vinyl floor lifting!


Old 07-19-03, 04:04 AM
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vinyl floor lifting!

We had a sheet vinyl floor installed over concrete last fall in our partial basement....installer first put a skim coat of concrete down - let "cure" about 2 hours, then laid the floor using manufacturer's recommended adhesive. At that time he told me that I may see some "bubbles" in the floor over the next few days...that was normal (?). That never happened, but 6 months later a large area of the floor..toward the middle bubbled up!! note: we haven't had any water down there. He was here and cut that area to check for moisture....there wasn't any..rather, the floor beneath was tried and flaky!! What causes this and what are my options now for a replacement floor. I appreciate any help/info.....please!!
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Old 07-19-03, 01:06 PM
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Sheet vinyl can have a few bubbles. The main reason for this is not enough open time allowing for gas to escape. They will go away on their on in a day or two. They will be small and not what you have.
For some reason the filler he used did not stick to the slab.
Moisture is one of the main causes of this and it sounds like that was the first thing he checked.
What was on the floor before? Did it have a covering or a bare slab? Could there have been old adhesive or grease?
My guess is that he used Armstrong S-184 filler and did not use their primer. I am not suggesting that S-184 is a bad product. The primer makes it better.
I am assuming he applied a skim coat and if so 2 hours shoud be ample time to cure.
The entire floor and all loose filler needs to be removed floor primed and new vinyl installed. The reason the filler did not bond must be addressed first

Old 07-19-03, 01:33 PM
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Edwin, thanks for your prompt reply. I'm not sure if he used Armstrong or not....I'll have to check with him.
Prior to this install there were vinyl tiles down that were removed...he prepped the floor and applied the skim coat, then a latex adhesive. There isn't any obvious moisture present, but since it is a basement area that is a consideration.
I'm wondering what, if anything can be put down there and stay put! Any suggestions? The installer who came here to check out this problem said that any vinyl won't do, I may have to go with a floating floor. This sounds like it's much more complicated than it should be.......when I was a kid, way back when, my basement had linoleum tiles over the concrete floor, survived a flood with no lifting and is still there many years later! Guess the product wasn't "environmentally friendly", but it sure has stood the test of time! LOL My floor's only been down 8 months!
I would truly appreciate any suggestions as to what to use down there for flooring.....thanks!!
Old 07-19-03, 05:00 PM
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Did the installer give a reason that vinyl will not work? Moisture, rough floor, crumbling slab, etc.
The answer to that will help to know what will work.
He saw your floor and can give a much better answer than I can from a distance.
Did he discuss ceramic tile or a commerical glue down carpet?
How are you using the basement?

Old 07-20-03, 03:28 AM
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He said that vinyl wouldn't work because the same thing would happen again.
I know he didn't use a primer, so maybe that would work. The floor did look crumbly underneath though - and he didn't know why that would happen.
The area is a partial basement used for laundry and playroom.
Thanks for your reply.
Old 07-20-03, 07:07 AM
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Moisture test

You can not check a floor for moisture juts by looking at it. 'Juyts because it lopoks dry and flaky does not mean moisture has caused you failure.

Water Vapor Emmisions are invisible. They are the second most
My guess it IS moisture related failure.

The dry flakly looking stuff is likely patch the moisture blew off the floor. popular cause of floorinf failures after faulty installation.

At this point you need an independent flooring inspector found at to come out and determine the true cause of you failure. After the cause of the failure is determined and addressed, then you can figure out what will go down and stay put.
Old 07-20-03, 11:04 AM
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Thanks - will look into that - seems like this is turning into a major undertaking!
Appreciate your input!
Old 07-26-03, 02:02 PM
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what color was this skimcoat? white or grey?could also be a gypsum based product that is notorious for "blowing"see if you can find out what was used to skim the floor with.When things went to environmentally friendly they compromised quality when they gave up the solvent base and went with water based,however there are things to compensate for that see if you can find those things out and get back to us
Old 07-27-03, 05:12 AM
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thanks for your reply - the skimcoat was gray.
Now they want to remove the floor and "looselay" it - won't it slip around without any glue down? I'd be interested in what products you would recommend.
Thanks again
Old 07-27-03, 11:20 AM
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They owe you a properly installed floor, ACCEPT NO LESS! Ask these questions:

1) Was the floor sealed and primed prior to patch so the patch could bond?

2) Was the patching compound primed so the vinyl floor would adhere?

3)Was the vinyl installed to the manufacturer's specifications?

Tell them you want an inspector to look at the floor to find out why the floor failed and to prevent it from haqppening again.]

You can find an inspector here:
Old 07-27-03, 12:07 PM
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i beleive what htye are reffering to is an interflex floor where you glue just around the perimeter of the room,that may be a good fix to the problem then you won't have the glue or the floor "pulling" on the patched area and may keep it from "blowing" again,however dan's right you need to have the slab analized before you do that to ensure that moisture was not the problem cause it could still fail in the future if you dont fix the problem now
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