, tested and will not let you down

UltraScape have been successfully providing the industry with high quality paving installation materials for over 20 years. Their specialist materials are proven to work alongside all stone manufacturers with excellent results every single time.

Over the last 20 years, UltraScape have established themselves as a force to be reckoned with. They have built longstanding relationships with architects, specifiers and contractors, and have listened to the changing needs of the industry to develop a suite of proven and trusted paving installation materials.

Building the right foundation for your paving is critical to success. UltraScape’s bedding mortars will provide the ultimate laying course for all types of paving. UltraScape perma-bed is a permeable bedding mortar specifically designed with permeability in mind. Formulated to drain away any water migrating into the pavement via cracks or damaged areas, perma-bed reduces water related pavement failures as rainwater will drain away rather than sit on top of the stone.

What’s more, the free passage of water through the cured product ensures that correctly laid paving will not suffer from reflective staining emanating from the underside of the paving elements.

If you are looking to achieve an ‘Excellent’ CEEQUAL award, or are due to have a BREEAM assessment, then UltraScape eco-bed is the bedding mortar for you. UltraScape eco-bed is proven to provide the performance you would expect from a BS 7533 bedding mortar but also contains 20% recycled material, significantly reducing the consumption of virgin aggregates.

Priming is an important part of any paving installation but is something that is often overlooked. Neglecting to include a primer such as UltraScape pro-prime slurry primer, can have disastrous consequences for your project and as a result, the reputation of your business.

UltraScape pro-prime is a slurry primer manufactured to meet the demanding requirements of BS 7533. Suitable for use with all paving types including stone and porcelain pavers, UltraScape pro-prime is simple to use and is proven to increase adhesion, preventing failure and prolonging the life of your project.

Selecting the correct bedding mortar and primer to install your chosen paving is paramount for success but the finishing is also crucial. When making such an integral design decision, it is vital that you don’t compromise the aesthetics with poor jointing.

UltraScape have jointing options suitable for all designs and tastes. Their range of flowable grouts and brush in sand will make light work of any installation – the hardest decision you will make is choosing between the beautiful colour options available.

Available in three varieties – Original, ECO and Smooth, and two stunning colours – Natural Grey and Charcoal – UltraScape flowpoint rapid set flowable grout, provides a decorative, natural-effect finish every single time.

UltraScape flowpoint is easy to mix and apply, and once grouted, can be walked over in just 1 hour, minimising disruption and allowing you to move on to another part of the project quickly.

Completing the UltraScape jointing range is premjoint – the next generation in decorative, brush-in jointing solutions. Using popular natural paving stones as a guide, premjoint is available in three attractive colours – Cosmic Black, Natural Cashmere and Storm Grey. Furthermore, premjoint eliminates the need for hand pointing, can be used in all weathers, is frost resistant, and once applied, can be walked over in just 24-48 hours.

UltraScape have always prided themselves on providing the industry with quality paving materials. Each of the products that make up UltraScape’s BS 7533 Mortar Paving System has been put through rigorous independent testing by an UKAS accredited laboratory to assess their performance capabilities and to ensure they give the best performance possible in real time situations.

To find out more, or for assistance in selecting the perfect products for your next installation, please contact UltraScape by emailing ultrascape@instarmac.co.uk or calling +44 (0) 1827 254402.

Transform your patio and driveway with Geo-Fix® NEW colour range

Paving trends are changing. The rise in popularity of 20mm porcelain paving has created a demand for sophisticated and aesthetically pleasing jointing. With this in mind, Geo-Fix® are delighted to enhance their range of All Weather colours by introducing three new spectacular shades of brush-in sands.

Already available in two striking colours – Slate Grey and Mid Grey, Geo-Fix® All Weather paving jointing compound is now available in Anthracite, Graphite and Stone – a shade perfectly suited to all tastes and designs.

Pair Geo-Fix® All Weather in Anthracite with black paving for a stylish and high-end design that is truly out of this world.

Graphite is guaranteed to make a real statement when teamed with sophisticated dark grey tiles, or why not choose a lighter stone to create a dramatic monochrome effect.

Life isn’t black and white – it’s a million shades of grey. All Weather in Mid Grey is breath taking when used to joint lighter shades of paving. The contrast between the jointing and paving is a modern take on a classic design.

Create contrasting or complimentary jointing with Slate Grey. The unique blend of colours that make up Slate Grey is certain to transform your patio into a unique and desirable outdoor space.

If sandstone and limestone is your paving of choice, then Stone is the colour for you. A truly remarkable colour that perfectly complements natural paving to create a classic design that will never go out of style.

