Foam VS Felt Laminate Floating Floor Underlay

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Old 09-13-12, 11:35 PM
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Foam VS Felt Laminate Floating Floor Underlay

So Ive got a floating floor that I want to lay in my hallway, lounge and kitchen area, my subfloor is concrete slab. I dont wanna spend too much so I choose an 8mm Pascal floor. I wasnt sure what underlay to buy, Id heard thicker is better and apparently the felt underlay makes for a much better sound when you walk on the boards...so I went with a 4mm lamilay super felt premium underlay ( mistake ). I put down the underlay and laid the whole hallway except for the last row. I turn off the music and walk around on the newly laid floorboards...the sound is loud and hollow and I can hear creaking in some places and alot of crackling. I determine that the underlay is too thick for 8mm boards...its too soft and the boards have too much flex in them...but I couldnt be sure. So I borrowed some lamilay 3mm gold foam underlay that a friend had left over from his install and did a side by side comparison.

I ran out a length of 4mm felt right next to a length of 3mm foam underlay, then layed down boards till covered. I layed the boards in the middle of my loungeroom so there is no tight spots at all once its down. Walking on the felt it feels the same as in the hallway, loud, hollow and making some crackling noises in places...but walking on the foam underlday its a very noticable differance, its quiet and solid underfoot with no crackling at all.

Honestly I dont think the 4mm felt is any good for 8mm boards, it might work great on 10-12mm higher quality boards that dont flex as much, but I dont know. The packaging for the Lamilay Super Felt says its for laminate floating floors, but it doesnt work for the boards Im using.

End result for me is pulling up the boards in the hallway, throwing the felt underlay in the bin and relaying the hallway and the rest of the house with the foam underlay...much better.

Conclusion - If your laying cheap 8mm boards, buy cheap thin foam underlay and you should get a quiet and solid underfoot floor to walk on.

Just thought I would post this up so that anyone thinking of doing a similar job using similar products doesnt have the same problems I ran into
 
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Old 09-14-12, 03:31 AM
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Welcome to the forums! You should lay down whatever the manufacturer suggests for underlayment. You may void their warranty if you don't. Generally the thicker the underlayment the more vertical movement and creaks you will have. It will sound "clacky". It does anyway. BTW, I have never seen anyone install laminate in the manner in which you did. How do you put in adjoining pieces??? How do you put in your last end rows with it "toothed" like that??
 
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Old 09-14-12, 05:01 AM
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Thanks for your reply chandler. I pulled up that floor as soon as my comparison was done...it was just a 'test bed' if you like


And on manufacturers guidelines...note to PASCAL, How bout putting that information on the visible side of your sealed packaging instead of the reverse side
 
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