Perimeter Expansion with Laminate Flooring...

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  #1  
Old 07-13-15, 03:40 PM
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Question Perimeter Expansion with Laminate Flooring...

I understand the need for an expansion perimeter (1/4") around the installation of CoreTec... what I don't understand is this:

If it's 100% water proof, and you have an expansion perimeter, what happens when/if water (or worse, and anxious puppy pees or something?) gets in under the stuff (cork) from the perimeter joint that you've left??

I'm guessing you can't silicone caulk it or anything like that because the caulk would usurp the benefit for the expansion joint, no?... well, I called CoreTec (US Floors) and they said, "yes" you can caulk it. But I'm hesitant. What say you guys?

So what's the deal??

Thanks,

Pete
 
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Old 07-13-15, 04:33 PM
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You are worried about a weakness of ANY type of flooring not just the one you are interested in. All floors have a gap at the walls. All floors are vulnerable to pet spills. I think you are over thinking this.
 
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Old 07-13-15, 04:54 PM
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Ok... so does that mean it's a "go" to caulk the perimeter with a flexible silicone based caulk or not?

Thanks!
Pete
 
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Old 07-13-15, 05:54 PM
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Get it in writing/email from the manufacturer, but I agree, you are overthinking.

And who said 100% waterproof? The dealer? The manufacturer? The only thing that's waterproof is some sort of roll flooring and even then not at the edges if there's enough water.
 
  #5  
Old 07-13-15, 06:37 PM
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100% waterproof as in I took a piece of it, put it in a bucket of water for 3 days, and when I took it out, it looked exactly as it did when I put it in... still clicked together and everything.

Here's the link:
Products | 7" Plank | USFloors

If I'm in the wrong, forum... just let me know... I'm asking a general question about the ability of silicone caulk to act as an adequate expansion joint around the perimeter of a room...

Not sure what I'm "over thinking" by not wanting an accidentally spilled cup of milk (kids... LOL) -- or an over-excited puppy (pee) from getting under the flooring at the perimeter.

Geesh...
 
  #6  
Old 07-13-15, 09:35 PM
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No reason to "Geesh" us. We don't know your expertise or where the info came from.

Unless it's mentioned in the install instructions, there's no reason to caulk.

As to the waterproof, I did a similar test with MDF trim and yeah, it did pretty good. I still wouldn't believe it's 100% waterproof. Once the mold spores start everything gets wonky.

Oh crap, just looked this isn't real laminate as most people think of it...it's LVT with a cork backing. That's a completely different animal when it comes to expansion and water. Heck, it even says it won't expand or contract in normal environment.

I'll guarantee you this...if you have an issue down the road and try to get warranty help...if the install instructions weren't followed or you don't have documentation of a variance by the manufacturer, you'll be out of luck.
 

Last edited by Gunguy45; 07-13-15 at 11:10 PM. Reason: forgot a word
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Old 07-13-15, 09:44 PM
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If you called CoreTec and they said yes, then go ahead. But I would get it from them in writing, as Vic mentioned, in case you have any warranty issues. Silicone should be ok since it can expand and contract 400%.
 
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Old 07-14-15, 03:38 AM
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Thanks!

I'll reach out to them and get it in writing.
 
  #9  
Old 07-14-15, 05:29 AM
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Alright, lets talk about expansion and contraction for a minute. According to CoreTec, the vinyl floating floor will not expand and contract under normal circumstances. It goes on to not define what normal circumstances mean, but in the warranty, it makes mention of what is and isn't covered in the event of a water/pet event and left to set and not immediately cleaned up is not covered. Second, it says that the planks are waterproof as a stand alone, but the floor itself is not a vapor barrier. This means moisture can transfer between the top and bottom of the floor. Now about expansion and contraction - While the flooring itself is dimensionally stable, the rest of the house is not. Your floor joist system and plywood underlayment WILL expand and contract under the CorTec. If you silicone in the edges, you essentially lock the perimeter of a floor in place - one that will not expand and contract in any form of harmony with the subfloor. Two things can happen - 1. If the subfloor expands with the perimeter locked down, the the edges may pull on the locking mechanism causing separation of the planks in the field. or 2. If the subfloor contracts with the perimeter locked down, the edges will push on the overall floor causing buckling (lay a piece of paper flat and push from both ends, it lifts in the middle).

Given that background, here is the lead passage from your installation instructions for your flooring from CoreTec -

"Because houses and buildings, as well as adjacent hardwood or laminate floors, expand and contract, USFloors recommends to leave a expansion gap between the perimeter walls and any adjacent hardwood floor."

So my recommendation remains that you do not silicone the perimeter of any floating floor.
 
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