laminate install


  #1  
Old 07-29-21, 11:41 AM
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laminate install

I know the flooring is supposed to float but how bad would it be if I nailed it?

While I've installed hardwood I never installed laminate before and it's giving me a fit! I get 5-6 pieces locked together, go for the next piece and the first 2 pop loose. At this rate I'll be weeks putting it down My wife thinks I should nail it and be done but I know nails will prevent the flooring from moving.

The flooring is 7.5" x 50" and 12mm thick.
 
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Old 07-29-21, 11:43 AM
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No, dont nail it.. You have to put shims on the flooring edge to maintain the spacing and then you work back away from those shims. So as long as you have shimmed it solidly on the edges, the floor should not be moving as you tap on it.

Often if it wants to pop apart it's because you haven't got a straight line established. Or your shims at the wall need to compensate for any crookedness in the wall. Or you don't have enough shims in. If the floor moves when you tap it, you must not have it shimmed properly at the wall. (Or it wouldn't be moving)
 
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Old 07-29-21, 11:53 AM
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Have you contacted the manufacturer support or engineering? Do the instructions have any provision for gluing or nailing it down? I have talked with manufacturers about other products and they have advised that other installation methods are acceptable or even better than advertised or provided in the instructions.
 
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Old 07-29-21, 11:57 AM
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I have it shimmed about every foot. I think the flooring bounces back after I click in so many pieces. The shims will be tight and then they get loose To start with I did have straight line issues with the room not being square - I've since rectified that. The pieces pop loose either length ways or on the end. If I wasn't already bald I would be after installing this floor.
 
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Old 07-29-21, 12:09 PM
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Almost every laminate I have worked with, after you have it clicked together, you need to take a block of mating scrap material and just very lightly tap it to ensure it is snapped together. (Not hitting hard, just a firm tap) Because once its locked together it should not be able to pull apart as long is its staying flat and straight, and there is no bounce at the wall from poor shimming. I tap it toward the shims ahead of me and on the ends toward the left. (Since every laminate floor I've ever seen is installed left to right).

I don't know if it would help you but put some pieces of 2" masking tape on all your seams. Might help hold them together if its coming apart.
 
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Old 07-29-21, 12:14 PM
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It installs left to right which is a minor problem because of the wood stove hearth in the left corner. can't use shims there. I don't want to start in the opposite corner because I intend to continue down the hallway with the same laminate once the living rm is done.

I'm not convinced the pieces lock together as good as they should - maybe poor tolerances in manufacturing ?? Some seem to lock better than others.
 
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Old 07-29-21, 12:22 PM
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Could be. Some laminates, especially the fibrous ones, you really need to watch the grooves because they can have bits of crap in them (from the factory) that will prevent them from clicking together. Bits on the floor can be a problem too, I shop vac everything frequently as I lay the flooring to ensure its clean since moving around can stir up a bit of gravel or whatnot here or there.

Poor quality is a problem with a lot of laminates... and I guarantee you will never install that brand again if it gives you fits.
 
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Old 07-29-21, 12:24 PM
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Another thing I don't understand is it says in the directions once you get done and before you reinstall the base you are supposed to use backer rod and silicone caulk [says no acrylic caulk] all the way around the perimeter of the room. Seems like that would prevent the floor from floating ??
 
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Old 07-29-21, 12:27 PM
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The mfg determined silicone has enough movement (+/- 400%) to do that. And that step is typically only needed when you are following the "waterproof" instructions. For instance, what's a bedroom got to be waterproof for.

Not all laminates are "waterproof".

Only other thing I wondered about, is your floor has to be really flat. Laminate doesn't like dips or humps. The instructions say how flat the floor must be.
 
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Old 07-29-21, 12:31 PM
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This laminate is called damp proof. My son put waterproof down in his addition. It was thin and didn't need a pad. As far as I know it went down easy.

I guess I could caulk near the foyer as that would be the only place the floor would have a chance of getting wet .... excluding a spilled drink.
 
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Old 07-30-21, 03:08 AM
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My youngest son came over after work yesterday and saved the day. He took up most of what I put down, removed the shims and got it to go together correctly This is my son who works behind a desk and has no construction experience except for the 264 sq ft addition we added to his house. He got more done in 1.5 hr than I did in 1.5 days! Afterwards he said he was a little worried when he asked to remove what was down and start over because he wasn't 100% certain he could get it right ..... but he did. I'm a proud papa!
 
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Old 07-30-21, 04:55 AM
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Good. Yeah, if you have it shimmed and it still wants to come apart it usually isn't as straight as you think it is.
 
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Old 07-30-21, 07:42 AM
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The longest straightedge I have is a 6' level and I thought I had it good but my son just eyeballed it and it's near perfect.

It's going together well this morning.
 
 

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