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smythe01 01-20-2008 04:23 PM

can engineered hardwood be a floating floor?
I saw some engineered hardwood at Home Depot, it said it could be installed as a floating floor, but the home depot helper said he wouldn't recommend it. He showed me that the tongue and groove aren't strong enough by themselves. It was his opinion that no hardwood or engineered hardwood could be installed as a floating floor, nail or glue only.

Is that accurate? the display says it can be a floating floor, but the connections are definately not as good as the laminate when clicked together.

The product was Gunstock Oak, I won't glue my floor down if I DIY but I really like that floor. Should I not bother looking at hardwood at all?

troubleseeker 01-20-2008 06:31 PM

Most of the new floating floors have some sort of click lock joints. The older floors were T & G but they were glued together. I would find an open box and read the manufacturer's installation sheet for the answer. If not specifically addressed, jot down the factory service phone number and give them a call to speak with a technical rep. Occassionally you find persons at the big boxes who were tradesmen and actually do have product knowledge, but most of them are just stock clerks.

mpeterson72 01-20-2008 07:17 PM

One of the benefits of engineered is that it can be floated. I am not sure of the engineered you are talking about, but I can tell you we have installed several million square feet of engineered over the last 5 years and almost have always floated it.

If it is the T&G and not click, we would use a glue for T&G that reamins pliable when it is dry.

mike costello 01-20-2008 10:20 PM

For this exact reason I am glad I saved all my old laminate strap clamps.

If the manufacturor says its ok, you can float it. Use a good grade underlayment and a good glue. Im a Titebond fan.

They go together pretty well but I usually put the glue right to it and they need to be clamped.

Labor wise I would rather float it than direct glue it.But I also installed laminate like this for years.

If I had my druthers I would put down some rosin and staple it. Seems to go down easier and stay tighter.

Edited to add...I like floating it on a slab with a moisture barrier much better than a direct glue.
Wish somebody would invent concrete staples

poppameth 01-21-2008 05:48 AM

If you want to float an engineered floor the best option is a product such as Kahrs. It has the beefiest locking system I've seen on just about anything. No need for glue with this one. Tarkett has their own version of it as well.

Floorwizard 01-21-2008 11:27 AM

All engineered wood can float.
the question is the type of tounge and groove.
Some have a click glueless. Some have a traditional tounge and groove and need a specific glue to allow for some movement.

good luck-

smythe01 01-21-2008 02:32 PM

thanks for the comments everyone, one question:

when you say glue, to you mean to the floor or just gluing the toungue and groove for extra support and floating the floor? and is that acceptable for all engineered wood floors or just certain brands?

thanks again

Floorwizard 01-21-2008 09:09 PM

you can glue the wood to the floor.
Sometimes when you float you have the option of gluing the tounge and groove as well. Sometimes you have to glue the tounge and groove, sometimes you have the choice.

mr_untouchable7 07-06-2008 07:32 PM

engineered floating vs. glue down
I thought i'd post my situation under this heading to keep the theme rolling instead of adding new topic.. here goes:

i have recently purchased some very beautiful 3/8 x 3" engineered hardwood, which comes in about 5 to 6 different length cuts from a salvage store. It is the tongue and groove kind but NOT the click in type. I am going to put it down in an office 9x11 and also in my living room and hallway. I have begun preparing the office floor and since it is not adjacent to the living room and hallway, I thought it would give me some practice til i was ready to start on living room and hallway (~ 320 square feet). I have slab flooring throughout home built in 92. This is my scenario: the flooring i bought doesnt have a brand name on the box and there was no spec. sheet that came with it to know any specifications about it or contact number anywhere on the box. It just says "Brazilian Kempas", the word "Commum" underneath it (which i think means "common" in Portugese), and the size and sqare footage of the contents. The sales rep. that helped me told me that this type of flooring would have to be glued down to the slab (or stapled/nailed to a wood subfloor), was not to be glued together and could NOT be floated. He also said that the only engineered flooring that could be floated was the "click in" kind and that MOST engineered floors were not the floating kind but had to be glued down. My question is...what part of what he told me is true. I have purchased enough underlayment (floor muffler with self sealing ends) to do the office (only $60 for 200 square foot) but dont want to order more underlayment to float if i need to buy flooring adhesive to glue it down instead. He said that the tongue and groove kind i bought would break apart where i glued the strips together if i floated it. ??????? I need a little help with this....thanks..

smythe01 07-09-2008 08:25 PM

since I started this thread I went ahead and installed the engineered floor, I just glued it together and floated it, its not click, its tounge and groove. Speaking for myself, I havent had any problems floating my engineered hardwood floor, but I would be hesitant to recommend floating it if the sales person was adamant it couldnt be floated.
I do know that the ability to float a floor varies greatly from product to product, there are many types of engineered hardwood with varying quality, You might want to take samples around and get a second opinion from someone else.

good luck!

mr_untouchable7 07-09-2008 10:16 PM

actually i've decided to with what is called the double glue down method. Floor muffler is an underlayment which i have already purchased for the home when i first thought i would be able to float. Turns out they make an adhesive specifically for gluing their ultraseal floormuffler underlayment to the slab and another specific adhesive for gluing the adhesive to the wood. So in essence it will be glued down. The hardest part was finding someplace to buy the floormuffler adhesive. It is usually purchased by contractors who use it when putting in flooring in townhomes and condos that have certain sound limitations by the townhome/condo associations. This method is also used when cork is the underlayment but other adhesives are used for this. Not many people are familiar with this method. It will cost me an additional $175 to do it this way but actually i believe i will get a much better quality flooring in the end. If anyone has done this before please be sure and write in and comment.

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