Geo-Fix® has been trusted by professionals for over 25 years. Geo-Fix® All Weather is a ready mixed jointing solution that can simply be brushed into joints with minimal effort. Joints are easily finished by compacting with a pointing tool, saving you valuable time when compared to traditional wet pointing methods.

Geo-Fix® All Weather offers huge time saving benefits, is totally resistant to freeze-thaw cycles and is proven to be a durable and weed resistant solution that is suitable for all paving projects.

To find out more about Geo-Fix® All Weather and to request a free colour swatch of each beautiful colour, please contact Geo-Fix® by calling +44 (0) 1827 905510 or emailing info@geo-fix.org.uk.

UltraFloor creates a safe environment at Retirement Village

Westbury Carpets & Floor Coverings have used UltraFloor’s latest product innovation, Level IT Pro30, to install 400sqm of LVT flooring at Queen’s Court Retirement Housing in Bedford.

Background

Located a short walk from Bedford town centre, Queen’s Court Retirement Housing provides its residents with a comfortable home within a vibrant community. Creating a safe and pleasant environment is paramount at Queen’s Court, and so, with this in mind, 400sqm of old carpet was removed throughout the property and replaced with Universal Distinctive Flooring LVT.

The Challenge

A quick installation with minimal disruption was paramount to the success of this project. The project also required a rapid setting floor leveller that would be suitable for use over old adhesive residues.

The Solution

Experienced flooring contractors, Westbury Carpets & Floor Coverings. knew that UltraFloor Level IT Pro30 was the perfect floor leveller for the job ahead.

Level IT Pro30 has been formulated to refurbish existing floors in previously unachievable timescales, without removing old adhesive residues first – a fantastic ‘one product does all’ solution for today’s busy contractor.

UltraFloor Level IT Pro30 is a high performance, high tolerance, free-flowing smoothing underlayment, suitable for use with most common subfloors without the need for priming first. This key feature makes Level IT Pro30 ideal for areas in need of a quick turnaround, particularly time sensitive projects that require same day returning access to vulnerable residents or key public services, such as Queen’s Court.

The benefits don’t end there. All subfloors prepared using Level IT Pro30 can accept foot traffic in as little as 30 minutes, and are ready to receive unbonded floor coverings after 45 minutes and bonded floor coverings after 90 minutes, including LV and Vinyl, a popular and luxury floor covering with no room for error.

With less time spent on prep and less time to set, Level IT Pro30 will save you more time twice over, leaving the client happy, deadlines met and increasing productivity.

Results

On completing the project, Ross Campbell, Partner of Westbury Carpets & Floor Coverings commented: “Queen’s Court were over the moon with the job. We completed on time with minimal disruption to residents. We installed the flooring during the winter months, but the colder weather had no effect on the performance of Level IT Pro30 – it ticked all the boxes.”

To find out more about Level IT Pro30, to place an order, or for details of your nearest flooring distributor, please contact the UltraFloor team by calling +44 (0) 1827 254402, emailing ultrafloor@instarmac.co.uk, or sending a Direct Message on their social media platforms.

 

UltraTileFix adhesives are guaranteed to perform every time

UltraFloor’s sister brand, UltraTileFix, is home to a portfolio of contractor-friendly, premium floor tile adhesives perfectly suited for the flooring industry.

For the installation of popular ceramic and porcelain floor tiles, UltraTileFix recommends the use of a standard set tile adhesive such as ProSS Flex. Formulated with extended workability, ProSS Flex can receive light foot traffic within 16 hours and is suitable for installations where speed of set isn’t essential.

Today’s popular large format tiles demand an adhesive with exceptional grab and ProGrip FX does just that. ProGrip FX is a fibre reinforced, single part, semi-rapid setting, flexible tile adhesive that is just the job for this type of tiling task. The fibres within the ProGrip FX formula aid the adhesive capabilities of the product making it a stronger bond, as well as providing superior non-slip properties.

UltraTileFix ProRapid PB is a rapid setting, cementitious floor adhesive with increased bond strength. Polymer modified for an enhanced performance, ProRapid PB is ideal for use with popular floor tiles such as ceramic, mosaic and natural stone.

The flexible properties of ProRapid RS rapid set tile adhesive makes it ideal for use in wet areas and with underfloor heating. Polymer modified and formulated with enhanced adhesion, ProRapid RS is suitable for use with most common substrates and has a set time of just 2.5 hours.

