Vinyl Tile Seams


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Old 03-14-09, 09:37 AM
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Vinyl Tile Seams

I have a vinyl tiles that I put down on my kitchen floor four years ago. After about six months, I noticed that most of the seams were opening up. So I just let it go, until now. I believe the plywood underneath was not prepared properly. It was clean and smooth before I put tiles down.
I also believe I did not help matters by using water with cleaner and a deck brush to scrub the new tiles as I think water gets below the tiles and makes the plywood swell up, causing the seams to open up. Do you agree that this is a possible cause? What are the remedies?

If I have to start over and remove the plywood flooring (1/4 inch I think) then The only problem I see is that kick plate area on the base cabinets would be a difficult area to work on with any tool to cut the 1/4 inch pylwood right up to the base. So I need advice for this area too.

I think this flooring contains a lot of moisture and I would not mind ripping as much out as I can.
I believe that I should also seal the new plywood with the best sealer, rather then taking a chance and sand down and clean the old plywood.

I don't know if hardwood flooring is under the plywood but I do have 3/4 tongue & groove subfloor. So How to proceed and what materials from nails, adhesive and replacement flooring would you use?
 
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Old 03-14-09, 02:51 PM
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vinyl peel-n-sticks do shrink over time. it has nothing to do with how your floor was prepared. If you are scrubbing your floors with lots of water it will get between the joints and swell your subfloor. If your going to clean that way use a sheet vinyl next time.
 
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Old 03-14-09, 03:40 PM
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Is there a product, simular to vinyl that does not shrink? Also the existing tiles mar easily requiring me to use a strong cleaner with water. I worked with sheet vinyl and it was difficult to work without it tearing. I don't care to work with it again. On another forum, someone mentioned that self stick vinyl tiles can move from walking on them. So I might have better luck applying adhesive to the tiles.
 
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Old 03-14-09, 06:04 PM
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Use a fiberglass backed vinyl. It's much easier to work with. If you use peel and sticks your going to have the same problem again. They mar easily because they are junk. That's why they cost $1 sqft.

Applying adhesive to the tiles does not fix any of you compaints. They will still shrink over time and you'll still get your subfloor wet the way you clean.
 
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Old 03-15-09, 04:45 AM
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Thanks,
Then I'll change my cleaning methods and just use a damp mop for cleaning. I will use fiberglass tiles too. Can you give me some manufacturer names of quality fiberglass tiles. I doubt that the home centers like Lowe's and Home Depot sell them but I'll check for sure anyway. As for those gaps, there are only about 3 tiles that have 1/16 inch gaps and all the rest have 1/32 inch gaps. Now with better cleaning methods, the proplem won't be as bad I hope.
 
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Old 03-15-09, 08:50 AM
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I think Arkon is saying to use fiberglass backed SHEET vinyl. Even the more expensive peel and stick will probably not be available with that..unless they could special order it..I dunno.

Peel and stick tiles will not last as long as quality sheet goods. They stretch and shrink, are suseptible to moisture at the seams and generally just a cheap product.

They are ok for a quick upgrade for selling a home or similar...but don't expect them to last and look good as long as sheet.

There are many new vinyl sheet products that are much easier to work with, and I've seen some that require no glue at all. They can even be removed and replaced if needed.
 
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Old 03-15-09, 08:54 AM
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We no longer replace vinyl in our rental units with new vinyl, we've found it's cheaper to put down ceramic instead.
 
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Old 03-15-09, 11:37 AM
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Exactly! The glass-backed goods are only on sheets. Check them out you may be impressed. They look hella better than stick-ons. Mannington Sobella, Armstrong StrataMax, Tarkett FiberFloor, IVC. HD and Lowes may carry one but i haven't seen one there yet.
 
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Old 03-15-09, 03:33 PM
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Arkon,
I will use fiberglass backed vinyl and pick one of the manufacturers you listed. Is it necessary to apply adhesive all over the floor or in spots or do I just need to add it on the perimiter?
I believe I need to use construction paper to make a template. I would not think of cutting the sheet just on measurements alone.
 
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Old 03-15-09, 03:40 PM
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It all depends on the manufacturer. Some are perimeter glued, some are fully glued. I'm not familiar with the products Arkon listed, just general info. Follow their instructions. Ask about "loose lay" I believe it is called, no adhesive required.

Get a roll of brown paper at the store/home ceter/flooring store...it's like very heavy brown wrapping paper and makes doing templates very easy. Not rosin paper, which I believe is more expensive and something different.
 
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Old 03-15-09, 04:44 PM
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Thanks,
I will take a look at the loose lay. I think I will move the fridge in another room to make it easier to lay down the new vinyl.
 
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Old 03-18-09, 09:47 PM
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your better off full spreading the vinyl. especially in a kitchen where a fridge is rolled in and out. Plus when you loose lay you must treat the vinyl like a laminate that expands and contracts, cutting a perimeter expansion gap that must be covered. full spread makes the finish work easier.
All of the manufacturers listed say to lay the floor in a pressure sensative adhesive that is dry to the touch. That way you can actually lift out the vinyl down the road if needed. But if that is not a concern you can wet lay the vinyl and it is much easier to work with while installing.
 
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Old 03-19-09, 12:48 AM
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Arkon,
Thanks You and others for the help but there's been a change in plans. I decided to go with Pergo laminated flooring. The reason for the change is that I really did not give it much thought on what already existed in the kitchen. 25 years ago, I installed Phillipene mahogony wood on two walls of the kitchen in a herribone fashion. It was a bit of overkill because the wood is 3/4 inch. If this laminated flooring was available back then, I could have used that. Once I stepped back a gave it a study, I realize it would be a shame not to put down something that would compliment the Phillipene mahogony. The product I will order today is 10 mm thick (about 3/8 inch) rated commercial grade. I'll see if I can post a picture of one of the walls on Photobucket.
Go to: Pictures by rjordan392 - Photobucket
 

Last edited by rjordan392; 03-19-09 at 01:23 AM.
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Old 03-19-09, 09:07 AM
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One bit of warning and i'll get out of your way. When you have real wood in a room, a beautiful, rich mohagany like yours, and you put a laminate next to it... It doesn't 'compliment' it. It makes the laminate look terribley cheap.

I would look at 2 other options if putting down real wood is not an option. Check out the Mannington Sobella (which is a glass-back sheet vinyl that has some really good wood looks) and Mannington Adura (a hard vinyl plank that looks like wood or tile). Both of these actually look more like real wood than most laminates.

There are some incredible looking laminates out there that take a discerning eye to tell the difference from their real counterparts. But you'll have to spend the money to get them. If you are willing to spend it, you won't be disappionted. Try to skimp and you'll know what i'm saying.
 
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Old 03-19-09, 12:11 PM
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Arkon,
I placed my order this morning for Pergo's 8 inch wide cabernet oak # 050414. This plank is commercial rated with an AC of 5 and a lifetime warranty for residential use. I am please with it and it looks like real wood to me. I won't be splashing water around like I use to. The picture on photobucket has a lot of red in it and is not the natural color I wanted. When I tried to mess with the color and tone controls, it just made the wood look darker.
 
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Old 03-19-09, 01:13 PM
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I'm familiar with that one by pergo. You'll see what i mean.
 
 

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