Full Spread Vinyl Flooring 1 - Introduction Full Spread Vinyl Flooring 1 - Introduction

What you will be Doing

In this section, we explain the variety of vinyl flooring materials
on the market today and the techniques used to install them. There are now more patterns, colors, styles, and installation choices than ever before, and vinyl floors are an easy, affordable way to customize your floors. These pages detail and illustrate floor preparation, template use, cutting, and installing full-spread adhesive floors.

Most Common Mistakes

  1. When estimating the amount of sheet vinyl, forgetting to account for pattern matching at a seam.
  2. Unrolling sheet vinyl too early, or waiting too long to lay it, thereby causing it to shrink before it is permanently laid in place.
  3. Neglecting to use flooring materials with the compatible adhesive and appropriate trowel at seams.
  4. If you are applying a seamed floor, not laying the smaller section first.

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Full-spread adhesive is fast becoming the least popular type of vinyl flooring. It cannot be removed as easily as other floorings, should you decide to install another floor at a later date. Check around to see if your chosen pattern is available in a perimeter bond application, before you opt for the full-spread. If your pattern is available only in a full spread application, try to limit its installation to small rooms. It is much too cumbersome to try to align on larger floors already spread with adhesive.


  1. Provide adequate ventilation with window fans when using adhesives, as some are toxic.
  2. Extinguish pilot lights and any open flames when applying adhesives which can be flammable.
  3. The proper respirator should be worn when using substances with toxic fumes.
  4. Wear rubber gloves when working with solvents.
  5. Keep blades sharp. A dull blade requires excessive force, can slip, and cause accidents.
  6. Goggles or safety glasses should be worn whenever hammering, prying, or cutting materials.
  7. Many older existing floor materials may contain asbestos fibers. Avoid sanding or dry scraping them, because inhaling asbestos fibers or dust may cause asbestosis or other bodily harm.
  8. Use the proper protection, take precautions, and plan ahead. Never bypass safety to save money or rush a project.

Useful Terms

  • Full-spread adhesive. Requires trowel and application of adhesive under the entire vinyl floor.
  • Ledging. A condition where one side of seam overlaps another.
  • Parameter bond. Attached only at walls and seams where flooring shrinks after installation to tighten over the floor.
  • Template. A paper pattern used to assure accurate error-free installation.
  • Underlayment. A layer of plywood applied under the vinyl to level and flash, or even out a deteriorated floor.

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