Also available are ProFlex SP rapid set and ProFlex SPES standard set flexible tile adhesives. Both adhesives are classified as S1 in accordance with EN 12004 and have a high level for deformation for greater tolerance to movement. The S1 properties of ProFlex SP and ProFlex SPES make them the perfect choice for timber floor and underfloor heating systems.

If you’re looking for a floor adhesive which boasts ultimate S2 flexibility then ProFlex S2 is the adhesive for you! The superior flexible properties of ProFlex S2 makes it the ideal choice for areas where movement or vibration can occur including plywood, chipboard overlays, swimming pools and underfloor heating.

What’s more, ProFlex S2 has been formulated using FibreBond technology – a process which involves the addition of fibre particles for superior non-slip properties.

Completing the range of ProFlex CSA – a Calcium Sulphate Aluminate based adhesive for compatibility with calcium sulphate screeds. This compatibility ensures low tension throughout the curing process without the need for barrier primers.

Every flooring adhesive in the UltraTileFix range is available in a 20kg contractor-friendly bag, features a handy product selection table, which makes choosing the perfect product swift and easy, and boasts a lifetime guarantee – giving you complete confidence that UltraTileFix products are designed to last.

For further information on any of the materials within the UltraFloor and UltraTileFix ranges, or for help with product selection, please call +44 (0) 1827 254402 or email enquiries@instarmac.co.uk.

Geo-Fix® Celebrates 25th Anniversary

2021 is a significant year for Geo-Fix® as the respected paving brand celebrates their 25th anniversary.

When Geo-Fix Original was first brought to market 25 years ago, the paving industry was a completely different landscape compared to today. With traditional cementitious jointing products causing huge problems for Local Authorities and contractors, it soon became clear that an alternative solution was required.

After consulting and listening to the needs of the entire paving industry, Geo-Fix® developed a new technology using sand polymers to create Geo-Fix® Original brush-in jointing compound – a truly original product that revolutionised traditional jointing methods.

Creating a new product is one thing, but Geo-Fix® knew how important it was to carry out extensive testing with the contractors who would be using the product to guarantee it was suitable and performed perfectly – and that is exactly what they did.

This extensive research, development and testing that took place 25 years ago has resulted in products that have maintained their integrity and are proven to stand the test of time.

During their 25-year history, Geo-Fix® have established a significant distribution network of independent builders merchants, up and down the country. In 2013, they enhanced their product offering to include Geo-Fix® All Weather jointing compound, a superior brush-in sand that can be used in all weathers, and now offer a selection of beautiful coloured sands to complement all designs and tastes.

In 2020, Geo-Fix® partnered with Instarmac Group plc, a British manufacturer with over 45 years’ experience manufacturing and servicing the construction industry, to become their nominated distribution supplier. . Geo-Fix® Original and All Weather is now sold in over 20 countries including Europe and Australia.

“I am so proud of Geo-Fix® and everything the brand has achieved over the last 25 years. We have always prided ourselves on being the market-leader of brush-in jointing compounds and we will work hard to continue achieving this. We are constantly innovating to meet the ever-changing needs of the paving market and are poised to move and adapt to meet evolving trends. We have built a fantastic reputation and I look forward to seeing how Geo-Fix® develops over the next 25 years.” John Andrews, Company Director.

To celebrate their 25th anniversary, Geo-Fix® are delighted to bring their valued and loyal customers an exclusive 25% discount on Geo-Fix® Original. Geo-Fix® Original is a ready mixed paving jointing compound that can simply be brushed into joints with minimal effort. Geo-Fix® Original is easily finished by compacting with a pointing tool saving valuable time compared to traditional wet pointing.

Choose Geo-Fix® for a professional finish in the minimum time.

For more information on Geo-Fix®, their expert brush-in jointing compounds, and their exclusive anniversary offer, please call 01827 908510 or email info@geo-fix.org.

Renovate your next ceramics project

There are many reasons why ceramic tiles remain an extremely popular choice of floor covering. The variety of colours, styles and intricate patterns make ceramics an attractive choice for homeowners.

As with all flooring jobs, using the correct installation materials is crucial to a successful outcome. Flooring specialists, UltraFloor, have a range of expert subfloor preparation materials suitable for the installation of popular stone and ceramic floor coverings.

The UltraFloor range includes the much-loved Level IT Renovate. Developed for the renovation of existing floors, Level IT Renovate is fibre reinforced for added strength and to minimise the risk of hairline cracks – reducing a common cause of costly failure.

Suitable for deep applications from 3-40mm, Level IT Renovate is multi-purpose for extensive use and boasts excellent flow properties, making this flexible and versatile floor leveller ideal for a wide range of flooring substrates.

