Underlayment for Engineered Hardwood on Concrete floor


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Old 08-21-14, 10:09 AM
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Question Underlayment for Engineered Hardwood on Concrete floor

Too many choices on underlayment.

Is the thicker or thinner underlayment better for engineered hardwood on concrete floor?

It's a simple question, but can't find clear answer.

Thanks.
 
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Old 08-21-14, 10:53 AM
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Does the flooring manufacturer have a recommendation?
 
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Old 08-21-14, 04:40 PM
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On concrete you need a combination vapor barrier and sound deadening material underlayment. Too thick is not a benefit as it may cause unwanted movement and overwork the click lock mechanism on the flooring. Your flooring manufacturer will recommend the correct underlayment for your product. You can then shop comparable's using those specs.
 
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Old 08-21-14, 04:46 PM
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I believe the most important thing on a concrete floor is to have it flat. The recommended underlayment by the manufacturer will keep you in good graces of warranty.
 
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Old 08-24-14, 10:39 AM
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The few pages of manual that came with Home Legend click-lock engineered hardwood planks, only shows how to install, it didn't contain any information about underlayments.

I saw lots of underlayments online, but I wanted to see them for my self. I went to both Lowe's and Homedepot, but Lowe's only had couple that are over $1/sqft. Homedepot had more choices from $.25 to $.65. I went ahead and bought TrafficMASTER Premium 3-in-1 Underlayment 100 sq. ft. 25 ft. x 4 ft. x .093 in. 0.23mm thick and were $.45/sqft.

My concrete floor is pretty leveled. I filled all the nail holes made by the carpet strips. So far the installation is going smooth. You can see them on the photos.

One other question, once the baseboards has been reinstalled, do you caulk between the wood floor and the baseboard?

Thanks for replies.

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Old 08-24-14, 03:28 PM
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do you caulk between the wood floor and the baseboard?
No, Your floor is floating and needs an expansion gap around the entire room. You do not tack or capture it in place anywhere. You instead, add shoe molding to the base to ease the transition between the floor and wall trim.
 
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Old 08-24-14, 06:44 PM
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No caulking, got it. Thanks.

I noticed when walking on the new floor, some areas make a noise. And when kicked with my heals, I can hear the slapping sound. Noises are especially noticeable near the edges. I'm debating if I should remove them and glue down.

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Homedepot special ordered the T-Moldings but hasn't came yet. I looked up the specs, it's not the same MFG, and from the picture the color doesn't seem to match. Not only that, it's 1.75" width. My spacing between the tile and the wood floor is 2". Also, debating if I should cut 1.25" to fill in or re-order the molding to wider one. Probably the latter?

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Old 08-24-14, 06:55 PM
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Your mfg you purchased will have a recommended thickness. A lot are around .009 thick. I have actually use the same thickness in painters plastic (black kind). It's way cheaper than the flooring mfg underlayment, and still offers the same thing...a moisture barrier to the concrete. As far as expansion gap, most recommend around a 1/2 inch. The noise you hear is probably the underlayment slapping onto the concrete and the flooring. If it is extremely noticeable in a particular spot, it would likely mean that you have a dip in the concrete floor there. An easy fix with some quickset...with the floor removed.
 
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Old 08-25-14, 06:42 AM
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My spacing between the tile and the wood floor is 2"
I would rip down some flooring to reduce the gap but still provide for recommended expansion gap. After you rip your plank down, take a chisel and remove the lip from the tongue side of the click lock and apply some wood glue to it and install it on the last row. Use a pull bar to get it tight and use some blue painters tape to hold in place while the glue sets up overnight.

As far as the uneven floor and the "slapping", it means a dip in the slab. If the area is near where you will have furniture, the problem will take care of itself with the weight of the furniture. If in a walking zone, you may have to remove the flooring to level out the slab. SLC, or skim coat patching material can be used. Too much movement could cause premature failure of the click mechanism.
 
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Old 08-25-14, 09:48 AM
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Odd, I used a long level, and made sure the floor was fairly leveled... Also, feels strange when walked on.

Meanwhile, I gotta do my family room. The guy who ordered my engineered wood, suggested that I glue down with special glue that has moisture protection. Then I won't need the underlayment. Cost between the underlayment and that glue is comparable. I may have to consider that for the family room. Then if I like it, I'll redo the living room.

Until then, I'll leave out the transition molding at the living room.

Thanks.
 
 

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