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Hi there,
We recently ripped up our old carpeting and OSB underlayment to find 2" x 8" plank subfloor. Overall the subfloor is in pretty good condition. We also just laid down new 1/2" plywood underlayment with a 1/8" expansion gap. In the next couple of weeks we plan to lay down new vinyl plank flooring.



The underlayment/subfloor is level throughout almost the entire house. However there is a small section where we see a slope of about 1/4" towards one wall. I was originally planning to use some self leveling compound to level out this slope. However, doing this would cause the compound to also get inside of the expansion gaps, which once hardened would not give the plywood any 'room to move' during temperature fluctuations. Is there an easy way to prevent the compound from getting inside of the expansion gaps? Or am I overthinking this and should instead just let the compound flow naturally and fill in the expansion gaps when it levels out on the plywood? I've seen some posts about needing an expansion gap at all, but wasnt sure if this was valid or not.


Any help would be appreciated. Thanks!
 

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retired framer
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55,576 Posts
Hi there,
We recently ripped up our old carpeting and OSB underlayment to find 2" x 8" plank subfloor. Overall the subfloor is in pretty good condition. We also just laid down new 1/2" plywood underlayment with a 1/8" expansion gap. In the next couple of weeks we plan to lay down new vinyl plank flooring.



The underlayment/subfloor is level throughout almost the entire house. However there is a small section where we see a slope of about 1/4" towards one wall. I was originally planning to use some self leveling compound to level out this slope. However, doing this would cause the compound to also get inside of the expansion gaps, which once hardened would not give the plywood any 'room to move' during temperature fluctuations. Is there an easy way to prevent the compound from getting inside of the expansion gaps? Or am I overthinking this and should instead just let the compound flow naturally and fill in the expansion gaps when it levels out on the plywood? I've seen some posts about needing an expansion gap at all, but wasnt sure if this was valid or not.


Any help would be appreciated. Thanks!
I have used plywood on the hotted days of summer and some pretty cold days in winter and have never notice a 1/32" difference


How much of a temperature change were you expecting to have. Plywood in the house is stable even your lumber is fairly stable length but will gain width with moisture.

Leave your gaps around the vinyl.
 
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