Undercutting jambs for luxury vinyl tile installation

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Old 01-10-13, 12:42 PM
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Undercutting jambs for luxury vinyl tile installation

Hello,

I'm about to install some Armstrong Alterna vinyl tile (limestone backed, about 1/8" thick) in my laundry room. When installing floating hardwood floors I've undercut the door jambs and it was easy to slide the flooring under them. Can I do this with the vinyl tile too? I'm concerned that the glue will grab the tile and I won't be able to slide the tile into place under the jamb. This is my first experience gluing down a vinyl tile floor. Does the glue grab immediately? If so, that would seem to make sliding the tile underneath the door jamb difficult. Or do I just undercut with a little extra gap to allow the tile to slide into place without contacting the adhesive until it is pressed into place, and go back and fill the gap later?

The recommended adhesive is supposed to dry until it is dry to the touch before the tiles are laid down.

Thanks for any advice.
 
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Old 01-10-13, 12:53 PM
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The adhesive sounds like contact cement and with it you don't get any ability to slide, touch and you're done. Does the label say anything about this?
 
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Old 01-10-13, 01:22 PM
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The adhesive is Armstrong S-288. I don't have it in my possession yet.

The description of the adhesive states "The strong initial grab reduces product shifting in set-in-wet applications". The adhesive instructions state that when applied over porous surfaces, the tile should be set when the adhesive is still slightly wet, while the tile instructions state that the adhesive must be dry to the touch. I'm going to try to contact Armstrong and confirm whether the tile instructions take precedence over the adhesive instructions.

The instructions for the tile state "Press the tile firmly into the adhesive do NOT slide tile into place".

I'm going to eventually replace both doors in the laundry room, so it would be ok to undercut the jambs a little high, just to allow clearance for positioning the tile before pressing it into place.
 
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Old 01-10-13, 01:47 PM
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Sounds exactly like contact cement - once you touch, it's stuck.
 
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Old 01-10-13, 04:13 PM
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its not a contact cement. They don't want the adhesive to ooze up at the joints, thats why they don't recomend sliding it in place. I always cut the jambs just a hair higher than the tile, just to allow for movement and to keep the floor from binding. Make sure your floor is aclimated to the enviroment and proper temperature is maintained during installation, use the proper trowel.
 
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Old 04-06-13, 01:56 PM
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Some pics of my install

I'm pretty pleased with how things turned out. There were several reasons why installing ceramic tile was not feasible, including:

1) Time constraints (big one)
2) Finished floor height
3) Subfloor suitability
4) Lack of tools on site

I was doing this work on the house we were moving into, and it had to be done before we moved in so we could have the washer and dryer delivered right after we moved in. I only had a few evenings to work on it as we hadn't yet moved to the state where the new house was located, and I had limited tools available to work with as we hadn't moved yet. After pulling up the old sheet vinyl floor and finding particle board (this is a laundry room), I had to tear it out and install plywood, which was extra work I hadn't planned.









One of the biggest drawbacks is cost, the tiles are up to $4.50/sq ft, and the grout is crazy expensive, like almost $100 for a tub. This special grout is needed though - I've seen Armstrong videos showing how flexible it is, and a regular grout for ceramic tile would crack under conditions where this stuff stays intact.

I had considered some vinyl planks from one of the big box stores, but after researching things, I found that the best luxury vinyl tile from Mannington (Adura), Congoleum (DuraCeramic) and Armstrong (Alterna) is not sold in the big box stores, but only at specialty flooring stores. One of the local flooring stores carries all three brands so it was easy to see them all at once. Oddly enough, in the city we were moving from, LVT was all but impossible to find - perhaps because all the homes are slab foundation, and there is almost no reason not to install real tile. I like this stuff enough that I would consider using it in another room where ceramic might not be an option.
 
 

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