Level IT Renovate is a single part smoothing underlayment, offering a unique alternative within the UltraFloor range, and is suitable for use over most strong and stable subfloors, which makes this fantastic product perfect for both commercial and domestic applications.

Level IT Renovate is protein free, reducing the risk and spread of bacteria, and is low odour providing a pleasant environment for contractors, homeowners and any staff working within the project area.

In addition, Level IT Renovate has a working time of 20-30 minutes, can be walked on in as little as 2 – 2.5 hours and can receive floor coverings in just 4 hours.

What’s more, Level IT Renovate is now approved for external use – a great benefit for those looking to create an outdoor oasis that will seamlessly extend any indoor / outdoor living space.

Selecting the correct floor leveller to install your chosen stone or ceramic floor covering is paramount for success but the finishing is also crucial. When making such an integral design decision, it is vital that you don’t compromise the aesthetics with poor jointing.

UltraFloor’s sister brand, UltraTileFix, have a range of adhesives, grouts, silicones and ancillaries, all perfectly formulated and relied upon for tiling installations in a variety of environments.

For further information on the products available from UltraFloor and UltraTileFix, or for details of your nearest stockist, please contact their team of experts by calling +44 (0) 1827 254402 or emailing enquiries@instarmac.co.uk.

UltraScape paves the ‘Future of Living’

UltraScape’s BS 7533 Mortar Paving System has been used to install 15,000sqm of paving at Dubai Creek – the next generation in contemporary life, work and play.

Background
Located on the banks of the historic creek, Dubai Creek is home to 711,399 serviced apartments and 7.3million sqm of residential space. Surrounded by 700,000sqm of open spaces and parks, Dubai Creek was born from ‘the fusion of creativity and innovation’ and will ‘redefine the future’ of its residents.

Challenge
Dubai Creek has been designed to the highest standard, a feature that was extended to all surrounding areas.

As well as needing to provide the perfect aesthetic, the paving installation materials needed to excel in the humid and hot temperatures famous in Dubai, and have a quick set time so as not to hinder the project’s completion.

The Solution
With this in mind, Parsons, the Consultants working on this exciting development, adopted the use of UltraScape’s BS 7533 Mortar Paving System to install 15,000sqm of paving around the Marina, Promenade and Boardwalk next to the Dubai Creek waterfront.

Results
Instarmac International’s partner, Tanseeq LLC, supplied UltraScape’s Mortar Paving System to satisfy the Engineers requirements and design.

UltraScape’s Mortar Paving System is made up of tested, trusted and proven materials including pro-bed HS bedding mortar, pro-prime slurry primer and flowpoint tropical smooth flowable grout.

UltraScape pro-bed hs provides the ultimate laying course for all types of paving. It can be laid from 10mm – 75mm, is shrinkage compensated and can be opened to foot traffic in just 12 hours, allowing contractors to move on to the next part of the project quickly.

Formulated to provide an exceptional bond between your paving element and pro-bed hs, pro-prime slurry primer eliminates costly failures caused by general wear and tear and heavy load bearing.

To complete the installation, flowpoint tropical smooth was used in Charcoal & Natural Grey to joint the selected pavers. UltraScape flowpoint tropical smooth has been formulated for use in hot climates and can be applied in temperatures in excess of 35°C – perfect for this project.

UltraScape flowpoint tropical smooth is a flowable grout which allows for large areas of paving to be grouted quickly. Suitable for joints from 3mm to 50mm and as a deep as 200mm, flowpoint tropical smooth has been developed over a number of years to provide a durable finish which will not crack or stain – even in the extremely hot temperatures in Dubai.

With an initial set of just 15 minutes, and a walk on time of one hour, it is unsurprising that flowpoint tropical smooth has been synonymous with fast application, cost-effective and robust jointing, the world over.

The work was completed to an excellent standard by one of Dubai‘s premier landscaping contractors, Proscape LLC.

For more information about UltraScape’s BS 7533 Mortar Paving System, please contact Instarmac International by emailing international@instarmac.com or calling +44 (0) 1827 254400.

 

 

Source: Properties.emaar.com

Instarmac’s Technical Manager celebrates 25-year service award

Celebrations are aplenty at Instarmac as Technical Manager, Sham Ali, celebrates 25 years’ service.

Sham Ali joined Instarmac on the 1st April 1996 as R & D Technologist. Within 6 months of his employment, Sham formulated and brought to market five new products – a huge achievement that helped lay the foundations for Instarmac to become the respected and trusted company it is today.

