Should I float or glue locking bamboo?

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Old 11-07-17, 01:58 PM
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Should I float or glue locking bamboo?

I have 800 sq ft of 1/2" locking solid stranded bamboo floor on its way and I'm trying to decide between floating and glue. I'm doing every room on my 1st floor (see attached pic), except for the powder room and adjacent W/D area. The flooring will run lengthwise from one side of the house to the other, if that makes sense. The longest length of a single span is 30' from "front" of dining room to "back" of living room, and 30' from the garage entry to the far (right) side of living room. We are installing over a wood subfloor (I assume OSB, but I have yet to check).

My concerns for floating are: hollow sound (I wanted solid h/w, nailed down), expansion issues (I don't want to use T molding), and dealing with 2 stair transitions (2 steps down from front entry into living room and the top edge of the basement stairs off the living room).

My concerns with glue down are: slow/messy install (and hearing about it from my wife, who wants to float), difficulty of removal (although I don't plan to), and I guess that's it.

I mainly want to know how concerned I should be regarding expansion issues if I do a floating install? Between the pinch point(s) heading into the kitchen and the somewhat long length of some of the spans, will I be able to get away with not having expansion joints (aka T molding)?? I'm in CO, where it's very dry but I have a house humidifier and plan on keeping the house around 40-50% RH. I consider myself quite competent at recreational home improvement and am not worried about the difficulties of executing either install...I just don't know best practices when it comes to this stuff.

Thanks!
Eric

Flooring: www.flooranddecor.co...amboo-100095611.html

Pic: photos.app.goo.gl/ve9Zb2hdjPslcIwZ2
 
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Old 11-07-17, 02:27 PM
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What do the installation instructions for your flooring say? Do what the manufacturer recommends. There have been people posting to the forum that glued down a floor that should be floating and they are asking what they can do to get rid of the buckling and bulging.
 
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Old 11-07-17, 02:46 PM
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The product description says that the floor can be floated or glued. The installation directions seem to be geared towards floating, but they are not very specific:
http://cdn.flooranddecor.com/docs/In...loatingEco.pdf

Your comment about people having buckling issues when they glued down a floating floor is interesting. I am under the impression that buckling/bulging is more of a concern for floating floors that have pinch points and no expansion gaps....which is one of the reasons that I'm considering glue in the first place (I don't like T molding). Am I incorrect in my understanding?
 
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Old 11-07-17, 03:13 PM
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If you remove all the base molding and undercut your jambs you should have no issues with floating. More than enough room for expansion. I understand your desire for no transition pieces at the doorways. Keep in mind that there are limits to runs on any floor so going over the max run is at your own risk. I noticed that nothing was mentioned of an foam underlaymet, usually have something to cushion unless it is already attached to the planks.

Best practice with flooring is to install perpendicular to the floor joists so that the flooring spans multiple joists. Sometimes there is deflection between the joists in a subfloor system which telescopes to a wavy floor when you lay parallel to the joist system.
 
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Old 11-07-17, 04:28 PM
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Thanks czizzi for the response. I do plan to undercut the jambs and totally replace the base, so I will have a sufficient expansion gap around the edge of the rooms. My concern would be bucking somewhere in the middle of the field, related to the two 30' spans/segments of flooring....as well as the pinch point(s) in and around the kitchen entry. I've seen people quote the "limit" as being 25 ft length, 40 ft length, and even 1000 sq ft before you need to start adding in expansion joints into the middle of the field. Is there any "tried and true" rule as to when you NEED to add T molding...or am I in the range where I'm going to have to risk it and hope?

As for the underlayment....I'm trying to decide between cork and a top shelf foam. Eliminating any chance for a hollow sound is my main priority. Some of the premium foam underlayments claim to have noise reduction that is superior to cork. Have they gotten that good, or is cork the way to go?
 
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Old 11-07-17, 05:21 PM
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Key on underlayment is to not go too thick. More cushion is bad for click lock. A basic foam underlayment will suffice without adding the expense of cork. I would consider, as much as you don't like it, at least one t-molding at the door threshold. Give yourself the piece of mid that you won't incur problems or issues down the road. I guaranty that you will not notice it a day after you install it.

Good luck with your install and check back as needed.
 
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Old 11-07-17, 11:49 PM
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I am under the impression that buckling/bulging is more of a concern for floating floors that have pinch points and no expansion gaps
Although that is something that needs to be watched, the acclimation of the flooring will far exceed the issues of pinching,

I have personally had a buckled nail down floor that had plenty of perimeter gap.

I can not stress the need to have a moisture gauge to verify that flooring and sub flooring are spot on. I learned the hard way!

A floating floor will be more tolerant to this issue.
 
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