Recommendations for Glue Down LVP?

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Melly

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Jun 15, 2018
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Hi!
I'm looking for a good, cost effective glue down LVP for my living room. Previously have used Armstrong and it's been good, but quite expensive. I realize you get what you pay for. Any recommendations are appreciated!
 

Commercial Floor Rep

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Armstrong makes a good product and if you've like the performance I would recommend you stay with it.

Here's why,

The wearlayers in LVT can be quite different from manufacturer to manufacturer even when the specifications seem the same. What this can result in if you start to "mix" manufacturers is a lot of small aggravating problems. Slight height differences, sheen variation (shiny vs. dull), and more importantly to a home owner - difference in maintenance recommendations and products can be significant.

In your case I think the old adage that "If it ain't broke, don't fix it" is pretty accurate.

The other more important thing is that to get a product that would perform as well from another manufacturer (Mannington, Shaw, Mohawk, Karndean, Tarkett) you're going to essentially spend the same kind of money. In the marketplace these products are all essentially within pennies of one another to the dealer. If you see something out there cheaper, especially with the supply chain issues our industry is facing, then you can bet that it isn't the same "quality" of product.

Bear in mind that manufacturers also make different qualities of products within their own lines to make sure that they can meet multiple levels of a consumers buying budget. The cheaper products will have less "bells & whistles" and generally a lesser performance as a result. There's also another "rule of thumb" that's very true within the hard surface flooring world: The cheaper the flooring, the more the labor costs. The reason for this is because the floor prep required to make a cheap floor perform and install correctly and not look terrible is much more exacting. In other words, more expensive floors tend to have a greater margin for error.

Here's an example:

A square edged, thinner product will "telegraph" or show more subfloor imperfections than a bevel-edged or micro-bevel edged product. This is because any unevenness in the subfloor will show as "ledging" (one edge higher than the other) where the pieces come together at the joint. As a result the installer has to make certain that the floor is extremely flat to avoid any ledging. It costs more money to machine the edges during manufacturing as it's a separate process that's performed after the product is made.

Also, be prepared to wait. Right now our industry is experiencing severe supply chain issues and many products are on back order. I've seen everything from a few weeks (2-3) to "probably sometime in January" on lead times.

Wish you the best with your project and let us know how things work out.
 

Melly

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Joined
Jun 15, 2018
Messages
14
Thank you SO much for this informative answer. Wow! That covers a lot. I am looking at Alterna Vivera glue down, right now. Their Alterna Vivera Better. It has a little thinner layer than their Best, but that should be sufficient for my husband, cat and myself? Meaning, it won't be too thin?
Also, is it common to put glue down LVP in a livingroom. The supply rep told me it is usually used for commercial, but since I have it in the rest of the house, to use glue down so the height matches. Armstrong discontinued interlocking in the Vivera, he told me. And besides, I have read too many nightmare stories with floating. Would you mind sharing your opinion, please?
Thanks again. :)
 

Commercial Floor Rep

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You're correct. The Better has a 12mil wearlayer vs the Best with a 20. Their wearlayer is a good wearlayer. It's a modified urethane with an diamond dust additive (thus the "Diamond 10" branding).

The only thing that's a bit concerning is that the overall thickness of the product is .080" so it will require that your floor prep is done well to make sure nothing telegraphs through. To give a comparison, most sheet vinyl products are .080". However, for your application this product should perform well and give you a nice floor for several year.

It is more common to use glue down in commercial applications vs. floating but that's only because floating doesn't lend itself to commercial traffic. Specifically, rolling traffic can cause the floor to become unlocked or simply damage the locking mechanism all together. The floating products today are not the same ones of just a few years past. The SPC and WPC rigid bodies on these products are huge improvement over the first generation that was extremely susceptible to thermal expansion and contraction. These older products were very susceptible to direct sunlight and would expand and buckle. Many weren't built heavy enough and would become unlocked or damaged from normal household traffic. Bottom line is they just weren't made well. These newer products are much more rigid and are very similar to a laminate floor with added bonus of not having a "wood" component that could swell when things were spilled or a leak occurred. They have their place and many perform very similarly to laminate floors which are a good product in their own right.

However, at the end of the day, if it's my house and I want a "tried and true" installation system then I'm putting in glue down.
 

Melly

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Jun 15, 2018
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Thank you for this, so very helpful. My installer said he would need to put underlayment down on the sub floor. Is that part of the prep being well done?
He said that's what makes it expensive; the underlayment. I forgot about that.
 

Commercial Floor Rep

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Yes, new underlayment would be called for to do a good job with this product or really any glue down product. You want the floor flat (the flatness standards are listed in the installation instructions) but are generally within 3/16" in a 10' span in any direction. And you want the floor smooth. No staples sticking up, no edges on the underlayment being higher or lower to the adjacent panel, to "proud corners" on the underlayment. Seams should generally be smooth and filled if any gaps.
 

Melly

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Joined
Jun 15, 2018
Messages
14
Yes, new underlayment would be called for to do a good job with this product or really any glue down product. You want the floor flat (the flatness standards are listed in the installation instructions) but are generally within 3/16" in a 10' span in any direction. And you want the floor smooth. No staples sticking up, no edges on the underlayment being higher or lower to the adjacent panel, to "proud corners" on the underlayment. Seams should generally be smooth and filled if any gaps.

So I am thinking this is going to be very expensive for 350 square feet. I may have to look into floating LVP. Does Armstrong make a decent floating LVP? And would I need underlayment with this type?
 
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