After being promoted to Technical Manager in 1997, Sham’s next focus was to expand the Instarmac portfolio to include tile adhesives, grouts and floor levellers – products which would go on to make up the UltraTileFix and UltraFloor brands.

As well as pioneering many game-changing products, Sham has played a critical role in obtaining independent and third party approval for a number of UltraCrete’s products and systems. Sham has worked closely with the British Board of Agrément for 20 years and helped UltraCrete gain its first approval in 2001 for their world-renowned Instant Road Repair. Other approvals followed including UltraCrete’s Manhole Reinstatement System in 2005, Permanent Pothole Repair in 2011 and Instaband ECO in 2012.

What’s more, Sham assisted with the specification, design and installation of the state-of-the-art laboratory equipment at both Instarmac’s Kingsbury Link and Dordon sites.

It’s not just R&D that has benefitted from Sham’s experience and spectacular knowledge. Sham assists with technical site visits and provides telephone support for any customer that needs it. He has visited licensees in both Malaysia and Canada to commission their manufacturing plant for the production of Instant Road Repair and sits on a number of industry committees.

“I am honoured to work with a number of industry committees including FeRFA, CFA, RSTA, TTA, the Stone Federation and BSI. Working in partnership with such bodies helps us to fully understand the needs of the industry and allows us to develop standards to drive change and raise standards across the industry as a whole”.

When looking back over his career at Instarmac and his proudest achievement to date, Sham commented: “I have been lucky to enough to work on some fantastic projects – including the refurbishment of the bridge decks at Spaghetti Junction in Birmingham – but I would have to say my proudest achievement so far is the development of Envirobed HA104®.

“When we launched this product there was nothing else like it in the industry. It was a completely unique product. We achieved something really special with Envirobed HA104®. It elevated our product offering and the reputation of Instarmac. A really proud moment for me.”

During his time at Instarmac, Sham has formulated, developed and enhanced many of today’s much-loved highway, paving, tiling and flooring products. Sham is a crucial member of the Technical team and pillar of support for the business as a whole. Congratulations Sham on this fantastic long-service award.

To contact Instarmac please email enquiries@instarmac.co.uk or call +44 (0) 1827 254402.

Instarmac Holdings acquires 20% share in Fabulosa

Home cleaning sensation Fabulosa (My Fabulosa Ltd) is set for further expansion, following major funding from Instarmac Holdings, a group of entrepreneurial minded manufacturing and distribution businesses based in the UK.

The recent multi-million pound partnership by Instarmac Holdings, equates to a 20% shareholdings in Fabulosa, the rapidly growing and highly ambitious young household manufacturing business, established in 2019, by co-founders Mike and James Sharpe.

The news follows Fabulosa’s impressive trading statement in February announcing a substantial £30 million sales for the 12 months ending December 31st, and sharing their ambitious plans in place to achieve a £40 million turnover by the end of 2021.

For both companies, the move has been a natural progression. Instarmac’s aerosol manufacturing facility in the group’s portfolio has been producing Fabulosa’s aerosol products for the past 18 months, and the partnership will further strengthen the relationship and customer service advantages of both parties.

Paul Butcher of Instarmac Holdings will now join the Fabulosa board, and the partnership is viewed by both parties as an invaluable horizontal integration opportunity.

This development means that both companies will be well placed to drive the synergies between Fabulosa and Instarmac Holdings facility Aztec Aerosols, with their combined requirement of 12 million aerosol cans annually, and ambitious international expansion plans. Additionally, this will only strengthen their long term plans and commitment to sustainable volumes.

To support the partnership, Instarmac Holdings has committed an additional £1.5 million for the purchase of a state-of-the-art aerosol filling line, together with a further £0.5 million spend for the construction of a warehouse extension to accommodate the forecast increased capacity.

John Holcroft, Group CEO of Instarmac Holdings comments: “As a major supplier to Fabulosa, we built up a close relationship, and are extremely impressed with the management’s highly innovative, dynamic and consumer-focused approach. They have created major disruption in a mature and very static sector, and are continuing to grow at a rapid level. We are now looking forward to supporting the board with their onward journey.”

James Sharpe, Co-Founder of My Fabulosa Ltd states: “This is a pivotal move for our brand, and testament to how far we have come in such a short space of time. The business is hungry and gearing up for further significant expansion. There is a strong cultural fit between the two businesses, and we are incredible excited about the prospect of what we can now achieve with Instarmac Holdings, particularly with the synergies we can drive through both businesses and our ambitious international growth.”